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GSU Football Notebook: UD's win not all in the scheme
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NEWARK, Del. — The Delaware Blue Hens relied on a 4-2 front to plug the middle and an All-American safety named Anthony Bratton attacking the perimeter to slow the Georgia Southern triple option attack in Saturday’s semifinal playoff game.

In the end, Georgia Southern’s four fumbles were the downfall as the Eagles (10-5) fell 27-10 Saturday in the semifinals of the FCS playoffs, but the scheme worked as intended for the Blue Hens.

The Delaware front six held GSU fullback Robert Brown to 49 yards on 13 carries and UD free safety Anthony Bratton finished with a career-high 14 tackles.

Of course, it wasn’t anything the first-year GSU coach hadn’t seen before.

"In 2007 when I was with Navy, they used that defense and we scored 52," Monken said. "Last year they played Navy with the same defense, and Navy scored 35. It wasn’t the defense, the scheme. We didn’t block them when we had the chances to block them."

Monken saw what the Eagles did on their first offensive drive, marching 71 yards on nine plays — all on the ground — before fumbling on the 1-yard line.

"Had we been able to block their free safety with our slotbacks, we would’ve got all we wanted," Monken said. "It would have been a track meet."


Facing the champs

Saturday marked the sixth time this season Georgia Southern played a conference co-champion. Delaware, which split the Colonial Athletic Association title with William and Mary, was the only one GSU did not defeat.

This season, the Eagles finished 5-2 against conference champs, beating William and Mary, splitting with Southern Conference co-champ Wofford and defeating Appalachian State, and knocking off Big South co-champion Coastal Carolina during the regular season and MEAC co-champion South Carolina State in the playoffs.

The Eagles finished tied for third in the SoCon.


A strong finish

Laron Scott, a third-team, All-American cornerback for GSU, and also a first-team All-SoCon kick returner, finished the 2010 season with 44 returns for 1,151 yards.

Both were school records for a single season.

Scott’s 58-yard return against Wofford in the quarterfinals was the longest kickoff return in Georgia Southern’s playoff history, and his 52-yarder Saturday against Delaware was the second-longest.


First-year flash

Georgia Southern’s true freshman fullback Robert Brown finished the 2010 season with 1,004 rushing yards.

He is the GSU first true freshman to rush for over 1,000 yards since Joe Ross in 1987. During Adrian Peterson’s redshirt-freshman campaign in 1998, he rushed for 1,932 yards, the single-season Georgia Southern record.


The last word

Delaware took a 3-2 advantage in the all-time series against Georgia Southern with Saturday’s win. Ninth-year Delaware coach K.C. Keeler improved to 2-0 against the Eagles. His first-career game at UD was a 22-19 win over the Eagles on Thursday, August 29, 2002.

Jeff Monken became the second head coach at GSU to lose his first-career playoff game to the Blue Hens Saturday.

Delaware handed former GSU coach Paul Johnson his first playoff loss in the quarterfinals, 16-7, on Dec. 6, 1997. Johnson went to three-straight national title games after that, and won two.


Matt Yogus can be reached at (912) 489-9408.


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