Citadel at Coastal Carolina FCS Football 2015 Playoffs 1st Round Breakdown

George Hammond

Citadel at Coastal Carolina FCS Football 2015 Playoffs 1st Round Breakdown


Citadel at Coastal Carolina, Saturday, 2:00 p.m.

These two South Carolina foes will meet for the first time since the 2014 season opener won by Coastal Carolina, 31-16, on the Bulldogs’ home field. That was Mike Houston’s first game as coach at The Citadel and the former Division II coach at Lenoir-Rhyne has done an outstanding job as witnessed by the Bulldogs’ 23-22 stunning victory over FBS South Carolina on Saturday. The Bulldogs, a triple-option team, attempted just three passes against South Carolina, but they rushed 61 times for 350 yards. The Citadel is second in the FCS in total rushing yards at 344.3 yards per game.

Coastal Carolina was ranked as high as No. 2 this season in the CSM poll, but lost to Big South foes Charleston Southern and Liberty – the first time Coastal has lost two Big South games in the same season since 2011 - to keep the Chanticleers from earning a top seed and first-round bye. While The Citadel prefers to run, Coastal likes to pass as senior quarterback Alex Ross has thrown for 2,594 yards, but the Chanticleers might need to run to keep The Citadel off the field. The Bulldogs are just 51st against the run, yielding 156.5 yards per game.

When these two met last year, the story of the game was Coastal’s defense, which held The Citadel to 1-for-6 on third-down conversions in the first half while forcing four fumbles. Coastal jumped out to a 14-0 advantage, but The Citadel still managed to rush for 358 yards in the game. The Citadel should be on an emotional high entering the contest, but Coastal Carolina has been here before and the experience factor gives it the edge.

The winner will play another South Carolina school in the second round: Charleston Southern, which received the No. 8 seed.

Projected Score: Coastal Carolina 27, The Citadel 21


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