After a comeback win against Rice on homecoming for the Charlotte 49ers football team, they hit the road again for a test against the Louisiana Tech Bulldogs.
The Bulldogs come into this matchup with a 2-7 record, yet a touchdown favors them over the 49ers. This has to do with the quality opponents they play. LA Tech has lost to Mississippi State, SMU and North Carolina State by a touchdown.
Charlotte comes in at 5-4 with a solid chance of finishing 8-4 or 7-5 if they can execute their game plan at a high level.
“There are still some things to clean up,” Head Coach Will Healy said during his mid-week press conference. “(I’m) excited about the progress of this football team.”
The 49ers have not had the best luck stopping the run this season, and it has shown game after game as of late. They made progress, but the season is winding down, and the 49ers just need one more win to clinch bowl eligibility. They will need to stop the rushing threat of Marcus Williams II if they want to leave Ruston with a win.
Players to watch
Grant DuBose, Wide Reciever: DuBose is leading the team in touchdown receptions with five this season, and he will likely need one or two for the 49ers if they want to win. He is a hard worker that always plays even harder than expected and seems ready to go on Saturday.
“I feel good within my process,” DuBose said. “I feel good in my preparation for the game on Saturday.”
Trey Creamer, Defensive Back: The senior leader in the defensive back room had a good game against Rice, leading the defensive unit in PFF grade. For a team who gave up over 400 yards passing to Western Kentucky just a few short weeks ago, it is a good sign to see Creamer step up for his team. Look out for another big game from Creamer.
Bulldogs to watch
Marcus Williams II, Running Back: He will be a crucial factor for the Bulldogs against Charlotte. The 49ers like to beat teams in time of possession, but if Williams II can get going on the ground and milk time off the clock, the 49ers might have a hard time owning the battle of the clock.
Trey Baldwin, Linebacker: The preseason all-conference linebacker leads the team in solo tackles with 27. 49er running backs Shadrick Byrd and Calvin Camp will need to be quick on their feet against Baldwin. He is a two-time team captain and will look to be a force against the 49ers not just in the run game but also in defending the pass.
Keys to a 49er Victory
Stop the run: It may sound simple enough at this point because many writers and reporters have beat this dead horse for a while now, but it remains a point of emphasis for the 49ers. With a talented back like Williams II in the backfield, it will not be an easy day for Charlotte by any means. They will need to put three and four hats on the ball and tackle hard.
Solid halftime adjustments: Before the game against Rice, the 49ers had been shut out three times in the second half.
Against Illinois, Florida Atlantic and Western Kentucky, the 49ers failed to manage a field goal in the second half of those games. Considering the Georgia State game, they did not score on offense in the second half of that game either. This will be a point of emphasis for Will Healy and his team this game and the remainder of the season.
Looking to Gameday
The 49ers will travel to Ruston on Friday, and the game time is set for 3:30 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 13. Tune in on the radio on 730 The Game to catch the action.