The Grambling State Tigers travel to Little Rock, Ark., this weekend to face the Arkansas Pine-Bluff Golden Lions. Grambling defeated Mississippi Valley State 40-0 last week, while Pine-Bluff was idle.Brandon Landers from a statistical standpoint had arguably his worst performance of the season in last week’s 40-0 victory over Mississippi Valley. Landers completed a season low 43.5 percent of his passes. The fortunate thing for Landers this year is that he is not expected to win games, only to manage them.
Frank Warren had his second 100-yard game of the season. Warren and Cornelius Walker have provided Grambling with a respectable running attack. That rushing attack will be called upon heavily again this weekend.
Arkansas Pine-Bluff has given up 515 yards on the ground in their last three games. Linebackers Tim Turner and Anton Williams had 13 and 12 tackles, respectively, in UAPB’s loss to New Mexico State two weeks ago.
The key for Grambling in this game is to allow their running game to set up the passing game. If Grambling does that, it will force Pine Bluff to stick eight players in the box, leaving their secondary in one-on-one coverage against Clyde Edwards and Reginal Jackson, which is a match up that GSU should win easily.
The dynamic duo of Martell Mallet and Mickey Dean were supposed to be SWAC’s version of Reggie Bush and Lendale White, and Jason Jones was arguably one of the best receivers in the conference. Five games into this season, nothing has gone the way the Golden Lions expected.
In three conference games thus far, UAPB is averaging 193 total yards, and they have only scored 60 points this season.
Grambling finally pitched its first shutout of the season last week. Grambling forced four turnovers and allowed a combined 3.2 yards per completion from Valley’s three quarterbacks last week. Although Pine Bluff’s offense has stalled consistently throughout the season, they still possess the type of athletes that could cause problems for Grambling.
Grambling’s front seven must put pressure on Moore, and contain Pine Bluff’s rushing attack if Grambling intends to continue its winning ways.
Grambling has split with UAPB the last four times they have met. Grambling can not afford to look ahead to Jackson State next week; they must take care of Pine Bluff.
If Grambling can establish the run early and exploit the mismatches in Pine Bluff’s secondary, GSU should win easily.