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‘Jacks ready to take next step by winning at Jacksonville State

Published: Oct. 7, 2021 at 8:18 PM CDT
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NACOGDOCHES, Texas (KTRE) - The No. 23 ranked SFA football team will be featured in a top 25 matchup when they visit No. 24 Jacksonville State on Saturday.

The Jacks enter the game 3-2, coming off a 21-20 loss to Sam Houston. Jacksonville State is 2-3 for the first time in 14 seasons.

“Coming out of the Sam game was like coming out of the Tech game,” head coach Colby Carthel said. “You got some confidence. Getting ranked this week is a tip of the cap from across the country to what we have been doing and what we are building. You still have to go out week in and week out and prove that you can win one of those big games. We have to do that this Saturday.”

Jacksonville State might be down but the Gamecocks are still a solid program. Earlier this season they handed Florida State their first ever loss to an FCS program. The game results will count in the ASun-WAC challenge. The winner of the conference cross over will win the automatic bid to the FCS playoffs. Sam Houston leads in the standing at 2-0. SFA is at the bottom at 0-1. This will be the first game in the competition for Jacksonville State.

“They have played for national championships and beaten big schools,” Carthel said. “We have our hands full with this bunch. The trip is going to be long so there is that. It is their homecoming so we hope we can go in and get a big win.”

Both JSU and SFA have been able to score on both offense and defense. The two schools are two of seven that lead the nation with three touchdowns on defense. JSU has two touchdowns off of fumble recoveries and one off an interception. SFA’s three defensive touchdowns have all come off of interceptions.

“Last week we put them in so many bad spots with some kick coverage and short fields and they just answered the bell every single time. I think we have a top five or top 10 defense and we are going to continue to grow the special teams and offense right there behind them. We will ride it as long as we can and play football as long as we can this fall.”

Kickoff is set for 3 p.m. Saturday and the game will be streamed on ESPN+.

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