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Cure Bowl 2019: Liberty vs. Georgia Southern TV Schedule, Time and Odds

Joe Tansey@JTansey90Featured ColumnistDecember 20, 2019

STATESBORO, GA - OCTOBER 26: Shai Werts #1 of the Georgia Southern Eagles moves the ball on keeper in the first quarter against the New Mexico State Aggies at Paulson Stadium on October 26, 2019 in Statesboro, Georgia. (Photo by Chris Thelen/Getty Images)
Chris Thelen/Getty Images

The Liberty Flames were one of the most talked-about programs at the start of the college football season because of the stir caused by head coach Hugh Freeze.

Once Freeze returned to the sideline, the attention faded away and the independent side reeled off six victories in seven games. However, Liberty enters the Cure Bowl with two defeats in three contests and as the underdog against the Georgia Southern Eagles.

The Sun Belt squad carries the same record as Liberty, but it has a much more impressive victory over the Appalachian State Mountaineers on its resume. Chad Lunsford's team won two of its last three to secure bowl eligibility and a trip to Orlando for its second consecutive bowl appearance.

                   

Cure Bowl Information

Date: Saturday, December 21

Start Time: 2:30 p.m. ET 

TV: CBS Sports Network

Odds (via Caesars)Georgia Southern (-4); Over/Under: 58

                

Preview

CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA - NOVEMBER 23: Stephen Calvert #12 of the Liberty Flames throws a pass in the first half during a game against the Virginia Cavaliers at Scott Stadium on November 23, 2019 in Charlottesville, Virginia. (Photo by Ryan M. Kelly/Getty Ima
Ryan M. Kelly/Getty Images

Most fans remember Liberty this season because of the lengths Freeze took to direct the team from the coaching box versus the Syracuse Orange and Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns.

After those two losses, the Flames played solid football until the end of October, putting together a five-game winning streak. Since October 26, Liberty is 2-3, with its only victories coming against two of the worst FBS teams: the UMass Minutemen and New Mexico State Aggies.

Quarterback Stephen "Buckshot" Calvert is Liberty's top player to watch, as he has 3,393 passing yards and 21 touchdowns. The senior enters the Cure Bowl off two of his worst performances of the campaign, going 32-for-69 for 452 yards and throwing for three scores and a pair of interceptions.

But he could find success against a Georgia Southern passing defense that allows 240.6 yards per game.

Calvert may be forced to put up around 30 points if his teammates struggle to contain the offensive strength of the Sun Belt side.

The Eagles have 28 rushing touchdowns and only nine through the air. Quarterback Shai Werts and running backs J.D. King and Wesley Kennedy III all have at least 675 rushing yards and five scores.

Liberty possesses one of the worst FBS rushing defenses, as it gives up 192.7 yards per contest.

Werts can challenge opponents through the air too, as he has a pair of three-touchdown performances, but the main weapon of the offense is the ground attack.

A year ago, the Cure Bowl featured an event-record 65 points, and given the deficiencies of both defenses, Saturday's matchup could eclipse that total.

Georgia Southern has played the tougher competition in the Sun Belt, but its struggles against the pass may keep Liberty in the game and allow the Flames to cover as a 4.5-point underdog.

                       

Follow Joe on Twitter, @JTansey90Statistics obtained from ESPN.com.

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