By Josh Orozco
Assistant Sports Director
The Bobcats enter the midway point of their five-game road swing with a trip to Alabama for Troy’s first home matchup in 2020.
As the ‘Cats search for their first win over the Trojans since 1997, let’s dive into three things to watch for during Texas State’s second conference game of the season versus Troy.
Finding a Finish
On paper, the Bobcats find themselves sitting at a 1-3 start for the fourth year in a row. However, optimism still looms around San Marcos following a competitive outing against a power five opponent in Boston College.
Texas State offensive coordinator Jacob Peeler hopes to find a way to “finish games off” in their upcoming conference contest.
“You’ve seen us take strides,” Peeler said. “I think we’re improving every single week and that’s all you can ask. We just need to be able to hit this conference stretch and just finish this thing off and find a way to win.”
Peeler also strongly believes in the play calling ability of head coach Jake Spavital, leading Texas State to its first win against Troy since the Bobcats joined the Sun Belt in 2013.
“The game planning with [Spavital] has been seamless,” Peeler said. “He’s probably one of the top, if not the top, play callers in college football.”
“Return of the Bink”
Texas State linebacker Markeveon “Binkie” Coleman is set to make his return to the field for his senior year debut after sitting out the first four weeks due to injury.
Coleman adds even more veteran presence in the linebacking corps consisting of players such as Gavin Graham and Brayden Stringer. Through four games, Texas State ranks within the top 15 in the entire country in tackles for loss.
The “Return of the Bink,” a phrase tweeted by Texas State offensive lineman Tate Heitmeier, is a positive sign for a Bobcat defense dealing with multiple bumps and bruises being dealt with throughout the bye this past week.
“It always helps to have depth,” Peeler said. “The biggest thing is just getting some of these guys that’s been out with injuries or whatever it may be, just allow them to get back into practice and the flow of things.”
Home Sweet Home
Things may be different this season under COVID-19 guidelines when it comes to fan attendance but that doesn’t take away from the fact of the Troy Trojans still being in their home element.
Despite an off-year for Troy last season at 5-7, the Trojans know how to get the job done at home. Troy has accumulated a combined record of 18-6 in the last four seasons on their home turf.
On the other hand, Texas State has not found much success on the road in recent years.
The Bobcats have the opportunity against the Trojans to win more than one road game in a season, something the maroon and gold have yet to achieve since the 2014 campaign.
“Significantly reduced capacity” is expected inside Veterans Memorial Stadium in week six.
Expect both teams to come out swinging through a higher tempo of offense. Texas State is anxious to step back onto the field following a sour loss two weeks ago while also attempting to break the 23-year win drought against Troy.
It’ll be quite the shocker if this game is anything similar in score from their last meeting where the Trojans blew out the Bobcats, 63-27.
Prediction: Troy 37, Texas State 34.
Radio coverage of Texas State’s road matchup against the Troy Trojans begins at 2 p.m. on KTSW FM89.9. Live tweets, updates and analysis on all things Texas State football can all be found on @KTSWSports on Twitter.
Featured image by Texas State Athletics.