5 Things We Learned From South Alabama���s 41 31 Loss To Louisiana Monroe

<5 Things We Learned From South Alabama���s 41 31 Loss To Louisiana Monroe>

One step forward, one step back.

That’s been the pattern for South Alabama football this season. Every time the Jaguars seem to be making strides (as with a 41-14 victory over Georgia Southern on Oct. 14), they turn in a performance like their 41-31 loss at Louisiana-Monroe on Saturday night.

Read more South Alabama football

South Alabama’s defense befuddled in 41-31 loss to Louisiana-Monroe

Quarter-by-quarter look at South Alabama’s 41-31 loss to Louisiana-Monroe

Southern Miss set to join Sun Belt Conference, reports say

South Alabama (4-3 overall, 1-3 Sun Belt Conference) led only once and never seized the momentum as the Warhawks (4-3, 3-2) had the Jaguars out of sorts all night. USA still has a shot at reaching a bowl this season, but is losing its margin for error with every subpar performance.

Here are five things we learned from the Jaguars’ dud of a loss to the Warhawks:

1. South Alabama remains maddeningly inconsistent as a program

As has been the case for going on seven years, the Jaguars seem to be unable to put together back-to-back good games. They followed up a thorough opening-night whipping of Southern Miss with back-to-back “struggle” wins over Bowling Green and Alcorn State. South Alabama then had a “good loss” vs. Louisiana, before a four-overtime befuddler at Texas State. A dominating win over Georgia Southern led into Saturday night’s disappointment, which was such a thorough defeat it’s can’t be written off as a fluke. A first-year coaching staff deserves some latitude in this regard, but a disturbing pattern continues.

2. Defense never really got control of the game

ULM dominated offensively from the opening kickoff and almost never let up. The Warhawks drove quickly to the end zone on their first possession and scored on five of six series in the second and third quarters. Freshman quarterback Chandler Rogers put on a clinic, spreading the ball to several different receivers and using his legs to stay out of trouble in the pocket. South Alabama’s previously outstanding situational defense was non-existent. The Jaguars couldn’t get off the field consistently on third-and-long or third-and-short and weren’t able to stop the Warhawks in the red zone.

3. Offense was mostly good, but disappeared at the wrong time

Under most circumstances, 31 points is more than enough to win. However, the Jaguars played far from a complete game on Saturday. The passing game moved the ball long and short, but protection was inconsistent and Jake Bentley threw two interceptions. The running game couldn’t get any push in the first half. Worst of all, South Alabama went three-and-out on back-to-back possessions after taking a 31-24 lead, allowing ULM to re-take control of the game. Another missed field goal by Diego Guajardo late in the fourth quarter killed any chances of a comeback.

4. Jaguars are a totally different team on the road

No matter the coach, no matter the year, the Jaguars cannot seem to win in the Sun Belt on the road. Since going 2-2 in road conference games in 2014, they’ve gone 1-3, 0-4, 1-3, 0-4, 0-4, 1-3 and now 0-2 with two games left. South Alabama has just two road wins period since 2017, at Arkansas State last year and at Bowling Green (a non-conference game) earlier this season. South Alabama is 0-7 all-time in games at Texas State and ULM, who are consistently two of the worst teams in the Sun Belt. Whatever the reason for the Jaguars’ road woes, it’s something they have to solve to become a championship program.

5. Terry Bowden continues to be a master game-planner

Bowden isn’t taken seriously for a lot of reasons, some of which aren’t his fault (his stature and his last name) and some of which are (his lack of recruiting prowess and his inability to stop talking sometimes). But the fact remains he can get his team well-prepared to play against most anyone. The year-to-year turnaround by the Warhawks is truly stunning. To put up more than 550 yards with a freshman quarterback against a good defense is quite an accomplishment. If Bowden isn’t Sun Belt Coach of the Year in 2021, they should retire the award.

Next up : South Alabama is back home Saturday vs. Arkansas State. Kickoff is set for 4 p.m. at Hancock Whitney Stadium.

Source : https://www.al.com/sports/2021/10/5-things-we-learned-from-south-alabamas-41-31-loss-to-louisiana-monroe.html

893
5 things we learned from South Alabama’s 41-31 loss to Louisiana-Monroe

Source:al.com

5 things we learned from South Alabama’s 41-31 loss to Louisiana-Monroe

5 things we learned from South Alabama’s 31-13 win over Arkansas State

Source:al.com

5 things we learned from South Alabama’s 31-13 win over Arkansas State

Alabama State football hosts Texas Southern; Scouting Report, Prediction

Source:Yahoo News

Alabama State football hosts Texas Southern; Scouting Report, Prediction