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5 Ways Southern Could Upset Jackson State in the 2022 SWAC Football Championship?

How would the Jaguars go into Jackson, MS and get the upset on Saturday

JACKSON, MS - Underdogs can win. If you study college football in November and December, underdogs can shock the dominant teams in conference championship games. Last night, as the news of Deion Sanders expecting to accept the Colorado head coaching position broke, Utah was whooping USC in the Pac-12 Championship game.

Not a big deal? The loss knocked USC out of the FBS Playoff race and sent the Trojans packing.

Eric Dooley and Southern

Could Southern duplicate the Utes' effort and send the 11-0 Jackson State Tigers void of the SWAC Football Championship title and Celebration Bowl visit? It's a possibility.

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How could the Southern Jaguars provide the upset at the 2022 SWAC Football Championship against Jackson State?

Here are five keys to making the upset happen:

  1. Defensive Takeaways: Southern leads the FCS in defensive touchdowns with four interceptions returned and three fumbles returned. The Jaguars must give their offense extra possessions with takeaways.
  2. Limit Jackson State's third-down conversions.  Preventing continuity and throwing off the Tigers' rhythm is important.
  3. Make Sanders uncomfortable, early and often. Only a few teams have used Buddy Pough's defensive scheme he used against Shedeur in the 2021 Celebration Bowl, which is a mystery. If you attack him with stunts and edge blitzes, he may make a mistake - which is rare.
  4. QB Besean McCray must be a balanced quarterback and use Pitre's size over the JSU cornerbacks.
  5. Southern has to find consistency in third downs to extend drives and milk time off the clock.

Southern is No. 4 in the FCS for total defense. They allow 288.0 yards per game. Guess who's No. 1? That's right, Jackson State. Dennis Thurman's squad has been dominant by surrendering 216.9 yards per game. Expect the defensive mastermind to force Dooley's offense to become one-dimensional. If so, Southern will have difficulty.

Will the Jags win today?

We shall see.