published Thursday, July 25th, 2013

ASU, GSU still playing to win

SPARTANBURG, S.C. — Georgia Southern coach Jeff Monken and Appalachian State coach Scott Satterfield answered the same question the same way.

Even though their teams are ineligible for the Southern Conference title and can't participate in the Football Championship Subdivision playoffs, the Eagles and Mountaineers are playing to win this season, their last in the league before moving to the Sun Belt Conference in the bowl subdivision.

"Nothing changes," said GSU coach Jeff Monken, who spoke passionately on the subject during the SoCon media day Wednesday at the Spartanburg Marriott.

"We're going to play the best football we're capable of playing, or try to play the best football we're capable of playing every week. ... I love the saying, 'They're just playing for pride.' We play for pride every week. That's what we've always played for."

Both schools are ineligible because they will have more than the FCS maximum of 63 scholarships as they transition to the Football Bowl Subdivision. There was speculation that the schools might consider redshirting as many of their players as possible in order to load for their Sun Belt debut in 2014.

"We're not approaching it that way. We're going to approach it to do the best we can do this year," said first-year App State coach Scott Satterfield. "If they [freshmen] can help and contribute right away, they're going to play. And I think we'll have some newcomers that will play early and often."

Both App State and Georgia Southern would have been among the favorites to both win the SoCon and challenge for the FCS national championship.

Honoring mom

Appalachian State quarterback Jamal Londry-Jackson is the coaches' preseason pick for offensive player of the year. He threw for 3,278 yards and 21 touchdowns last season, when the name of the back of his jersey was just "Jackson."

He made the decision to go by his legal last name, Londry-Jackson, this season to honor his mother, Kathryn Londry.

"She's a single mother, she raised me and my sister, and where I'm at right now is because of how she raised me," he said. "I wanted to dedicate this season to her."

Quarterbacks are typically guaranteed to be present throughout most media days -- nine attended the Southeastern Conference's media days -- but the only QBs on hand Wednesday were Londry-Jackson and The Citadel's Ben Dupree.

New and old

His Mercer Bears won't begin competing in the SoCon until the 2014 season, but Bobby Lamb was among the coaches visiting with the media Wednesday. Also on hand was East Tennessee State coach Carl Torbush.

A former player and coach at Furman, who resigned in November 2010 and was hired by Mercer in January 2011, Lamb said he didn't expect to be back in the SoCon so soon, if ever.

"There's a lot of new faces [in the SoCon], but I know most of the guys," Lamb said. "It's kind of crazy how things happen and God works in mysterious ways."

Extra points

University of Tennessee at Chattanooga tight end Faysal Shafaat had his indecent exposure and public intoxication charges dismissed in Hamilton County General Sessions court Wednesday morning. Shafaat was arrested on July 7. .... Samford coach Pat Sullivan did not attend the media day due to back surgery earlier this summer. In his place was associate head coach Bill D'Ottavio.

Contact John Frierson at jfrierson@timesfreepress.com or 423-757-6268. Follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/MocsBeat.

about John Frierson...

John Frierson is in his seventh year at the Times Free Press and seventh year covering University of Tennessee at Chattanooga athletics. The bulk of his time is spent covering Mocs football, but he also writes about women’s basketball and the big-picture issues and news involving the athletic department. A native of Athens, Ga., John grew up a few hundred yards from the University of Georgia campus. Instead of becoming a Bulldog he attended Ole ...

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