Rain delayed the Georgia Southern Eagles first scrimmage of the spring on Saturday, so coach Clay Helton moved things back to Monday afternoon at Paulson Stadium with a 90-play scrimmage.
“It was a very important day for us in terms of evaluation,” Helton said. “I was really proud of how we did offensively, and they should be in front of where the defense is at this point with so many players returnring. Defensively I thought there were some good one-on-one plays and I thought they did a nice job in the red zone.”
Tulsa transfer quarterback Davis Brin got the reps with the Eagle first team primarily with fellow transfer J.C. French working the majority of the time with the Eagle second team unit. The two combined to throw for just over 250 yards and four touchdowns in the scrimmage which also saw Colton Fitzgerald throw for a touchdown and Connor Cigelske and Beau Allen took snaps at quarterback as well.
“I thought Davis did a wonderful job today,” Helton said. “You can just see his game experience and hw he plays the game so well. He protects the football and didn’t have a turnover today and really helped lead the team down the field. J.C. and Fitz both had flashes of looking really sharp. I thought they did a good job and I am looking forward to looking at the tape from today and evaluating them further as well as Conner and Beau.”
Last year’s starter at running back Jalen White is being held out of spring drills and sophomore O.J. Arnold got the majority of the reps with the first team. Redshirt freshman Terrance Gibbs had a few impressive runs and Tyler Jordan also rushed for a score. The running backs combined for 173 yards and five touchdowns in the scrimmage and Helton feels they have a talented room.
“We have such a solid running backs room,” Helton said. “I am so proud for Terrance as he had a devastating knee injury in high school and has spent the past two years rehabbing. He is out there being productive and he runs like a big back kind of like Jalen. Obviously, O.J. brings so much to the table. He is so electric, I hold my breath every time he touches the ball. To be able to also have T.D. Dixon and Tyler Jordan out there and Robert Edwards, that is a really solid room right now.”
The defense continued to adjust to the scheme and terminology of new defensive coordinator Brandon Bailey. Elhadj Fall and Trevon Locke each had a sack while Jacob Ferguson and Davion Rhodes both had pass breakups. The defense was unable to come up with any turnovers Monday.
“Bringing in a new system and having only one week to get ready before spring isn’t idea,” Helton said. “I think we have had some flashes of great looks over there. Now it is just about the consistency, and we need to get a little healthier on that side of the ball. We tried to slow things up a little bit over there to allow them to catch their breath but I look forward to the next two scrimmages to watch them grow within the system.”
The Eagles will hold the second of their three scrimmages Saturday morning at Paulson Stadium.