Jeff Reed: Everything Is Back on Track For Arkansas State, Right?


Jeff Reed Author PageAs if on cue, Arkansas State’s football season took a turn toward the positive once conference play started.

The Red Wolves rallied and defeated Georgia Southern, one of the Sun Belt’s haves, 27-26 a week ago Wednesday in Jonesboro. The winning play came with 5 second left.

So is everything back on track for the Red Wolves as they head into Saturday night’s home game with South Alabama?


And no.

Winning always makes everything better and beating Georgia Southern, the league champion in 2014 and an expected contender this season, was no doubt a step in the right direction.

But it was not a cure all.

There are still plenty of issues to fix, and it’s easy to see an ultra Georgia Southern game plan in the final quarter set up the Red Wolves for the victory.

But that is like saying if a team can make field goals it can win games right? It all comes down to what happens on the field.

And for the most part, what has happened on the field the last 2.5 games for the Red Wolves can be read as encouraging. The second half at Utah State was not enough to overcome the first half against the Aggies, which might have been the worst half of football by A-State since the last century.

The numbers were good, well all except one, in the UCA game. The four turnovers, two in the red zone, on the Bears’ side of the field spoiled that outcome.

And the numbers were really good in the victory over Georgia Southern, but that was almost derailed by five turnovers.

And turnovers were something the Red Wolves lived off of last season. But it wasn’t making them it was getting them. But the last two games it’s been 9-0 on turnovers and 12-1 going back to the last three. A year ago Arkansas State forced 34 and turned eight of those into touchdowns.

There are other numbers that add to the story. The defense has just six sacks, the third-down success rate is dangerously bad and and time of possession — A-State often overlooked in playing good defense — is leaning the wrong way.

But those are just numbers. And in the big picture the Red Wolves are 1-0 in league play.

And for now that is all that matters in Jonesboro.

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Jeff Reed is editor of

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