#5 Coastal Carolina FCS Football 2015 Preview

George Hammond

Coastal Carolina Chanticleers

Overall Rank: #5
#1 Big South

Coastal Carolina Team Page#5 Coastal Carolina FCS Football 2015 PreviewBuy Coastal Carolina Football Tickets

In the last two seasons, Coastal Carolina has won more FCS games (24) than any team except for four-time champion North Dakota State (30), but it has probably earned more respect for some of the losses during that span than all the victories. Last year they almost knocked off North Dakota State before losing 39-32 in national quarterfinal action. The Chanticleers, who have enjoyed back-to-back 12-win seasons, have won the Big South title outright or earned a share of the crown for three consecutive years and they’re the team to reckon with once again in 2015 as they had eight players selected on the preseason Big South team.

2014 Record: 12-2, 4-1
2014 Postseason: FCS Playoffs
Coach: Joe Moglia (32-10 at Coastal Carolina and overall)
Offensive Coordinator: Dave Patenaude
Defensive Coordinator: Clayton Carlin

Returning Leaders:
Rushing: De’Angelo Henderson, RB, 1,534 yards
Passing: Alex Ross, QB, 3,389 yards
Receiving: Bruce Mapp, WR, 959 yards
Tackles: Calvin Hollenhorst, DE, 60
Sacks: Roderick Holder, DE, 6.5
Interceptions: Kamron Summers, DB, 3

Other Key Returnees: WR John Israel, WR Tyrell Blanks, TE Craig Weick, Rayshauld Shields, LB, OL Voghens Larrieux, KR Devin Brown

Key Losses: OT Chad Hamilton, OG Mo Ashley, C Kevin Hart, LB Quinn Backus, DB Denzel Rice, DB Pernell Williams

Quarterback Alex Ross returns for a final season as he continues his assault on the school and Big South record books. Ross set conference and school single-season records in 2014 for passing yards (3,389), completions (271) and total offense (4,080). Ross led the Big South in six offensive categories last year. Under his guidance, Coastal ranked first in the nation in fourth-down conversions, fourth in first downs, eighth in fewest passes intercepted and 13th in scoring offense. Besides Ross, CCU returns running back De’Angelo Henderson (6.6 ypg) and receivers Bruce Mapp, John Israel and Tyrell Black. Explosive kick returner Devon Brown also returns. The offense should be scary, to say the least. The Chanticleers must replace three-time Big South Defensive Player of the Year linebacker Quinn Backus, but senior defensive end Roderick Holder, who had 48 tackles and 6.5 sacks last year, returns to lead the unit.

Coastal Carolina must replace three members of its offensive line, which is one of the key concerns. The Chanticleers suffered a blow in preseason when tight end Thomas Pauciello suffered a knee injury and is out for the year. In addition, they’ll have new faces in the secondary. The defense is the concern as Coastal was 65th nationally in total defense last year and just 69th against the run. If the Chanticleers want to make a deep playoff run, they will need to bolster that side of the football.

The Bottom Line:
The sky is the limit for this team. It has talent, experience and the knowledge it can play with the FCS big boys (North Dakota State). Unlike most other FCS schools, Coastal Carolina isn’t playing an FBS school this season. The first part of the schedule is challenging, but honestly, it shouldn’t present too much of a problem (at Furman, at South Carolina State, Western Illinois and Bryant). The Western Illinois contest could be interesting, though. But if the Chanticleers get through that portion unscathed, look out, because they could run the table setting up a huge contest at Liberty, which has been moved to Thursday night, November 19th, on ESPN in the regular-season finale.

Projected Postseason: FCS Playoffs

2014 Team Stats:
Rushing Offense: 215.5 (20th in nation, 1st in conference)
Passing Offense: 247.9 (33, 3)
Total Offense: 463.4 (18, 1)
Scoring Offense: 37.3 (13, 1)  
Rushing Defense: 178.1 (69, 4)
Pass Defense: 211.4 (56, 4)
Total Defense: 389.5 (65, 5)
Scoring Defense: 19.6 (13, 1)
Turnover Margin: 0.29 (41, 4)
Sacks: 2.07 (58, 1)
Sacks Allowed: 1.14 (15, 2)

Madness 2015 Recruit Rankings:
#149 Connor Kubala
#167 Chance Thrasher


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