The Tennessee State University Tigers embark on Ohio Valley Conference this Saturday when they head to Cape Girardeau, Missouri to take on Southeast Missouri State.
The Tigers will face a Redhawks team that is fresh off a 59-28 shellacking from Missouri. This latest beatdown was actually a better showing from SEMO against their in-state SEC foe, for over the last four meetings with Missouri SEMO averaged 1.5 ppg. The Red Hawks have not faved much better in their two previous contests this season, losing 47-21 to Southern Illinois in their season opener and getting blasted by FCS National Champion Stephen F. Austin,52-14.
If the Redhawk defense continues its trend of being very offensively user-friendly, then there could be plenty of opportunities for the TSU offense to put points on the board. SEMO has given up at least 47 points and no fewer than 553 yards of offense in their first three games.
Tennessee State quarterback Geremy Hickbottom will have to further solidify his grip on the starting job and continue the solid play he displayed against Kentucky State in the John Merritt Classic, where he completed 15-off-24 passes for 264 yards and 3 touchdowns. While they likely will not accumulate 271 yards and average 6.3 yards per carry against Kentucky State, Devon Starling and the tiger run game will have to be productive component of the TSU offense. Starling was outstanding against the Thoroughbreds, running for 144 yards on 23 carries.
Tennessee State played relatively mistake-free football in terms of turnovers; they had none, but they did, however, committ seven penalties for 62 yards, which went up from the 5/43 yards against Jackson State.
If the trends hold true for both teams. Tennessee State should win a comfortable game against a SEMO ball club that will show a bit more verve than they had in their first three games.
Score prediction : TSU 31, SEMO 20