Chanticleers turn attention to key third-down situations

For the second time in 14 preseason practices, the Coastal Carolina football team spent the majority of the team periods working on third down situations.

“These are critical downs that can change a game,” said head coach Joe Moglia. “Last year our offense was third in the league but 80th in the nation in converting third downs. We have to get better in that phase. While our defense was pretty good on third downs, teams went for it 27 times on fourth down against us and converted nearly half of those. If you factor that, we were not really getting off the field like those third down numbers would suggest.”

The ball was placed at various yard lines, but nearly all the plays were third and three situations. While the defense had the upper hand last Friday, the offense was much more successful in converting on Tuesday. When the defense made stops, depending on the yard line, the offense would punt, go for it if it was close enough or kick a field goal.

“It is very important to know the down and distance and where you are on the field,” Moglia said. “After that third down is over, two things have to happen. One, the offense needs to get to the line immediately to keep the pressure on the defense. Two, both the offense and defense have to get the special team units, either the punt/punt return or field goal/field goal block teams, on the field, get lined up and execute.

“This practice not only is about pride and wining that critical down, but also a great mental exercise to keep everyone alert and on the same page.”

Coastal Carolina will have its final two-a-day session on Wednesday.

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