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Football Opponent Preview: Cure Bowl

December 17, 2019  Lynchburg, Va.  RSS
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Football Game Notes vs. Georgia Southern

Liberty (7-5) will square off against Georgia Southern (7-5, 5-3 Sun Belt) in the FBC Mortgage Cure Bowl at Exploria Stadium in Orlando, Fla., the Flames' first-ever bowl game appearance.

"4 Downs" with the Eagles    

1. Liberty and Georgia Southern are meeting for the first time in 23 years. The Eagles are the fourth team the Flames are facing for the first time in 20+ seasons in 2019, along with Maine (27 years), Buffalo (21 years), and Hampton (21 years). Only four current Flames (Elijah Benton, Dontae Duff, Zac Foutz, and Cheapell Morris) were born prior to the last Liberty-GS clash on Nov. 16, 1996.

2. Both teams feature QBs who are difficult to intercept. Liberty's Stephen Calvert went 295 passes between picks earlier this season (Sept. 7-Nov. 23), while the Eagles' Shai Werts has thrown 226 passes since his last INT during the 2017 season finale at Coastal Carolina (Dec. 2, 2017). Georgia Southern has won both of its previous bowl appearances, topping Bowling Green in the 2015 GoDaddy Bowl and Eastern Michigan in last year's Camellia Bowl.

3. This game will present a contrast in styles between pass-heavy Liberty and run-dominant Georgia Southern. The Flames' Stephen Calvert has thrown for 300+ yards six times this season. By contrast, the Eagles have totaled five 300-yard passing games during their 36 seasons of varsity football.

4. The Cure Bowl has been played four previous times, raising a total of $3.7 million for the Breast Cancer Research Foundation (BCRF). Sun Belt Conference teams have appeared in all four Cure Bowls to date, going 2-2. This will officially mark the fourth bowl game Hugh Freeze has coached in, not counting the vacated 2012 BBVA Compass Bowl appearance. His teams are 2-1 in bowl games.