Sun Belt commish credits CCU for league’s ascent

sunbelt-bensonAlthough Coastal Carolina won’t be eligible to compete for the Sun Belt Conference football title in 2016, the addition of the Chanticleers has already had a major impact on the mid-major league – both on the gridiron and in other sports.

CCU coach Joe Moglia spoke at the Sun Belt Media Days in New Orleans on Monday about the excitement of the Chants joining the league. Sun Belt commissioner Karl Benson said the feeling is mutual in his state of the conference address at the SuperDome.

“Coastal Carolina’s membership has had an immediate impact,” Benson said. “What that has said, and the message it has given to all Sun Belt teams and student-athletes, it is possible and will be possible for a Sun Belt team to play on the big stage and play for a national championship.”

Not only did Coastal make a big splash by winning the College World Series the day before officially joining the Sun Belt, but the addition of CCU was a big boost for the league. Benson said that Coastal Carolina’s addition to the league lineup, and the announcement that the conference would be comprised of 10 football members, was the final piece to the puzzle. The Chanticleer program begins competition in all Sun Belt sports except football this year, with CCU’s football program competing for conference honors in 2017 and becoming eligible for post-season bowl participation in 2018.

Monday’s Media Day was an opportunity to recap and review the league’s many advances since Benson took over as commissioner in July of 2012, and more importantly the league’s most recent moves. It is not just hyperbole to call the last 12 months the most significant since the Sun Belt began football competition in 2001 – and likely the most significant in the league’s 40-year history. The last year has seen:

* The establishment of a solid geographical footprint, with the Sun Belt locked into a path to a membership structure that benefits all sports;
* The announcement of a football championship game, one to begin in the 2018 season;
* The addition of a fifth bowl game tie-in, continuing an increase that has seen the Sun Belt more than double its bowl opportunities in the past four years;
* The completion of a stretch that has seen a 10-fold increase in conference revenues to member schools over the past three playing seasons, and
* Significant increases in both television and social media exposure.

“All our indicators are trending upward,” Benson said. “We have created a membership structure that is positioned for success. When I took this job in 2012, our goal was to build a model that would provide our members all they needed to maximize their own university goals and aspirations while under the Sun Belt umbrella. I believe that has been accomplished.

“All you have to do is look at the map now,” he said. “You see two teams from Texas, two from Arkansas, two from Louisiana, two from Alabama, two from Georgia and two from the Carolinas. It’s perfect, it works, and we believe in the long run it will allow the Sun Belt to grow and thrive and prosper.”

Photo courtesy of Sun Belt Conference

Thursday Roundup: NMB, CF volleyball roll in region

Thursday Roundup: NMB, CF volleyball roll in regionThe Carolina Forest and North Myrtle Beach volleyball teams remained [more]

Gilmore makes home run for hall of fame induction

Gilmore makes home run for hall of fame inductionCoastal Carolina baseball head coach Gary Gilmore will be inducted [more]

Monday Roundup: CF, SJ impress at Lady Patriot

Monday Roundup: CF, SJ impress at Lady PatriotThe Carolina Forest and St. James girls golf team made [more]

Strand sends record-tying four stars to Shrine Bowl

Strand sends record-tying four stars to Shrine Bowl Horry County has had an on-again, mostly off-again relationship with [more]

Chants do it with defense for second straight week

Chants do it with defense for second straight weekNot even a 44-minute lightning delay midway through the third [more]

Week 3: MB, CF roll to set up battle of undefeateds

Week 3: MB, CF roll to set up battle of undefeatedsJon "JJ" Jones returned to his old stomping grounds at [more]

Wednesday's Roundup: SJ girls go low to beat Braves

Wednesday's Roundup: SJ girls go low to beat BravesSt. James traveled to Prestwick Country Club on Wednesday to [more]

Tuesday Roundup: Wins for CF golf, NMB volleyball

Tuesday Roundup: Wins for CF golf, NMB volleyballThe reigning Class 4A state champion North Myrtle Beach High [more]

MB transfer cleared just in time to face former school

MB transfer cleared just in time to face former schoolMyrtle Beach football player J.J. Jones has been cleared to [more]

Games go on after Dorian throws schedules for loop

Games go on after Dorian throws schedules for loopDespite Hurricane Dorian costing Horry County Schools a week of [more]

Chants capture historic victory over Jayhawks

Chants capture historic victory over JayhawksCoastal Carolina football recorded its first-ever win over a Power [more]

Who's No. 1? Two teams atop latest football polls

Who's No. 1? Two teams atop latest football polls Like it did after last year’s state championship games, Horry [more]

Hurricane Dorian calls halt to Strand sports schedule

Hurricane Dorian calls halt to Strand sports scheduleHurricane Dorian is not expected to make landfall on the [more]

Coast U-19 girls pass early test, take Atlanta Cup title

Coast U-19 girls pass early test, take Atlanta Cup titleCoach R.J. Bass wanted a strong early test for his [more]

Eastern Michigan spoils Coastal's season opener

Eastern Michigan spoils Coastal's season opener The Coastal Carolina Chanticleers opened their season the same way [more]

Week 1: Historic win for SJ; MB, CF roll in openers

Week 1: Historic win for SJ; MB, CF roll in openersTommy Norwood tried to nix the Gatorade bath. He raised [more]

Welch wins World Am in East/West Coast shootout

Welch wins World Am in East/West Coast shootoutWilliam Welch (West Islip, N.Y.) shot a net 69 (gross [more]

Golf: CF packs 1-2 punch; St. James claims tri-match

Golf: CF packs 1-2 punch; St. James claims tri-matchThe Carolina Forest girls golf team made a strong showing [more]

Chiefs reach Border Battle finale, swept by Warriors

Chiefs reach Border Battle finale, swept by WarriorsThe Palmetto State made a strong showing in the Border [more]

Perfect conditions greet thousands for World Am

Perfect conditions greet thousands for World AmBeautiful weather greeted the 3,215 golfers participating in the 36th [more]

Two Coast FA boys teams crowned Triangle champs

Two Coast FA boys teams crowned Triangle champsTwo Coast FA boys teams returned home as champions from [more]

Week 0: Chiefs top Tigers; Sharks beat Lions at horn

Week 0: Chiefs top Tigers; Sharks beat Lions at hornMatt Reel sighed more than once when talking about his [more]

Six former Pelicans make big-league leap to Cubs

Six former Pelicans make big-league leap to Cubs The distance from Myrtle Beach’s TicketReturn.com Stadium to Chicago’s Wrigley [more]

Chiefs try to stay hungry, humble in title repeat bid

Chiefs try to stay hungry, humble in title repeat bidThe only thing harder than winning a state championship is [more]

Stormy weather big winner at CNB Kickoff Classic

Stormy weather big winner at CNB Kickoff ClassicTwo blowouts, a lightning delay and ultimately three of the [more]

Thursday Roundup: NMB, CF volleyball roll in region

Thursday Roundup: NMB, CF volleyball roll in regionThe Carolina Forest and North Myrtle Beach volleyball teams remained [more]

Gilmore makes home run for hall of fame induction

Gilmore makes home run for hall of fame inductionCoastal Carolina baseball head coach Gary Gilmore will be inducted [more]

Comments are closed.

© 2019 Grand Strand Sports Report · RSS
Myrtle Beach Web Design
Kayaking in Myrtle Beach