The Matchup: Prairie View (2-3, 1-1 SWAC) at Southern (2-3, 1-0 SWAC)
Day/Time/Where: Saturday, 6 p.m., A.W. Mumford Stadium
What’s At Stake: This is a matchup of the two top teams in the West Division of the SWAC. The Jaguars are at the top but PV can move into the lead with a victory. The Panthers are rested after a bye-week and come into the game as healthy as they have been since the start of the season.
What To Watch For: The Panthers offense, led by quarterback Jalen Morton and running back Dawonya Tucker, has been one of the most prolific in the SWAC, averaging 35.8 points per game. But they are coming up against the second stingiest defense in the league. The Jaguars are holding opponents to just 24.6 points per game.
The Bottom Line: While Southern’s defense is good, the Panthers offense will be too explosive to contain. Tucker, who leads the SWAC in yards on the ground, will be the difference as the Panthers move into first place in the division with the win.
The Matchup: Missouri S&T (4-1) at Texas Southern (0-5)
Day/Time/Where: Saturday, 2 p.m., Durley Stadium (campus)
What’s At Stake: The TSU Tigers forced Alabama A&M into overtime last week but still managed to come up short. They have now lost all five this season and have suffered eight defeats in a row dating back to last season. The bottom line is the Tigers need a win and they have Division II Missouri S&T coming into their place for Homecoming. The Miners are riding a four-game winning streak and play tough hardnosed football.
What To Watch For: TSU coach Clarence McKinney hasn’t made any announcement about a quarterback change but it was junior Devin Williams on the field putting the Tigers in position for the upset last week instead of SWAC-leading passer DeAndre Johnson, who was banged up but has practiced this week. Williams, who threw the touchdown pass to tie the game in the fourth quarter against Alabama A&M, finished last week with 252 yards and two touchdowns in his most extensive action this season. Johnson has put up big numbers in his first and only season with the Tigers but they have not translated to wins. Williams and Johnson had a close competition for the job during fall camp but Johnson ultimately won out.
The Bottom Line: The Miners are a rugged team and are riding a four-game winning streak but the Tigers have too many athletes. Look for receiver Donnie Coley to have a big game to snap TSU’s losing streak.