A consistently dominant run game was too much for the Troy football team to overcome, as it fell to Georgia Southern 45-10 on Saturday, Nov. 14, in Veterans Memorial Stadium.
After racing out to a 10-0 lead in the opening minutes of the game, the Trojans (3-7, 2-4 Sun Belt) gave up 45 unanswered points to the Eagles (7-2, 5-1 Sun Belt), and with it Troy’s hopes for a bowl bid this season.
“We got beat by a better football team,” head coach Neal Brown said after the game. “They were a better, more physical team than us.
“They played more discipline than we did. The things we have done three weeks in a row to make ourselves relevant is we played good discipline football, we didn’t turn the ball over, we made plays in critical situations, and we didn’t do that tonight.”
Troy got on the board on its opening drive when Jed Solomon connected on a 20-yard, chip-shot field goal attempt, making the score 3-0 at the 11:46 mark in the first quarter.
On Georgia Southern’s first play from scrimmage, junior quarterback Kevin Ellison bobbled the football and was lost it in the backfield, allowing junior safety Demetrius Cain to scoop up the loose ball and return it 19 yards for a touchdown.
It was the last time that the home team would score in the contest.
The Eagles rallied behind their methodical, run-orientated offensive scheme, for which the Trojans had no answer. Junior running back Matt Breida put the visitors on the board with a three-yard TD run that came with 5:19 left in the opening quarter.
Breida, one of seven Eagle players who were involved in Georgia Southern’s dynamic run game, finished with 84 yards and a touchdown on 17 attempts. Junior kicker Younghoe Koo brought Georgia Southern even with Troy with a 23-yard field goal in the closing minutes of the first quarter.
Troy tried to get back on top in the game, but it was unable to execute well enough against the Eagles’ defense to get much going. Georgia Southern controlled both tempo and possession in the game, running 73 plays to Troy’s 47, with a time of possession of 42:55 compared to 17:05 for Troy.
Sophomore wide receiver Myles Campbell completed Georgia Southern’s comeback, scoring on a 20-yard run that put the visitors up 17-10 barely into the second quarter.
Four different Eagles scored the remainder of their 28 points in the game, with all but one of them being rushing touchdowns. Georgia Southern finished the game with a whopping 325 yards rushing, which was nearly 100 yards more than the Trojans’ 238.
“We are in the foundation level of building this program,” Brown said after the game. “We will finish this thing the right way.”
Troy will look to do so after a bye week this week. It will travel to take on Georgia State on Friday, Nov. 27, in the Georgia Dome in Atlanta. Kickoff is set for 1 p.m.