By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Saturday crucial in race for SoCon

During the final weeks of the 2012 season, somebody in the Southern Conference will be trying not to lose the conference championship. This coming Saturday, somebody will be trying to make a claim to win it.

There are three one-loss teams in the SoCon right now — No. 2 Georgia Southern, No. 7 Wofford and unranked Chattanooga.

On Saturday, when GSU faces Chattanooga and Wofford plays The Citadel, the picture will become pretty clear. One will be in control of the SoCon title, one will be in sight of it, and one will be treading water in the race.

Everybody still has "if" scenarios for an outright SoCon title.


Georgia Southern

The Eagles (6-1, 5-1 SoCon) took care of business last Saturday on the road at Furman, and are currently at the head of the pack. The recipe is simple — beat Chattanooga and No. 16 Appalachian State, and win the SoCon’s automatic playoff bid. However, GSU can all but clinch the championship on Saturday with one scenario. If the Eagles defeat Chattanooga, Wofford loses to The Citadel and Appalachian State loses at Western Carolina, the Eagles will clinch a share of the title with The Citadel, with the Bulldogs owning the tiebreaker. Regardless of who wins the Nov. 3 matchup between ASU and the Eagles, GSU will own the tiebreaker over Wofford and Chattanooga in that scenario.

Assuming Appalachian State beats Western Carolina on Saturday, ASU would be in the mix for a share of the title, but The Citadel also owns the tiebreaker over the Mountaineers.



How can anybody figure out the Chattanooga Mocs?

Chattanooga (4-3, 3-1) lost three of its first four games, including a Sept. 22 loss to Appalachian State, but then notched wins over The Citadel, Furman and Samford in convincing fashion.

There’s a lot of SoCon football left to be played by the Mocs, but a win over Georgia Southern would put destiny in their own hands. They can win out and guarantee a share of the title with Appalachian State, which would have the tiebreaker.

If Georgia Southern loses two in a row — Saturday against the Mocs and the following week against ASU — Chattanooga will have a path to an outright title with another ASU loss, because Wofford is still on the Mocs’ schedule.



Wofford (6-1, 4-1) has more work to do than any other one-loss team in the SoCon.

The Terriers must win over the pesky Citadel Bulldogs to retain a share of the SoCon lead, because either GSU or Chattanooga will escape the weekend as the only one-loss team in the league if they don’t.

The seventh-ranked Terriers have ridden a weak schedule to the top of the SoCon so far, and did themselves a huge favor by beating Appalachian State in Boone, N.C., last Saturday.

Still, the Terriers have yet to face The Citadel, Samford and Chattanooga, a current "who’s who" of the middle of the SoCon. Their three straight wins over bottom feeders Western Carolina, Elon and Furman are a distant memory.

The Terriers still need a loss by Chattanooga and Georgia Southern to be able to call the SoCon all their own in 2012.

Confused yet? I know I am.


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