Battle in the Bayou! Watchers Guide to the 50th Bayou Classic

By Joseph Alexander

With the 50th Bayou Classic approaching, this game is an important turning point for both teams. For Grambling, winning this Bayou Classic would serve as a turning point for the program and head coach Hue Jackson after two underwhelming seasons in the SWAC. For Southern, not only would a win here assure our lead in the classic all-time (which sits at 25-24), but it would give the program something to build on as we seek new leadership. Going into the game, both teams are 5-5 and 4-3 in the conference. The SWAC West has been decided, with Prairie View winning this past weekend, securing their spot in the SWAC Championship. Going into this game for Grambling, the game plan will remain the same. With two running backs (Chance Williams and Floyd Chalk IV) with over 500 yards and over 5 yards per carry. They’ll be relying on their run game to wear down the Southern “Dog Day” defense, opening opportunities for their quarterback Myles Crawley late in the game. For Grambling, utilizing the running game to keep Southern’s defense on the field, and the offense off the field is crucial to their victory. On the other side, however, the game plan has seemingly changed. With the recent firing of Coach Dooley after what many fans think was a disappointing tenure, much is unknown about what the new interim head coach has in store for a new game plan on offense as Coach Dooley was the offensive coordinator for the Jags. We know that the legendary Willie Totten will be the offensive play-caller coming into the game. What can be said, however, is that for the Jags, the defense on both sides will play a huge part in the result of the game. Southern bolsters one of the best defenses in the SWAC. Southern is 3rd best in both points per game, and yards per game allowed behind both FAMU and Alabama State. Grambling, on the other hand, while being the 3rd best offense in the SWAC, has the 4th worst defense as well. If Southern can manage to hold Grambling to under 20 points and get past their previous offensive woes (Currently sitting 6th in points per game), there is an extremely high chance they go home with a win and make the season memorable.