Get To Know: Ga. Southern

Let’s learn a little more about the Bobcats upcoming opponent, the Georgia Southern Eagles.

The Eagles are perhaps the most dominate team in the Sun Belt Conference this season, and have been that way in every conference and time frame that they have played football. With an all-time record of 275-101-1 good for a 73.1 winning percentage. The Eagles are 7-2 on this season and are 6-0 in SBC play, they look to continue that streak this week when they travel to San Marcos to take on Texas State.

Eagle's History
The school has gone by a number of different nicknames. From as early as 1907 the athletic teams of the then First District A&M school were referred to as the Culture to reflect the agricultural background of the school. From 1924 to 1941, the nickname was the Blue Tide. After World War II, athletic teams were referred to as the Professors, reflecting the school's status as a teachers college. However, in 1959 when the school was renamed Georgia Southern College, a student vote was held to determine the new mascot. Among the 104 entries, voters chose Eagles over Colonels by a narrow margin. When the program was revived in 1982, the school did not have a large budget and coach Erik Russell ordered solid blue helmets and asked the players to put a white strip of tape down the middle. At the time of the restart of GSU Football, the equipment budget was so limited that only practice pants could be purchased. Hence, players wore the same practice pants as game pants, a simple limited monetary approach which has become a nationally recognized tradition. The uniforms consisted of plain white pants and blue jerseys without names. With the success of the Eagles, the basic simple design of the uniforms has remained the same. Sports Illustrated has ranked the uniforms as being the 3rd best in college football.

Location, Info, Records, and Notable Alumni.
Georgia Southern home football games are played at Paulson Stadium. Paulson Stadium was dedicated on September 29, 1984, and has an official seating capacity of 25,000. The school is located in Statesboro, Georgia. Where the record attendance was in the 1989 I-AA National Championship game as Georgia Southern hosted Stephen F. Austin University, where the attendance reached 25,725. Paulson Stadium is currently undergoing a major expansion project that includes the addition of mid-deck and more than 6,000 new seats.

The Eagles are coached by Willie Fritz in his first full season at the helm, and have posted an impressive 7-2 overall record. Georgia Southern has posted 6 national Titles, all in Div II, and 10 Conference Championships all in the Southern Conference where they played from 1992-2013. The School has had an impressive 65 Consensus All-Americans. Some notable Alumni to mention are, Jerick McKinnon RB for the Minnesota Vikings, Darius Eubanks A LB for the Cleveland Browns, J.J. Wilcox a Safety for The Dallas Cowboys, the late Rob Bironas, and many more.

Rivals
The College of Georgia Southern has two main rivals, those Being Appalachian St. and Georgia St. Appalachian State is the main rival of the two. App St., despite being located in a separate state, has a similar academic profile, both having developed from teacher colleges, and both have an enrollment of approximately 20,000. In addition, both Appalachian and Ga. Southern have historically held a very strong presence in the Division I Football Championship Subdivision, having combined to win nine national championships, four Walter Payton Awards, and two Buck Buchanan Awards. On March 27, 2013 both schools were invited to join the Sun Belt Conference of the Football Bowl Subdivision beginning in 2014.

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