ATLANTA -- Georgia State's first road game of the 2013 season is at Big 12 foe West Virginia Saturday at 12 noon at Milan Puskar Stadium in Morgantown, W.Va. The game will be regionally televised on ROOT Sports Pittsburgh.
The Panthers (0-2), playing their inaugural FBS season, are looking for their first victory under first-year head coach Trent Miles after a disappointing loss to Chattanooga, 42-14. West Virginia is 1-1 following a 16-7 loss at Oklahoma.
"We're looking forward to going to West Virginia, where we are going to be challenged by an excellent football team," Miles said. "Our kids should be very excited to go and compete against a team from the Big 12, in a BCS conference. They have a dominating defense, especially up front. They looked really good defensively against Oklahoma.
"We want to go out and compete against an excellent football team and execute the best that we possibly can."
In its two losses, GSU has shown the ability to throw the football as the Panthers lead the Sun Belt Conference in passing, averaging 332.0 yards per game. Sophomore Ronnie Bell averages 230.5 yards per game, while sophomore Ben McLane came off the bench to throw two fourth-quarter touchdowns against Chattanooga.
The wide receiver tandem of senior Albert Wilson and true freshman Robert Davis rank 1-2 in the Sun Belt in receptions and receiving yards per game. Wilson, the leading receiver in Georgia State history, has 15 receptions for 299 yards and three touchdowns, while Davis adds 11 catches for 166 yards.
Georgia State and West Virginia are meeting for the first time in football. In their first three seasons, the Panthers have faced two other teams from BCS conferences, both from the SEC, playing at Alabama in 2010 (l. 63-7) and at Tennessee (l. 51-13) in 2012. GSU travels to Alabama again this season, playing at Tuscaloosa on Oct. 5.
GAME COVERAGE: Television coverage is available on ROOT Sports Pittsburgh (DirecTV Channel 659). The announcers are Rob King, Rasheed Marshall and Amanda Mazey.
Radio coverage is available on the GSU Radio Network, including Atlanta flagship 1340 The Fan 3. Dave Cohen is in his 31st season as the play-by-play voice of Georgia State athletics, while Harper LeBel and Brandon Leak join him from the booth, and Sam Crenshaw adds sideline coverage.
WILSON PICKS UP WHERE HE LEFT OFF: Wide receiver Albert Wilson has opened his senior season with the same kind of all-around productivity that has marked his entire career. The Port St. Lucie, Fla., native tied his career high with eight catches against Samford for 167 yards, just eight yards shy of his own school record of 175, with a 40-yard touchdown catch. He added seven receptions for 132 yards and two scores against Chattanooga.
Wilson leads the Sun Belt Conference in receptions (7.5), receiving yards (149.5 pg) and all-purpose yards (210.5 pg).
STRONG DEBUT FOR DAVIS: True freshman wide receiver Robert Davis has had an impressive start to his Georgia State career. After his first two games, Davis is second in the Sun Belt Conference -- to teammate Albert Wilson -- in receptions (5.5 pg) and receiving yards (83.0 PG).
The 6-2, 190-pounder from Warner Robins, Ga., opened his career with seven receptions for 66 yards against Samford. He achieved his first 100-yard game against Chattanooga with four catches for 100 yards.
A hidden gem uncovered in the recruiting process by head coach Trent Miles and his staff, Davis caught only 11 passes during his senior season in a run-dominated offense at Northside High School. Georgia State was his only Division I scholarship offer.
WILSON AMONG FBS ACTIVE LEADERS: Senior wide receiver Albert Wilson's career average of 19.4 yards per catch ranks first among all active FBS players. He has 119 career receptions for 2,312 yards and 18 touchdowns.
The Port St. Lucie, Fla., native also ranks fourth among active players with 4,373 career all-purpose yards and fourth in receiving yards per game (72.3).
TRUE FRESHMEN MAKE IMPACT: A total of nine members of Georgia State's highly-regarded freshman class have seen action thus far. Seven true freshmen played in the season opener against Samford, and then two more entered the lineup against Chattanooga.
On offense, wide receiver Robert Davis is the Panthers' second-leading receiver, and rookies Keith Rucker and Bill Teknipp share the tight end position. Running back Kyler Neal is a special teams contributor.
On defense, Shawayne Lawrence is a starter at defensive end, while defensive linemen Tevin Jones, Carnell Hopson and Jalen Lawrence are all key backups. Jameel Spencer is a backup at linebacker, while Mackendy Cheridor sees action at both outside linebacker and tight end.
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