First verse, same as the first? Appalachian State certainly hopes so.Last year, the Mountaineers punched a ticket to a Division I bowl game for the first time in school history. On Sunday, the Apps learned they will head back to the same destination, the Camellia Bowl in Montgomery, Ala., to play Toledo on Dec. 17.App State’s trip back to Montgomery is a reward for a 9-3 regular season and a share of the Sun Belt title. Despite two losses in the first three games to Power Five programs, the Mountaineers rolled off eight wins in the final nine games with a powerful rushing attack and a record-setting defense.”Very excited to be going bowling for our second straight year, and it’s the third year in a row we’re bowl eligible,” App State coach Scott Satterfield said. “That’s exciting for our program, our players, our fans. Going back to the Camellia Bowl, we had a great experience last year going to our first bowl game. It was new to everyone, and I thought they treated us great down there.”Toledo’s high-powered offense might not be so accommodating to the Apps. Behind the big four of quarterback Logan Woodside, running back Kareem Hunt, tight end Michael Roberts and receiver Cody Thompson, the Rockets average 38.8 points per game, good for 19th in the country.Woodside ranks seventh in the country in passing yards (3,882) and first in the NCAA in touchdowns (43). Roberts has been on the receiving end of 15 of those touchdowns. Thompson has a team-leading 1,170 receiving yards to go along with his 10 touchdowns. Oh, and Hunt ranks 14th in the country with 1,355 rushing yards, trailing Jalin Moore by 12 whole yards.”I really didn’t have any preference, to be honest, because I don’t have any control over it,” Satterfield said after learning of the matchup. “None of us do, so the things I can’t control, I don’t really worry about. We’ve always been that way here. The hand we’re dealt, we deal with it and attack it.”If any team is equipped to take on the Rockets, it’s the Mountaineers.The defense ranks seventh in the country in scoring defense (17 ppg) after allowing a total of 94 points against the Fun Belt for 11.75 points per game. Marcus Cox and Moore can more than handle Toledo’s porous defense.From the outset, it appears this game will come down to Toledo’s air raid offense against App State’s stingy defense. With the program searching for its second Division I bowl win, the Mountaineers are hoping the second verse is the same as the first, but a little bit louder and a little bit worse.
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