#9 Chattanooga FCS Football 2015 Preview

George Hammond

Chattanooga Mocs

Overall Rank: #9
#1 SoCon

Chattanooga Team Page#9 Chattanooga FCS Football 2015 PreviewBuy Chattanooga Football Tickets

Coach Russ Huesman begins his seventh season (41-29 at Chattanooga) with a veteran team. Prior to Huesman’s arrival, Chattanooga had only four winning seasons in the previous 23 seasons, but the Mocs have had five winning campaigns in the last six years. In 2014, they earned their first playoff victory in history and their scoring average of 34.7 points a game was a school record. Chattanooga won the SoCon as it went unbeaten in league play and went two games deep into the playoffs before bowing to New Hampshire. With 12 Mocs receiving some type of preseason all-SoCon mention, they figure to be the team to beat once again.
2014 Record: 10-4, 7-0
2014 Postseason: FCS Playoffs
Coach: Russ Huesman (41-29 at Chattanooga)
Offensive Coordinator: Jeff Durden
Defensive Coordinator: Adam Braithwaite

Returning Leaders:
Rushing: Jacob Huesman, QB, 1,009 yards
Passing: Jacob Huesman, QB, 2,731 yards
Receiving: C.J. Board, WR, 507 yards
Tackles: Leslie Nakevion, LB, 82
Sacks: Keionta Davis, DE, 5.5
Interceptions: Lucas Webb, S, 6

Other Key Returnees: RB Derrick Craine, RB Richard Bagley, WR C.J. Board, OT Hunter Thompson, OG Corey Levin, C Jacob Revis, OG Synjen Herren, DE Toyvian Brand, DT Josh Freeman, LB AJ Hampton, LB Justin King, CB Dee Virgin,  CB Trevor Wright, S Semaje Kendell, K Henrique Ribeiro

Key Losses: DE Davis Tull, RB Keon Williams, WR Tommy Hudson, TE Faysal Shafaat, DE Derrick Lott

Start with quarterback Jacob Huesman, who is the only Moc in history to record 4,000 passing yards and 2,000 rushing yards in his career. He has won back-to-back SoCon Offensive Player of the Year honors and is this year’s preseason pick for that honor. In addition to Huesman, there are six other returning starters on offense, seven on defense and two special teams players. Also receiving preseason all-SoCon recognition were: offensive linemen Corey Levin, defensive linemen Josh Freeman and Keionta Davis, linebacker Nakevion Leslie, defensive backs Dee Virgin and Lucas Webb and placekicker Henrique Ribeiro. Second-team honors went to safety Cedric Nettles, offensive lineman Synjen Herron, wide receiver C.J. Board and center Jacob Revis. The Mocs return four starters from an offensive line that allowed only 13 sacks last year.

The Mocs must replace standouts Davis Tull and Derrick Lott, who combined for 16.5 sacks and 31.5 tackles for loss last season. That’s a lot of production. Tull, a three-time SoCon defensive player of the year, was a fifth-round draft choice of the New Orleans Saints. The Mocs must replace Keon Williams, who rushed for 1,037 yards last year, too. They do lose two key receivers in Tommy Hudson and tight end Faysal Shafaat and look out if Huesman goes down. As the team statistics reveal, he’s the leading returning rusher.

The Bottom Line:
What’s not to like? Jacob Huesman is a proven winner and even though the Mocs lost to New Hampshire in last year’s playoffs, they know they’re capable of playing with the elite teams in the FCS. If they stay healthy, Chattanooga could go a long way. The Mocs open the season by hosting Jacksonville State, which beat the Mocs 26-23 in overtime last year. At the end of the year, the Mocs close the regular season at Florida State. As for the conference, the key game is with Samford on September 19th.

Projected Postseason: FCS Playoffs

2014 Team Stats:
Rushing Offense: 210.8 (24th in nation, 3rd in conference)
Passing Offense: 200.4 (74, 4)
Total Offense: 411.1 (40, 2)
Scoring Offense: 34.7 (20, 1)  
Rushing Defense: 124.4 (20, 2)
Pass Defense: 153.2 (3, 2)
Total Defense: 277.6 (4, 1)
Scoring Defense: 19.4 (11, 1)
Turnover Margin: 0.43 (28, 2)
Sacks: 2.50 (26, 1)
Sacks Allowed: 1.07 (12, 4)

Madness 2015 Recruit Rankings:
#46 Michael Bean
#96 DJ Williams
#104 Alex Trotter
#158 Kyle Nalls


See All FCS Football Top 44 Previews