Liberty 2014 FCS Football Playoff Capsule

Liberty Flames
Big South


Liberty earned the Big South’s automatic bid to the playoffs following a massive 15-14 win at Coastal Carolina. That was the Chanticleers first loss of the season and the Flames are riding high heading into the playoffs. Liberty played a tough schedule and even beat FBS team Appalachian State. Their losses came against North Carolina, Indiana State, Richmond and Charleston Southern. All of those are quality losses and this team is well tested for a Big South squad.

2014 Record: 8-4, 4-1
Coach: Turner Gill

Big Wins: 10/11 at Appalachian State (55-48), 11/22 at Coastal Carolina (15-14)
Bad Losses: 9/27 at Indiana State (19-38), 11/15 Charleston Southern (36-38)

This is a balanced team that is comfortable playing a 15-14 type of game just as much as getting involved in a 55-48 shootout. Quarterback Josh Woodrum has thrown for 2,521 yards and 19 touchdowns on the year and is also relatively dangerous with his feet. But what Woodrum does extremely well is manage the game. He is efficient and smart and rarely does anything to lose a game. That does not mean Woodrum is simply a game manager. He can win games with his arm and his legs. Darrin Peterson is Woodrum’s favorite target. He easily leads the team with 76 catches for 1,214 yards and 12 scores. At running back, D.J. Abnar leads the way. He rushed for over 1,000 yards on the year and not many teams have had luck stopping all of the weapons on Coach Turner Gill’s offense.

The defense has struggled at times this year and that is usually when Liberty falters. Allowing 56 points against North Carolina is one thing, but allowing Charleston Southern to rush for 359 yards and score 38 points is not going to cut it; and that was just back on November 15th in the second to last game of the regular season. Obviously they played better against Coastal Carolina in the season finale, but some teams can run right over this defense. Others, like Indiana State and Richmond, found success through the air. Those two teams threw for 340 and 325 yards, respectively, against the Flames and were able to mix in enough of a ground game to keep the Liberty defense guessing all game.

Statistical Leaders:
Rushing: D.J. Abnar, RB, 1,166 yards
Passing: Josh Woodrum, QB, 2,521 yards
Receiving: Darrin Peterson, WR, 1,214 yards
Tackles: Jacob Hagen, 92
Sacks: Chima Uzowihe, 8.0
Interceptions: Jacob Hagen, 8

2014 Team Stats:
Rushing Offense: 172.5 (56th in nation, 4th in conference)
Passing Offense: 251.1 (31, 3)
Total Offense: 423.5 (37, 2)
Scoring Offense: 35.0 (21, 2)
Rushing Defense: 184.1 (82, 5)
Pass Defense: 200.8 (48, 4)
Total Defense: 384.9 (64, 5)
Scoring Defense: 28.1 (72, 6)
Turnover Margin: 0.73 (16, 1)
Sacks: 2.18 (48, 2)
Sacks Allowed: 0.82 (7, 1)

Recent Playoff Appearances:
No Tournament History

*all team stats through 11/15


Playoff Central