Friday, Sept. 2, 7 p.m. ET
Georgia Dome, Atlanta, GA.
American Sports Network/ESPN3
● This is the second meeting between the two schools, which met for the first time last year in Muncie. The Panthers prevailed that day, 31-19, thanks in large part to the efforts of State quarterback Nick Arbuckle. He threw for 412 yards with a touchdown and ran for two more scores. With Arbuckle now gone, the Panthers are turning to Emiere Scaife, who failed to complete a pass in eight attempts last year. . .
● Georgia State divided the rushing workload among several backs last year. Glenn Smith topped three players with over 300 yards rushing. He owned 356 yards on 89 carries with one TD.
● The Panthers return 16 starters – seven on offense and nine on defense. There were 52 letterwinnres on a team that went 6-7 overall and 5-3 in Sun Belt play.
● Georgia State earned its first ever bowl invitation last year, falling 26-17 to San Jose State at the inaugural Cure Bowl in Orlando, Fla.
● LB Alonzo McGee counted 12.5 TFL among his 70 tackles last year. DL Mackendry Cheridor had 3.0 sacks and 6.5 TFL, while DB Chandron Sullivan totaled 50 stops, 4.5 TFL and 2 INT.
● BSU quarterback Riley Neal completed 391 of 2276 yards (58.3%) with 16 TDs and 6 interceptions in his freshman campaign.
● Kevon Mabon will be a prime target this year after grabbing 70 tosses for 745 yards a year ago.
● Darian Green averaged 5.0 ypc (145 trips, 730 yards) and tallied 5 TDs.
● Ball State returns 18 starters (6 offense, 9 defense, 3 special teams) from a team that went 3-9 overall, 2-9 MAC.
● Linebacker Sean Wiggins registered 95 stops, while lineman Joshua Posley notched 58 tackles with 9.0 TFL and 2.5 sacks. DB Tyree Holder had two interceptions.