We are fortunate to have Jason Munz from the Hattiesburg American on the blog today. Munz covers Southern Miss for the paper. It’s a tough job these days with the Golden Eagles in the midst of an 18-game losing streak.
You can find Munz’s work on the Southern Miss section of the newspaper’s website.
Here’s Munz’s take on tomorrow’s game:
1. What the heck has happened to Southern Miss the last year and a half?
Boy, that’s a tough one – where do you start? Obviously, there isn’t one clear-cut answer here. Last season, a lot of it had to do with a very bumpy transition from Larry Fedora to Ellis Johnson. The players had a hard time with the switch, and it showed on the field. And it all just kind of snowballed after that.
2. Tell us about Southern Miss quarterback Nick Mullens.
Nick’s a talented guy. True freshman. 6-foot, 190-pounder. Heady player. In his limited action so far this season, he’s shown good poise, pocket presence, decision-making, etc. Of course, being such a young player, he’s made his share of mistakes. But one thing the coaching staff likes about him is his mobility and escapability once the pocket breaks down.
3. Why has Southern Miss had such a problem with turnovers?
Again, where do you start? The offensive line has struggled and the quarterback up to this point (Allan Bridgford) has had issues with staring down receivers. Throw in a dash of bad luck and some skilled defenses, and it’s been an ugly recipe.
4. Is Southern Miss really pointing to this game with the blackout and homecoming as an opportunity to right the ship?
This being Homecoming and the year’s Blackout game, that was all decided before the season, when obviously optimism was higher. But, yeah, Southern Miss expects to win Saturday.
5. How do you think this game will go?
I believe Southern Miss has a chance to win, but I won’t go as far as predicting a win until the Golden Eagles actually break what is now an 18-game losing streak. With a new quarterback, I think anything can happen. His mobility is going to fix some problems (sacks, turnovers, incompletions). If the Southern Miss defense can play like it did against Arkansas and Texas State, it could be a pretty good game. If not, it could be another long day for the Golden Eagles.