Coastal’s Hillary, Backus earn back-to-back BSC awards

For the second time this season, Coastal Carolina’s Aramis Hillary and Quinn Backus have picked up Big South Conference weekly football awards. Hillary, a senior quarterback from North Augusta, was selected the Choice Hotels Big South Offensive Player of the Week and Backus, a sophomore linebacker from Greenwood, was named the Big South Defensive Player of the Week.

Both Hillary and Backus earned the same honors in week two of this season as they helped the Chanticleers to a 47-45 triple overtime win at Furman. Hillary was also tabbed the Big South Quarterback of the Week by the College Football Performance Awards on Monday.

Hillary completed 30-of-47 passes for 356 yards – all career highs – while tying a career high with three touchdown passes at Toledo. In addition, the 30 completions and 47 attempts are CCU single-game records, while the 356 passing yards is third on the CCU single-game list. Hillary did not throw an interception and led Coastal to four touchdown drives versus the Rockets. In five previous games versus NCAA FBS programs, Coastal had only scored one TD, adding two field goals. Also, the four TD drives at Toledo were the most by the Chants in regulation this season.

Hillary was 12-of-16 for 153 yards with a TD in the first half and rallied the Chants from a 17-7 deficit to a 21-17 lead early in the third quarter. Midway through the fourth quarter, Hillary hit Tyrell Blanks for a 17-yard touchdown to cut the CCU deficit to three, 31-28.

This marks the fourth consecutive week Hillary has set a career high. In week one, he threw for a then career-high 274 yards in a win over North Carolina A&T. In week two, he bettered that mark by throwing for a then career-high 292 yards at Furman. In week three, he completed a then career-high 24 passes.

Backus led the Chanticleers with 13 tackles (nine solo and four assists) and came up with a key defensive play to help CCU trim its deficit to three with fewer than nine minutes to play. With Coastal down 10 midway through the fourth, Backus stripped Toledo’s Cassius McDowell and recovered the fumble. Five plays later, CCU scored a touchdown to cut its deficit to three, 31-28. The Toledo game marks the third time in four games Backus has tallied double-digit stops and the third time in four games he has led the Chants in tackles. Backus averages 10.25 tackles per game to rank second in the Big South and 32nd nationally.

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