Saturday, November 6, 2010

GSU win trumps all

My wife called it.

With the Georgia Southern football team seemingly out of the playoff hunt with four losses, there were lots of story lines that might have produced a front page picture.

Homecoming. The annual Blue-Out, where most folks dress out in team colors and some paint their bodies from head to toe. Being the last home game of the season, the senior football players were honored. Not to mention the nippy fall weather that had folks huddling together in their coats and blankets.

No shortage of possibilities for a front page photograph.

While alumni were out in full force, the visual presence of Homecoming wasn't so apparent, and I mentioned that to my wife before we both went about our busy work days. And, being the loyal Georgia Southern fan she is, she quipped "When the Eagles beat App State, then you'll have a front page picture!"

I smiled. Georgia Southern has struggled to return to the heights of their glory since their last Football Championship Series (FCS, formerly Division 1-AA) Championship in 2001, their sixth title overall. Since that time, they have watched Appalachian State become a perennial powerhouse and championship contender, winning three straight titles of their own from 2005-2007. Today, the Mountaineers were the number one ranked team in the country and the Eagles were supposed to be a minor speed bump on the way to another championship run.

So I went about finding a way to tell the stories of the day surrounding the game as App State raced to a 14-0 lead.

But the Eagles refused to act like a speed bump. With the Mountaineers threatening to take a 21-0 lead in the second quarter, they came up with an interception in the end zone. Then they scored with only seconds to go before the half. Then they came out after the break, marched down the field, and scored again. 14-all.

The rest of the second half was a slugfest in which the defenses dominated. Regulation ended with the game still tied up at 14. The Eagles scored a touchdown on their first possession in overtime. Then they forced a fumble by the Mountaineers quarterback and recovered it. Game over. Stadium erupts in celebration. Got my front page picture.

Good call, my love!

Georgia Southern fullback Robert Brown (5), center right, celebrates a four-yard touchdown in overtime against number-one ranked (FCS) Appalachian State at Paulson Stadium in Statesboro, Ga.  Saturday.


  1. I ran that puppy four columns, Scott. Sorta dominates the page, as it should.

  2. fabulous post.
    the images capture the excitement, and your narrative adds so much to the importance of the moment.
    the backstory gives relevant context. nicely done. and nicely shot.and great guidance from your wife!!


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