Riding a seven-game win streak, the Grambling State University Tigers (7-1, 4-0) are set to make an appearance in Golden Lion Stadium this weekend to take on the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff (2-6, 1-3).
UAPB Golden Lions Head Coach Monte Coleman has heard that it’ll be impossible to beat the Tigers. Although Coleman has respect for what Tigers Head Coach Broderick Fobbs has done, he and his guys will go in with winning on their minds.
During this week’s media luncheon, Coleman told a story about an excerpt he was reading in chapel that read “Don’t avoid the impossible.”
Coleman expressed how big getting a win over Grambling would be for them going forward.
“It would be huge,” Coleman said. “A lot of folks say it’s impossible for us to beat Grambling, but not to avoid it that gives God and us as a team an opportunity to go out and do something great. So we’re not avoiding it, we’re going to go out and try to upset them.”
Upsetting Grambling will be a tall task, as the Tigers have now won 24 consecutive regular season Southwestern Athletic Conference games. Grambling has become a landing spot for a number of division I transfers, including their quarterback, 1st team All-SWAC senior Devante Kincade.
“They are leading the SWAC, and they’re undefeated in conference at this time,” Coleman said of Grambling. “They’re coming off of a championship season from last year, and they have a lot of guys that came back. They have a lot of transfers from different division I FBS schools, and Coach Fobbs is doing a great job of coaching his guys.”
The Tigers’ offense hasn’t scored less than 30 points in a SWAC game this season. They run a fast-paced offense, and according to the numbers, they’re pretty balanced. Kincade has run Grambling offensive coordinator Eric Dooley’s offense for two years now, and with time he’s gained more comfort in the pocket.
“They are a high tempo offense,” Coleman said. “We would have thought they would be more of a pass offense but right now they’re about 50/50. That kind of threw us for a loop that they’re so balanced.”
Earlier in the year against Mississippi Valley, the Tigers began to run a two-quarterback system. Coleman explained that the other quarterback, Geremy Hickbottom, is usually inserted in run-first schemes.
Kincade has his hands all over the offense, and he has the tools around him to be productive.
“Against Texas Southern, they played two quarterbacks, and Kincade got the start,” Coleman said.
“The other guy is more of the runner right now, as he’s a little bigger than Kincade. Kincade is another quarterback that’s very similar to Howard from last week, if you have a breakdown on defense he can find it. He has great eyes and he keeps them down field. They’re a veteran team. His receivers are fast, the offensive line is huge, and they utilize their tight ends. Mr. Kincande knows how to run coach Dooley’s offense. He’s also a bounce back from Ole Miss, he was there for a short period and he has great talent.”
On defense, Grambling entered the season with a combined eight players who received preseason first or second team All-SWAC honors. Last week, Texas Southern put up 24 points on the Grambling defense, and that’s the most that they’ve given up since their week one 43-14 loss to Tulane.
“Defensively, they blitz, they use a lot of line stunts, and they have a lot of veterans back,” Coleman said. “They’ll try to get pressure with the front four and cause you to make mistakes. The thing we have to do is protect the football. Right now they’re plus-18, leading the country in the turnover category.”
The Tigers and Golden Lions are set for a 2:30 p.m. kickoff on Saturday.