Robert Mayer-US PRESSWIRE
The two Sun Belt powers face off on Thursday night in a game that could decide the conference title.
It's a Thursday night showdown in the Sun Belt, as programs featuring two of the hottest coaches in the country face off in a game that could decide the conference title.
UL-Monroe (6-3, 4-1) burst on to the national scene with a dramatic road upset over Arkansas, before losing nail-biters to Auburn and Baylor.
Arkansas State (6-3, 4-1), meanwhile, has long been one of the traditional powers in the conference. Last season, they sent head coach Hugh Freeze to Ole Miss; Gus Malzahn, their first-year head coach, surprised many by taking the job after serving as Auburn's offensive coordinator during their 2011 national championship season.
Malzahn and UL-Monroe's Todd Berry are two of the pioneers of the spread offense, with the Warhawks averaging 37.6 points per game and the Red Wolves averaging 34 per game. The contest is a home game for Arkansas State and should be a shoot-out, with the winning coach possibly moving to the front of the line for the several vacant jobs in the SEC this offseason.
Game time, TV channel: 7:00 p.m. ET, ESPN
Online streaming video: ESPN3
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