The last-minute news that Southern’s top receiver, Lee Doss, has been suspended for the Alabama State-Southern game today should help a little but the Hornet secondary still has to contend with the pinpoint passing of Dray Joseph.
Alabama State started Bradley Street and Dionte Ponder in place of Nick Martin and Michael Showers for the Kentucky game and head coach Reggie Barlow indicated he would go with the same starting lineup against Southern because Showers has missed practice time with personal issues off the field and Martin continues to be bothered with a foot injury.
Whoever starts, Barlow would like to see the Hornets play in “our house” like it was a familiar setting, but confidence is often something that is built over time.
“These guys are so hesitant,” he said. “They’re running to a space and they’re looking back at the quarterback as opposed to going to the man. It’s just believing in the technique, believing in the coaching and ultimately believing in themselves. They haven’t done it consistently all season. They’re not analyzing the situation as fast or as quick as they need to. Secondary players can’t play in the secondary and be good if you’re scared and we have some guys that don’t want to get beat deep. They’re just afraid to be aggressive.”
Ater getting torched in the first half against Prairie View, the Hornets went with a 4-2-5 scheme that utilized Trey Jenkins as a nickel back. Barlow indicated that would be the plan going into the game with Southern.