Georgia State football will launch a huge weekend of college football on Thursday night at the Georgia Dome when they face South Carolina State at 7:30pm ET.
The Panthers are coming off a disappointing 3-8 campaign in 2011 and are determined to prove last season is behind them and starting redshirt Freshman quarterback Ben McLane feels he can lift the team's confidence:
"That’s the job of a quarterback," McLane said. "You have to make other people believe in you and make them believe in themselves. And then the whole team can start believing and win some football games."
McLane will have a stiff test in front of him as he has not taken a live snap in a game since high school where he led Brookwood HS to the Georgia AAAAA state title. McLane has plenty of weapons to lean on offensively including a stable of running backs led by Donald Russell and the wide receiving trio of Albert Wilson, Danny Williams and Jordan Giles.
Defensively, the Panthers will unleash their new 4-2-5 defensive scheme under defensive coordinator Anthony Midget. This defense, employed by TCU, South Carolina and Midget's alma mater Virginia Tech, is designed to slow the spread and read option which South Carolina State triggers with QB Richard Cue.
Expect another huge crowd as the Panthers have traditionally drawn very well on week night home games and the game has been picked up locally on CSS which could lead to a larger audience.