The Appalachian State Mountaineers look to cap off a great season with a victory over the Ohio Bobcats at the Raycom Media Camelia Bowl.
The Appalachian State Mountaineers return to the football field on Saturday to play their first bowl game as an FBS member. They make this debut in Montgomery, Alabama at the relatively new Camelia Bowl again the Ohio Bobcats of the Mid-American Conference.
The Mountaineers finished off their season at 10-2 and finished second place in the Sun Belt Conference overall. Their only losses on the year were to #1 Clemson and the eventual Sun Belt champ Arkansas State. Because of the Sun Belt’s few tie-ins, their success landed them a date with 8-4 Ohio, the second place team out of the MAC’s East Division.
Opponent: Ohio Bobcats (8-4)
Date: December 19th
Time: 5:30 PM
Venue: Crampton Bowl (Montgomery, AL)
The Mountaineers had a big season that overcame expectations. They were leading the conference race for much of the year until they lost to Arkansas State. They had big wins in conference and convincing wins in conference. They beat former FCS rival Georgia Southern this season, and quarterback Taylor Lamb could claim victory over South Alabama, a school that he was once committed to as a recruit.
The Mountaineers did not pull many punches, as they were still driven by a rushing attack first that averaged 268 yards per game. Junior Marcus Cox as the key man once again as he ran for over twelve hundred yards on the season. The Mountaineers got another thirteen hundred from Jalin Moore, Terrence Upshaw, and Lamb’s combined production.
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The Bobcats are no strangers to the run game, as Coach Frank Solich was once the head coach at Nebraska during the end of the option era. He still likes to pound the ball at his current job. He relies on A.J. Ouelette and Daz’mond Patterson, but the two of them produced roughly half of the running firepower that Appalachian State has been playing with all year.
Solich will be relying on defense to bring him home and limited the Mountaineer attack. If he can’t do that then the ball will be put in the hands of quarterback Darius Vick. With only around 1800 yards on the season, Vick has not been in that spot much. It will be less friendly if Appalachian State turns Ronald Blair loose on him.
Besides, App has been a complete team this season. Lamb was the best quarterback in the conference statistically and a heck of plan B if the running game were to shut down.
Hope your holidays start off right as App faces Ohio this Saturday to kick off the bowl season for North Carolina.