Back to Brooks For The Last Three:Coastal Carolina returns home to play its final three regular season games at Brooks Stadium, opening with Savannah State, Nov. 6. Coastal will be celebrating Homecoming festivities at halftime of todays game. The Chanticleers come in with a Big South best 7-1 mark and 4-0 in the league after clinching at least a share of the Big South Conference title with a 31-19 win at two-time defending champion Gardner-Webb, Oct. 30. Savannah State enters with a 2-5 mark after defeating Allen, 34-0, Oct. 30.
The Leaders: David Bennett (Presbyterian, '84) is in his second season at Coastal Carolina with an 13-6 record at CCU and 76-23 overall in eight seasons. At Catawba, leading the Indians to three consecutive appearances in the NCAA Division II playoffs, including a run into the national semifinal round in 2001. Savannah State Head Coach Richard Basil (Savannah State, '01) is in his second season as head coach of the Tigers, holding a 2-12 mark at Savannah State and overall as a head coach.
Last Year's Meeting: Coastal Carolina jumped out to a 12-0 lead in the first quarter and never trailed, winning at Savannah State, 29-19, Oct. 25, 2003. It was the first time Coastal had put together back-to-back wins in its brief history. Running back Aundres Perkins (Effingham, S.C./West Florence) finished the game with his fourth 100-yard game this year, going 105 yards on 12 carries with a pair of touchdowns. Running back Patrick Hall (Richmond, VA/Monacan (Geneva College)) added 68 yards on 10 carries, while quarterback Tyler Thigpen (Winnsboro, S.C./Fairfield Central) had nine carries for 72 yards and a touchdown. Thigpen also was 9-for-19 passing for 87 yards, completing four of those to Darnell Williams for 49 yards. (The complete roundup, including stats, is on page 18.)
Last Time Out Versus Gardner-Webb: Coastal Carolina clinched at least a share of the Big South Conference title with a 31-19 victory at Gardner-Webb, Oct. 30. Coastal Carolina team jumped out to a 17-0 lead midway through the first quarter and made it hold up, as CCU gained 429 yards of total offense, 258 of them on the ground in the victory and held the edge in time of possession with just over 33 minutes.
Running back Patrick Hall (Richmond, VA/Monacan (Geneva College)) posted the third 100-yard rushing game of the season for CCU, going for 103 yards on 19 carries and two touchdowns. He also became the second Chanticleer to eclipse the 1,000-yard career rushing mark, ending with 1,088. Prior to injury his shoulder, quarterback Tyler Thigpen (Winnsboro, S.C./Fairfield Central) was 8-for-18 for 171 yards and one touchdown and surpassed the 1,000-yard mark for the season, finishing the game with 1,008. In relief, quarterback Ren McKinnon (Charlotte, N.C./West Charlotte) had 75 yards on eight carries and a touchdown, all in the fourth quarter. (The complete roundup, including stats, is on page 19.)
Coastal Earning National Recognition: In just its second year of play, the Coastal Carolina football team, with its 7-1 overall mark, has made a national impact. Last week, Coastal was mentioned in two national polls and picked up a third this week, as Don Hansen's National Weekly Football Gazette's Top 40 debuted the Chanticleers at the No. 28 position after CCU's win at Gardner-Webb. Coastal first received votes in both the ESPN/USA Today and The Sports Network I-AA weekly polls, Oct. 25.
If the polls continued through the list of those receiving votes, CCU would have been ranked 31st in the ESPN/USA Today poll, consisting of I-AA football coaches, with 35 points. In the Sports Network poll, the Chanticleers would be ranked 27th with 159 points.