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Preview: Prairie View vs. Jackson State

The 2021 SWAC Football Championship game preview, prediction, odds, series history, and more facts between Prairie View A&M versus Jackson State University.

The 2021 SWAC Football Championship game will feature two the conference's top teams and coaching staffs.   Jackson State (10-1, 8-0 SWAC) will host Prairie A&M (7-4, 6-2 SWAC) on Saturday, Dec. 4 for a 3:00 PM CT kickoff at Mississippi Veterans Memorial Stadium in Jackson, Mississippi.

ESPN will televise the contest on ESPN2 with announcers Tiffany Greene, Jay Walker and Tiffany Blackmon.

On DirecTV, ESPN2 is channel 209. On Dish, ESPN2 is channel 143.

Look below for more important details, which includes how to watch this matchup on FuboTV.

SWAC Championship

WHAT'S ON THE LINE

  • The winner of the 2021 SWAC Championship game will represent the conference in the 2021 Cricket Celebration Bowl against the 2021 MEAC Champions South Carolina State Bulldogs.
  • The Tigers (10-1, 8-0 SWAC) hope to win its first SWAC Championship since 2007.
  • If Jackson State wins the SWAC Championship and Celebration Bowl, they could be crowned the 2021 Black College Football National Champions.

WHO ARE THE TEAMS

  • SWAC Eastern Division Champion: Jackson State University Tigers
  • SWAC Western Division Champion: Prairie View A&M University Panthers

WHO ARE THE COACHES

  • Jackson State Tigers Head Coach: Deion Sanders - SWAC Coach of the Year
  • Prairie View Panthers Head Coach: Eric Dooley

RANKINGS

  • Jackson State Tigers: Consensus No. 1 in HBCU Football Polls; No. 14 in FCS Coaches Poll; No. 15 in FCS STATS PERFORM Poll
  • Prairie View: No. 4 in HBCU Legends Power Ranking

GAME ODDS

  1. Sports Illustrated's Sport Book projects Jackson State as an 8 point favorite in the SWAC Championship game.
  2. Money Line: Prairie View (+250), Jackson State (-376)
  3. Over/Under: 43.5 points

Jackson State-Prairie View A&M Series & History

  • This marks the 62nd time the Tigers and Panthers will match-up on the gridiron and first time in the SWAC championship. 
  • JSU leads the all-time series 40-19-2 and have won two in a row. JSU has traditionally dominated the series and won 28 games in a row between 1972 and 2004. 
  • The Panthers have seen some recent success, winning four in a row between 2014 and 2017.

Jackson State and Prairie View A&M Stats

  • The Tigers average 3.0 more points per game (29.2) than the Panthers give up (26.2).
  • This year, the Tigers have turned the ball over three times, two more than the Panthers' takeaways (1).
  • The Panthers have put an average of 26.8 points per game on the board this year, 13.0 more than the 13.8 the Tigers have surrendered.
  • The Panthers have turned the ball over one time this season, one more turnover than the Tigers have forced (0).  

Data from SI.com

Read More

KEY PLAYERS TO WATCH

Jackson State's Shedeur Sanders

Jackson State Tigers

  • QB Shedeur Sanders - SWAC Freshman of the Year; 2nd-team All-SWAC; Jerry Rice Award Finalist
  • LB/DE James Houston - SWAC Newcomer of the Year; All-SWAC; Buck Buchanon Award Finalist
  • LB Aubrey Miller Jr - All-SWAC First Team
  • LB Keonte Hampton - All-SWAC Second Team
  • DL Antwan Owens - All-SWAC First Team
  • WR Keith Corbin - All-SWAC Second Team
  • WR Malachi Wideman
  • WR Warren Newman
  • OL Tony Gray - All-SWAC Second Team
  • S Shilo Sanders - All-SWAC Second Team
  • P/K Return Specialist Isaiah Bolden - All-SWAC First Team
Jawon Pass

Prairie View Panthers

  • QB Jawon Pass
  • DB Drake Cheatum - All-SWAC First Team
  • DL Jason Dumas - All-SWAC First Team
  • DE Jessie Evans
  • RB Jaden Stewart
  • DB Tre'Shaud Smith
  • DB Darius Campbell - All-SWAC Second Team
  • OL Danny Garza - All-SWAC Second Team
  • K/P Luis Reyes

GAME PREDICTION

  • The play of the quarterback position is the key to winning for Jackson State.  Shedeur Sanders led the SWAC with a 68.7 completion percentage while passing for 2,971 yards (2nd in SWAC), 28 touchdowns (2nd in SWAC) and only five interceptions. 
  • Jawon Pass has thrown for 1,969 yards (179.0 ypg) to lead Prairie View A&M, completing 63% of his passes and collecting 12 touchdown passes and eight interceptions this season. He's also contributed in the ground game with 175 rushing yards (15.9 ypg) on 55 carries with four rushing touchdowns.
  • Sanders averaged 270.1 passing yards (2nd in SWAC) per game while leading the Tigers to an undefeated 8-0 record in league play and their first SWAC Championship appearance since 2013.
  • Prairie View's defensive unit will keep the game close in the first-half of action.  Jackson State's offense typically is a slow-starting squad.   
  • Expect JSU QB Shedeur Sanders to have success connecting to wideouts Keith Corbin, Warren Newman and Malachi Wideman in PV's open intermediate zones.
  • The Panthers' offensive line must give Jawon Pass excellent protection against the terrorizing Jackson State pass rush featuring All-SWAC's James Houston, Aubrey Miller Jr., and Keonte Hampton to have a chance.
  • Pass has thrown for 2,555 yards (232.3 yards/game), 62.9% completion rate, 16 touchdowns, and nine interceptions.
  • If Prairie View cannot effectively rush the football against a stingy Jackson State defensive line, it will be a long day for the Panthers.
  • Neither team is commits too many turnovers.  However, PV is very disciplined team.
  • Watch the defensive backs for Jackson State with Shilo Sanders and Prairie View with Drake Cheatum.  They could be sneaky enough to create havoc against passing attacks.
  • The Panthers' redzone offense is 5th in the SWAC. In 11 games, 31 of 41 visits (75.6%) and 19 touchdowns; 12 of 13 on field goal attempts. The negatives for PV in the redzone are 4 fumbles, 1 interception, and 3 turnovers on downs. 

You cannot rule out an upset in a game of this magnitude.  The Panthers are well coached and have the propensity to hits big plays on tough defenses.  

Eventually, I believe the Jackson State team's playmakers will closeout the game in the fourth quarter against a tremendous effort by Coach Dooley's Panthers.

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PREDICTION

Jackson State 34, Prairie View 24


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