Continuing the Georgia State football A-to-Z series.
Quick recap: the Panthers went 6-7 last season with that last loss coming in the team’s first bowl game, the Cure Bowl in Orlando against San Jose State.
Coach Trent Miles will return seven-eight starts on offense (depending upon your definition of what makes a starter) and nine on defense.
The team should be picked to finish in the top half of the media polls and, if not for the lock that Appalachian State will likely have on first-place votes, might even receive a vote or two in that category.
Anyway, off we go:
J is for Jesse Minter
Along with many things about Georgia State’s program, Minter went from someone whose knowledge of the game was being repeatedly questioned on message boards at the beginning of the season to being applauded at the end of the season.
That’ll happen when a defense goes from allowing 43.3 points and 497.1 yards per game in 2014, to allowing 28.3 points and 405.6 yards per game in 2015.
How did that improvement happen?
Coach Trent Miles said, and will say, that it goes to player development, experience, maturity, etc. The front three/four played a lot of freshmen the first year, and those 17- and 18-year-olds have gotten stronger and wiser over three years.
Minter said before the season that he may made a few tweaks to the base scheme. He wouldn’t elaborate on those tweaks.
The defense was also helped by an infusion of more talent with several transfers from UAB (Alonzo McGee, Julien Laurent, Bobby Baker) and junior colleges (Kaleb Ringer).
This year’s defense will be helped by the hiring of Jesse’s father, Rick, to coach the defensive line. Rick Minter’s resume is long and impressive, with stints as a college head coach, defensive coordinator and most recently as a position coach in the NFL.
Jesse Minter will have nine starters returning this season, which means those averages allowed last season will likely be even better this season.