All you need to know about Maine’s playoff opponent: Jacksonville State

Here’s the inside scoop on Jacksonville State who will come to Orono to battle the Black Bears in the FCS playoffs next Saturday at noon. Their nickname is the Gamecocks and they are now 9-3.

Jacksonville State is in Alabama, not Florida. They have just under 7000 students.

The team rallied from a halftime deficit to knock off East Tennessee State 34-27 in the first round of the FCS playoffs.

WR Shaq Davidson, who missed the prior month with an illness, caught three touchdown passes from QB Zerrick Cooper. Marlon Bridges returned an interception for a touchdown.

Cooper has thrown for more than 3000 yards this season. That’s a Gamecock record.

This is their sixth straight year in the FCS playoffs. They are 6-5 in playoff games since 2012.

Jacksonville State went 10-2 in 2017. They were picked in the preseason polls this year to win their conference and did so easily.

They play their homes games at Burgess-Snow Stadium. It seats just over 24,000 people. The field is turf.

They are 6-0 at home this year and 3-1 on the road.

One of those road games was played in a very cold day in Tennessee. It was 37’ and windy. It didn’t slow down the offense though as the Gamecocks amassed 41 points in the road win.

The forecast for next Saturday is a mix of sun and clouds and 32’.

John Grass is their head coach. He was born on Feb 29 so he is a “Leap year baby.”

Jeff Solari

About Jeff Solari

Jeff Solari is the president and founder of the Sports Chowdah, Maine’s only free, weekly sports e mail newsletter. Recently, the Mount Desert Island native was the co-host of "The Drive" on 92.9 FM in Bangor.