Hamilton nets All-American; CCU trio in awards top 10

ccufoot-chad hamilton vs elon (2)Coastal Carolina offensive lineman Chad Hamilton  was named to the 25-man American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) All-American team, and head coach Joe Moglia, linebacker Quinn Backus and quarterback Alex Ross each finished among the top 10 in The Sports Network’s Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) national individual honors, voted upon by national media members and sports information directors.

Hamilton becomes the 19th Chanticleer football student-athlete to earn All-American honors since the program began in 2003 and joins Tyler Thigpen and Josh Norman as the only Chants named to the AFCA 25-man squad. Hamilton is a three-time All-Big South selection, earning first team honors in 2013 and ’14, and was named Capital One Academic All-District this season. Hamilton led the team with 66 knockdown blocks and was CCU’s top-graded offensive lineman (solo or tied) in 10 of CCU’s 14 games. He was only whistled for three penalties and, over CCU’s 433 pass attempts, only allowed two sacks this season.

Moglia was runner-up for the Eddie Robinson Award, presented annually to the FCS National Coach of the Year. Backus placed fourth in the voting for the Buck Buchanan Award, presented to the nation’s top FCS defensive player, while Ross was seventh in the voting for the Walter Payton Award, presented the FCS’s most outstanding player. Moglia, with 233 points, was runner-up behind New Hampshire head coach Sean McDonnell (399) and received 17 first place votes. Moglia was a finalist for the Eddie Robinson Award for the third time in as many seasons as Coastal’s head coach, finishing 15th in the voting in 2012 and ninth in 2013.

Backus, who finished seventh in the Buchanan Award voting last season, became the first player in Big South football history to be a three-time Defensive Player of the Year as well as the first to lead the league in tackles three times. Backus, the active FCS leader in tackles and fourth among active FCS players in forced fumbles, ranked fourth in the nation and set a Big South record in forced fumbles (0.46 avg./6 total) and 23rd in the nation in tackles (9.8 avg.). While tallying 127 tackles in 13 games, Backus added 10.0 tackles for losses – including 5.5 sacks – with two interceptions, seven pass breakups, six quarterback hurries and a fumble recovery. Five of his turnovers led directly to Coastal Carolina touchdowns. He was the only player in the Big South to rank among the league’s top 10 in tackles (first), sacks (sixth), tackles for losses (seventh), forced fumbles (first) and passes defended (seventh).

Ross finished seventh in the voting after being named the Big South Offensive Player of the Year and leading one of the top offenses in the FCS. Ross set Big South season record for total offense (4,080), passing yards (3,389) and completions (271) while ranking second on the league’s seasonal ists for rushing yards by a quarterback (691) and most games with at least 300 yards of total offense (7). He additionally set CCU career records in passing yards (6,909) and completions (529) while ranking fourth on the Big South career lists for rushing yards by a quarterback (1,355), fifth in passing yards, third in passing touchdowns (51), sixth in completions and second in total offense (8,264).

Photo courtesy of CCU Athletics

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