CHARLOTTE, NC --In its second season of play, Coastal Carolina's football program was selected to finish fourth in 2004 in the Big South Conference, announced at the Big South's Football Media Day held in Charlotte, NC, July 30. With that, three Chanticleers were selected to the Preseason All-Big South Football squad by a vote of the league's coaches and sports information directors.
"We know that this is going to be a process in building this program," Coastal head coach David Bennett said. "It is still a year or two, and another class of players, before we are to full capacity on scholarships. However, we are growing and getting better as a team, as we also continue to develop more depth, and we look forward to this season."
Junior linebacker Maurice Simpkins (Leesville, S.C.-Batesburg-Leesville) was named to the Preseason All-Big South squad, along with senior center Nick Johnson (Loganville, Ga.-Loganville) and sophomore defensive end Adrain Grady (Leland, N.C.-North Brunswick). Simpkins led CCU and ranked fourth in the Big South in tackles last season, earning First Team All-Big South accolades. Johnson and Grady were each Second Team honorees last year, as Johnson anchored an offensive line that had Coastal second in the league in rushing, while Grady led the conference in sacks with eight.
Last year, Coastal went 6-5, including one win in the Big South over in-state rival Charleston Southern. For the third year in a row, Gardner-Webb University took the top spot in the Big South Conference preseason football poll, garnering nine first place votes. The two-time League champions completed the 2003 season undefeated in Big South play and posted an overall record of 8-4.
Listed below are the points each team received in the voting. The number in parenthesis indicates the number of first-place votes received.
Team 1 2 3 4 5 Total
Gardner-Webb (9) 45 0 0 0 1 46
Liberty 0 24 6 4 0 33
Virginia Military Institute 0 12 12 6 0 30
Coastal Carolina (1) 5 4 9 10 0 28
Charleston Southern 0 0 3 2 8 13