By Jesse Wood
The Appalachian State football team is heading to Mobile, Ala., for its regular season finale against South Alabama on Saturday, Dec. 5. Kickoff at Ladd-Peebles Stadium is set for 7:30 p.m. ET.
The Mountaineers (9-2) have clinched a bowl bid and are in search of a record-tying 10th win for a team in the Sun Belt Conference, while South Alabama (5-6) looks to become bowl eligible with a sixth win.
According to the App State Athletics office, only three Sun Belt teams have won 10 games in a season – and two of those needed a bowl win at the end of the season to end up in double digits.
Middle Tennessee won 10 games in 2009 and Arkansas State did so in 2011 and 2012. With a win on Saturday, Appalachian State would join Arkansas State’s 2011 squad as the only Sun Belt teams to ever post double-digit wins in the regular season.
The matchup is Appalachian State’s second consecutive Sun Belt Network Game of the Week broadcast on ESPN 3. Play by play will be announced by Matt Stewart along side analyst John Gregory and sideline reporter Kati Morse.
Listen live across Appalachian IMG Sports Network as coverage begins at 5:30 p.m. Click here for list of network affiliates.
Other Game Notes:
- With a victory at South Alabama, Appalachian would also reach double-digit wins in the regular season for only the fourth time in the program’s 86-year history. The Mountaineers previously had double-digit regular-season victories in 1995 (11-0), 2006 (10-1) and 2008 (10-2).
- With a win at South Alabama and an Arkansas State home loss versus Texas State, Appalachian would claim a share of its first-ever Sun Belt championship.
- Appalachian State is assured of making its first-ever NCAA bowl appearance. The Mountaineers will learn their bowl destination on Sunday.
- App State is coming off an impressive 28-7 victory over UL Lafayette last Saturday. • The Mountaineers’ defense highlighted the triumph over UL-L by limiting the Ragin’ Cajuns to 246 total yards, including just 42 rushing yards on 36 carries (1.2 avg.). Appalachian also set season highs with six sacks and eight quarterback hurries. • Following last week’s dominant performance, Appalachian State’s defense leads the Sun Belt and ranks among the nation’s top 25 in scoring (17.5 ppg – 12th in FBS), total (313.7 ypg – 12th in FBS), passing (187.5 ypg – 21st in FBS) and rushing (126.3 ypg – 22nd in FBS).
- Not to be outdone, Appalachian’s offense leads the Sun Belt in total offense at 471.3 yards per game (26th nationally) and ranks among the nation’s top 20 in passing efficiency (170.06 – 4th), rushing (265.9 ypg – 6th) and scoring (37.5 ppg – 18th).
- For the second-straight week, Appalachian State’s opponent is fighting for its postseason life as South Alabama (5-6, 3-4 Sun Belt) needs a win to become bowl eligible.
- South Alabama is the only conference opponent that Appalachian State hasn’t beaten in its first 15 Sun Belt games. The Jaguars handed the Mountaineers a 47-21 schellacking on Oct. 4 of last season at Kidd Brewer Stadium.
- Since the disheartening loss to South Alabama last October, Appalachian has won 12-of-13 Sun Belt games.
For all of the information on Saturday’s matchup, including links to live video, audio and stats, both teams’ rosters, depth charts, game notes and much more, click HERE to visit appstatesports.com’s official Gameday Central page.