CARROLLTON, Ga. - The 2017 regular season comes to a close on Saturday with the whole season on the line between two teams who have had a solid year up until this point. It all comes down to Saturday on Ra-Lin Field inside University Stadium at 2 p.m., as the West Georgia Wolves host the West Florida Argonauts in the regular season finale.
The West Georgia Wolves come into the game in the thick of the race to the playoffs, ranked fourth in the most recent regional poll. West Florida has an impressive resume and currently sits in 10th place in the region. For West Georgia, a win would be another positive step toward hosting in this year’s playoffs, but a loss could potentially put the Wolves out. The Argos are currently on the outside looking in, but a win against a ranked opponent could be just the ticket to a playoff bid in just their second year of Division II play.
LAST WEEK West Georgia moved to 8-2 last week with a dramatic victory over Florida Tech, with junior cornerback Jakyron Young intercepting a Mark Cato pass with 42 seconds left in the game and taking it in for a touchdown, giving the Wolves a 20-13 victory. West Florida handled North Alabama last week, winning 30-7 in the GSC-TV Live Game of the Week.
THE COACHES West Georgia is coached by Gulf South Conference veteran David Dean, who is in his first season at the helm of the UWG program. This is his 10th season as a head coach, as he spent nine years at Valdosta State until the 2015 season. Dean is 8-2 at West Georgia and has a record of 87-29 overall as a head coach. Pete Shinnick is the head coach of the Argos, and is 11-9 in two seasons of Division II play with the Argos.
DEFENSE WINS CHAMPIONSHIPS West Georgia’s defense seems to be hitting it’s stride at the perfect time, as the Wolves have give up just 24 first downs in the past three weeks and a grand total of 501 total yards in that same span. In addition, the Wolves have allowed just three offensive touchdowns in that span, with the opponent needing to drive a total of 26 yards on two of the three scoring drives.
ROLAND SNAGS A BIG GAME Senior receiver Shaq Roland has been the Wolves’ leading receiver throughout the year, and has had at least four receptions in seven of West Georgia’s 10 games in 2017. He has had at least 50 receiving yards in six of those, with last week’s 12-catch, 122-yard performance at the top of the ist. He has had three games with at least 70 yards recieving and leads the team with four touchdown receptions.