#37 Furman FCS Football 2013 Preview

George Hammond

Furman Paladins

Overall Rank: #37
#6 Southern Conference

Furman Team Page#37 Furman FCS Football 2013 PreviewBuy Furman Football Tickets

The Pearce-Horton Football Complex in Greenville, S.C., is getting a face-lift, including a new artificial turf playing surface this season and Furman is hoping this will provide a spark for the program. If Furman is to have success, it will have to play better in the second half of games. Last year, the Paladins were outscored 184-83 in the second half. A 20-17 loss to rival Wofford in midseason seemed to put Furman in a funk as it lost five of its last six.

2012 Record: (3-8, 2-6)
2012 Postseason: None
Coach: Bruce Fowler (9-13 at Furman, 9-13 overall)
Offensive Coordinator: Jimmy Kiser
Defensive Coordinator: John Windham

Returning Leaders:
Rushing: Hank McCloud, RB, 521 yards
Passing: Reese Hannon, QB, 1,896 yards
Receiving: Ryan Culbreath, WR, 415 yards
Tackles: Gary Wilkins, LB, 92 tackles
Sacks: Shawn Boone, DE, 3.5
Interceptions: Reggie Thomas, S, 2

Other Key Returners: FB Ernie Cain, SE Ryan Culbreath, OT Dakota Dozier, OT Charles Emert, QB Reese Hannon, OG Ryan Storms, C Eric Thoni, OG Joe Turner, DE Shawn Boone, CB Reggie Thomas, LB Gary Wilkins, CB Austin Williams, SS Greg Worthy.

Key Losses: TE Colin Anderson, WR Will King, RB Jerodis Williams, DT Colton Keig, DE Josh Lynn, LB Mitch McGrath, NT Neal Rodgers, LB Matt Solomon, FS Nathan Wade.

All five regulars return on the offensive line for a unit that was 43rd in the nation in rushing last year. The group is led by All-American tackle Dakota Dozier. Quarterback Reese Hannon returns as well so the offense looks promising as he threw for more than 1,800 yards last season.

There are concerns, however. For starters, running back Jerodis Williams is gone. All he did last year was lead the nation in kickoff returns. Gone, too, is All-American tight-end Colin Anderson. The defensive side has its share of issues, too. Defensive end Josh Lynn and free safety Nathan Wade must be replaced from a unit that was in the bottom half of the Southern Conference as well as the nation.

Bottom Line:
This is a tough team to gauge. It must get off to a quick start with winnable games against Gardner-Webb, Coastal Carolina and Presbyterian. After that, the schedule gets much tougher. Having Hannon at quarterback should help, but defensive improvement is the key. If the Paladins can’t improve on last year’s numbers, 2013 could be another disappointment.

Projected Postseason: None

2012 Team Stats
Rushing Offense: 167.55 (43rd in nation, 5th in conference)
Passing Offense: 200.91 (68, 4)
Total Offense: 368.45 (60, 6)
Scoring Offense: 24.73 (68, 6)
Rushing Defense: 171.91 (73, 5)
Pass Defense: 228.00 (81, 9)
Total Defense: 399.91 (79, 7)
Scoring Defense: 30.73 (90, 7)
Turnover Margin: -0.64 (102, 9)
Sacks: 2.18 (42, 6)
Sacks Allowed: 1.45 (26, 4)


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