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Report card: Grading JSU's homecoming victory over Stephen F. Austin

JSU SF Austin Action

Jacksonville State head coach John Grass celebrates after a Gamecock TD during the JSU vs Stephen F Austin NCAA football game. / Photo by Stephen Gross/The Anniston Star

How do your thoughts about JSU’s 28-24 victory over Stephen F. Austin compare to ours? 

Offense: C

JSU’s offense came up with the drive it needed when the Gamecocks needed it most, going 75 yards in 11 plays to win the game. However, it was JSU’s only drive that started on its side of midfield that resulted in points.

Defense: B+

The Gamecocks gave up yards, and a dumb conduct penalty on D.J. Coleman helped SFA to tie the game. However, a goal-line stand, featuring Malik Feaster’s pass breakup in the end zone on fourth down, plus Feaster’s clinching interception and forced fumble that resulted in NIcario Harper’s return for a score were key. Harper also had an interception to set up a JSU touchdown.

Special teams: B

Uneventful day. Jack Dawson averaged 41.3 yards per punt, and Alen Karajic hit all four extra points. Damond Philyaw-Johnson had two kickoff returns for 51 yards.

Coaching: B

JSU’s coaching staff got quarterback Zerrick Cooper more involved in the running game at key moments, and it paid off on the way to all three of JSU’s offensive touchdowns.

Overall: B

JSU stopped the bleeding, staving off its second three-game losing streak in three years and first since 2019.

—Joe Medley

Sports Writer Joe Medley: 256-235-3576. On Twitter: @jmedley_star.