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Brenden Welper | NCAA.com | December 19, 2019

Georgia Southern vs. Liberty: Cure Bowl prediction, time, TV channel, preview

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The Georgia Southern Eagles (7-5) will face the Liberty Flames (7-5) in the 2019 Cure Bowl. Find the game time, television info, preview and prediction below.

Georgia Southern vs. Liberty: Cure Bowl time, TV channel

Georgia Southern and Liberty will kickoff at 2:30 p.m. ET on Saturday, Dec. 21 from Exploria Stadium in Orlando, Florida. The game will be televised on CBS Sports Network.

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Additionally, this year's Cure Bowl will feature the first all-female radio crew for an FBS game. Play-by-play voice Jamie Seh, color analyst Dani Welniak and sideline reporter Melanie Newman will all be part of the historic broadcast. Their call will be carried live on Sirius XM Radio and the TuneIn Radio App. 

Georgia Southern vs. Liberty: Cure Bowl preview

The 2019 Cure Bowl will be the first American football game played at Exploria Stadium. Opened in 2017, the venue is home to Orlando City SC of Major League Soccer and the Orlando Pride of the National Women's Soccer League.

As for the game itself, two teams with identical records of 7-5 will face each other for the first time.

Liberty has never played in a bowl game before, as this is just the Flames' second season at the FBS level (and first year of bowl eligibility). Georgia Southern is 2-0 all-time in bowl appearances, having won the 2015 GoDaddy Bowl and the 2018 Camellia Bowl.

The Eagles began the 2019 season in a 1-3 hole, with losses to currently ranked LSU and Minnesota and an eventual 10-win Louisiana team. But a four-game winning streak helped spark a 6-2 run over their final eight games. 

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Georgia Southern's offense (29.2 points per game) is powered by a versatile ground game. Three players have rushed for more than 650 yards in 2019, including starting quarterback Shai Werts.

The redshirt junior tallied 676 yards on 149 carries (4.5 yards per carry) and scored five touchdowns. Despite only throwing for 704 yards on 108 attempts, Werts finished with nine touchdown passes and zero interceptions. 

Georgia Southern averaged 260.9 yards per game on the ground in the regular season. The Eagles have held opponents to just 136.7 rushing yards.

Meanwhile, the Flames began their season with back-to-back double-digit losses before rattling off five straight victories.

In contrast with the Eagles, Liberty's offense (33.7 points per game) is much more predicated on its passing attack. Senior quarterback Stephen Calvert threw for 3,393 yards and 26 touchdowns in the regular season, with a completion percentage of 58.8. He was picked off only five times.

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Calvert's top target was fellow senior Antonio Gandy-Golden. The wideout finished with 74 receptions for 1,333 yards and nine touchdowns. 

But the Flames aren't one-dimensional. They still finished the regular season with 24 rushing touchdowns. Twelve of those came from senior running back Frankie Hickson, who ran for 921 yards on 165 attempts (5.6 yards per carry). Hickson headlines Liberty's 1-2 punch at tailback that includes junior Joshua Mack (767 yards, six touchdowns). 

Georgia Southern vs. Liberty: Cure Bowl score prediction

Liberty is in uncharted territory. Simply making it a bowl game was a milestone for the program. Win or lose, it's an important step for the Flames. But the inexperience will be too much to overcome against a Georgia Southern team that's looking to win its second consecutive bowl game.

Georgia Southern 34, Liberty 17

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