Tonight the curtain goes up on year 2 of the Trent Miles Era for Georgia State Football, as the Panthers welcome the Wildcats of Abilene Christian to the Georgia Dome. Miles will tell you that this preseason went a lot smoother than last years, as the players better knew what was expected by he and the rest of the coaching staff. On the other hand, Miles knows better what to expect from his team, that is now made of more players that he recruited.
There are several big questions for the 2014 Panthers. We can start with quarterback. Who is leading the offense this fall?
JUCO transfer Nick Arbuckle will get the keys to the car to open the season. He put up huge numbers in two seasons at Pierce College in California. Arbuckle’s arrival seems to have motivated Ronnie Bell to elevate his game. The Sandy Creek HS product, who started most of last season’s games, had some shining moments during preseason camp. Be on the lookout for true freshman Emiere Scaife. The lefty from Charlotte is clearly the Panthers quarterback of the future.
Who will replace Albert Wilson?
Nobody !!! During his time on Decatur Street Wilson did everything except wash uniforms and drive the bus. The Panthers version of the Swiss Army Knife has moved on to the NFL leaving the trio of Robert Davis, Avery Sweeting and LynQuez Blair to shoulder the receiving load.
With Wilson gone, who is the team’s top player?
Just week’s ago we saw a Georgia native become the first punter in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. I’m not saying that is where Matt Hubbard is headed, but All Sun-Belt Conference performer is the Panthers most potent returning weapon. The former Starr’s Mill standout has averaged better than 42 years per kick during his GSU career. Hubbard was called on the punt 78 times last season, lets hope there will be less work for him in his senior season.
Which unit is the teams best?
The Panthers defense is young but solid. Most of this unit was thrown into the fire as true freshmen last season. Shawayne Lawrence, Jalen Lawrence and Mackendy Cheridor are a year older and a year wiser. The versatile Sean Jeppesen has found a home at Linebacker and will be a tag team partner for Joseph Peterson. Peterson is now a junior, but it seems he has been around much longer. Peterson has seen a lot in his time at Georgia State, but one thing he hasn’t seen is a Panthers victory in the Georgia Dome. Let’s hope that changes tonight.
Join us for the Panther PreGame Show at 6:30pm, followed by Georgia State vs Abilene Christian at 7pm on 1340 The Fan 2. The game will also be televised on ESPNU