Coastal Carolina University has released its 2012 football schedule that features games with four teams that played in the postseason in 2011 and five teams ranked among the nation’s top 30 in the final polls.
Although the schedule is light on FCS heavyweights (Coastal faces Toledo instead of BCS schools Georgia, Clemson and West Virginia in years past), the Chants will face a beefed-up FBS non-conference slate, featuring three teams that reached the FBS playoffs in 2011.
“We feel this schedule is very challenging, especially our non-conference opponents,” said Director of Athletics Hunter Yurachek. “It would not surprise me if each of our first five opponents reaches the postseason. We will continue to schedule aggressively because the only way to put Coastal Carolina in a position to win championships is to face tough competition and build a resume worthy of postseason play.”
First year head coach Joe Moglia and the Chanticleers will host North Carolina A&T on Sept. 1. Including a 31-14 win in Greensboro last season, the Chanticleers own a 3-0 all-time mark versus the Aggies.
Coastal will hit the road to face Furman on Sept. 8 in Greenville. The Paladins, who have won a Southern Conference record 12 league titles, were ranked 29th in the final national poll thanks to wins over Wofford and Appalachian State as well as scoring 32 points at Florida in the season finale. Last season, the Chants scored with 1:32 left in the game to claim a 30-23 decision over the Paladins in the teams’ 2011 season opener at Brooks Stadium to give CCU a 2-1 advantage in the all-time series.
The Chanticleers will return home Sept. 15 to host Eastern Kentucky for Family Weekend. This will mark the first meeting between CCU and the 2011 Co-Ohio Valley champions Colonels. Eastern Kentucky (7-5) was ranked 24th in the final poll, earned an at-large berth to the 2011 NCAA FCS playoffs and fell 20-17 to James Madison. The Colonels, who have won two OCV championships over the last four years, return running back Matt Denham, who finished third in the NCAA FCS in rushing (130.83 ypg).
Coastal will hit the road for the next two weekends before having an open date to prepare for the Big South portion of its schedule.
On Sept. 22, CCU will travel to Toledo, who was 9-4 last season and played in a bowl for the second consecutive year. The Rockets, who ranked sixth in the NCAA FBS in scoring offense, return perhaps the best quarterback-wide receiver combinations in the nation. Signal caller Terrence Owens ranked sixth in the NCAA FBS in passing efficiency while wideout Eric Page ranked second nationally in receptions, snagging 9.62 passes per game.
The following week, Coastal will travel to Boone, N.C., to face Appalachian State on Sept. 29. The three-time national champion Mountaineers were 8-4 and reached the NCAA playoffs for the seventh consecutive season in 2011. Coastal is 0-2 all-time versus Appalachian State with both losses coming in Boone, falling 30-3 in 2005 and 45-28 in the 2006 NCAA playoffs. In fact, since the start of the 2003 season, the Mountaineers have won 61 of 65 games played on their home turf at Kidd Brewer Stadium.
Coastal begins its Big South schedule – hosting Stony Brook Oct. 13 as part of Hall of Fame Weekend. The Seawolves, who own a 4-0 advantage over Coastal all-time, posted a 9-4 record and finished 18th in the final poll. Stony Brook won its first-round NCAA playoff game, 31-28 versus Albany, before falling in round two to top-seed and national runner-up Sam Houston, 34-27. The Seawolves, who were the top scoring team in NCAA FCS last season, return quarterback Kyle Essington, who ranked second in the nation in pass efficiency, as well as running back Miguel Maysonet, who ranked eighth in rushing (125.62 ypg).
After a trip to VMI Oct. 20, Coastal returns to Brooks Stadium to face Liberty for Homecoming on Oct. 27. The Flames are coming off a 7-4 season and were ranked 25th in the final FCS poll.
Coastal closes the season with road games at Gardner-Webb (Nov. 3) and Presbyterian (Nov. 10) before playing its 2012 regular-season finale versus traditional foe Charleston Southern (Nov. 17). Prior to the kickoff versus the Buccaneers, Coastal will honor its 2012 senior class.
Coastal Carolina returns All-Big South performers Andrae Jacobs (LB), Matt Hazel (WR), Jamey Cheatwood (OT), Chris Thomas (DE) and Niccolo Mastromatteo (PR). Also back are the Chants’ top six rushers, top six receivers, starting quarterback Aramis Hillary and starting linemen Pat Williams (C), Chad Hamilton (OG) and Kaleb Dees (OG). In addition to Jacobs and Thomas on defensive, Coastal returns starting safeties Johnnie Houston and Philip George, as well as linemen Quinton Davis, Jamel Davis, Johnny Hartsfield and Jeffery Salley.
Season tickets for the 2012 football campaign will be available for purchase beginning on March 1. Season tickets are the only way to guarantee a seat inside Brooks Stadium for the entire season. The Chanticleer Athletic Foundation (CAF) has moved to a one-donation model for the benefit of fans. Once a donation is made to the CAF for the athletic year (July 1-June 30), you are eligible to purchase football, men’s basketball and baseball season tickets.
Also beginning in March, fans will be able to use the new ticketing system that the athletic department is currently installing. Coastal Carolina Athletics has partnered with TicketReturn to offer fans more options than ever before. Some of the new features include the ability to print tickets at home, e-mail your tickets to friends, family or co-workers when you are unable to attend a game, and manage your tickets online at any time.
To find out more information about purchasing 2012 football season tickets, call the Athletic Ticket Office at (843) 347-8499.
Coastal Carolina 2012 Football Schedule
Sept. 1 Sat. NORTH CAROLINA A&T Conway, S.C. TBA, Brooks Stadium
Sept. 8 Sat. at Furman Greenville, S.C. TBA, Paladin Stadium
Sept. 15 Sat. EASTERN KENTUCKY Conway, S.C. TBA, Brooks Stadium
Sept. 22 Sat. at Toledo Toledo, Ohio TBA
Sept. 29 Sat. at Appalachian State Boone, N.C. TBA, Kidd Brewer Stadium
Oct. 13 Sat. STONY BROOK Conway, S.C. TBA, Brooks Stadium
Oct. 20 Sat. at VMI * Lexington, Va. TBA, Alunmi Memorial Field
Oct. 27 Sat. LIBERTY * Conway, S.C. TBA, Homecoming, Brooks Stadium
Nov. 3 Sat. at Gardner-Webb * Boiling Springs, N.C. TBA, Spangler Stadium
Nov. 10 Sat. at Presbyterian * Clinton, S.C. TBA, Bailey Memorial Stadium
Nov. 17 Sat. CHARLESTON SOUTHERN * Conway, S.C. TBA, Brooks Stadium
BOLD — Home Games
* — Big South Conference Game