(15) CCU football hits the road to face Arkansas State on Thursday night

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CONWAY, S.C. – No. 15 Coastal Carolina (5-0, 1-0 SBC) will hit the road for a primetime Thursday night Sun Belt Conference contest at Arkansas State (1-4, 0-1 SBC) at Centennial Bank Stadium. Kick-off is set for 7:30 p.m. ET and will be nationally televised on ESPNU.

NATIONALLY RANKED CHANTICLEERS

• The Chanticleers were ranked in both top 25 national preseason polls to start the season for the first time in program history.

• The Chants were ranked No. 15 in this week’s polls, which marks 17-straight polls (weeks) that the men in teal have been ranked since breaking into the polls in October 2020.

Coastal in the Rankings in 2021

Date                                                          AP             Coaches                       CFP

Preseason             22           24                 N/A

Sept. 7                   17           19                 N/A

Sept. 12                 16           18                 N/A

Sept. 19                 17           17                 N/A

Sept. 26                 16           16                 N/A

Oct. 3                     15           15                 N/A

• Coastal was ranked in the top-25 in both polls for 11-straight weeks last season.

• CCU was ranked as high as No. 9 in the AP Top 25 Poll and No. 11 in the Amway Coaches Poll powered by USA Today Sports last season.

SUN BELT – HIGHEST CALLING

• The Chanticleers made Sun Belt history several times in 2020 with the last being ranked in the top-10 nationally. CCU’s No. 9 ranking in the AP Top 25 Poll and No. 11 ranking in the Amway Coaches Poll (USA Today) on Dec. 20 are both conference highs in terms of national rankings.

2020 SUN BELT EAST DIVISION CHAMPIONS

• Last season, Coastal Carolina won the program’s first-ever Sun Belt East Division Championship with a 49-14 conference road win at Texas State (Nov. 28).

• The Chanticleers won the Sun Belt East Division title in only the program’s fourth year as a full-time Sun Belt Conference and FBS member.

• Coastal’s Sun Belt Conference championship title defense is off to a 1-0 SBC start this season with a 59-6 win over ULM (Oct. 2) last week.

BUSTING THROUGH THE SUN BELT

• Coastal finished the 2020 regular season at 8-0 in conference play, posting their best conference record since joining the Sun Belt as a full-time member in 2017.

• Prior to this season, Coastal had not won more than two conference games in any season since joining the Sun Belt in 2017 and just six total conference games in the program’s history in the Sun Belt.

YEAR                         CONFERENCE                       OVERALL

2017                                2-6                       3-9

2018                                2-6                       5-7

2019                                2-6                       5-7

2020                                8-0                    11-1

2021                                1-0                       5-0

ELITE COMPANY

• Since the start of the 2020 season, the Chanticleers have put themselves in an elite company going 16-1 overall entering this week of play.

Record Since the Start of the 2020 Season

RANK        TEAM                         RECORD

1.                 Alabama                               17-0

2.                 Coastal Carolina                16-1

3.                 BYU *                                     15-1

*BYU’s loss came to Coastal Carolina

SUN BELT WINS COMPLETE

• With the 59-6 home win over ULM (Oct. 2) last Saturday, the Chanticleers have now defeated every team in the Sun Belt at least once since joining the league in 2017.

Versus SBC Teams

TEAM                       RECORD           LAST

Appalachian State   1-6     W, 34-23 (2020)

Arkansas State         1-3     W, 52-23 (2020)

Georgia Southern    2-5     W, 28-14 (2020)

Georgia State           2-2       W, 51-0 (2020)

Louisiana                   2-1     W, 30-27 (2020)

ULM                           1-3       W, 59-6 (2021)

South Alabama         1-1       W, 23-6 (2020)

Texas State               2-1     W, 49-14 (2020)

Troy                            2-2     W, 42-38 (2020)

SUN BELT STREAK

• The Chanticleers enter Sun Belt Conference play this week at Arkansas State (Oct. 7) riding a 10-game winning streak in conference play.

• The Chanticleers won their final conference game in 2019 and went a perfect 8-0 in SBC play last season on their way to the 2020 Sun Belt Conference Championship title.

• CCU is off to a 1-0 start this year in SBC coming off a win at home over ULM (Oct. 2).

DATE        OPPONENT                RESULT

11/30/19   Texas State                  W, 24-21

10/3/20     Arkansas State            W, 52-23

10/14/20   at #21 Louisiana          W, 30-27

10/24/20   Georgia Southern       W, 28-14

10/31/20   at Georgia State            W, 51-0

11/7/20     South Alabama              W, 23-6

11/21/20   Appalachian State      W, 34-23

11/28/20   at Texas State              W, 49-14

12/12/20   at Troy                          W, 42-38

10/2/21     ULM                                 W, 59-6

SERIES VERSUS A-STATE

• The Chanticleers are 1-3 all-time versus Arkansas State, including having dropped both meetings in Jonesboro, Ark. (2017 and 2019).

• CCU defeated A-State by a score of 52-23 last season in Conway, S.C., the Chants’ first win in the series.

DATE        OPPONENT                RESULT

10/14/17   at Arkansas State          L, 17-51

11/10/18   at Coastal Carolina       L, 16-44

11/16/19   at Arkansas State          L, 27-28

10/3/20     at Coastal Carolina     W, 52-23

SCOUTING THE RED WOLVES

• Under veteran head coach Butch Jones, Arkansas State is 1-4 this season overall and 0-1 in SBC play after losing last Saturday on the road at Georgia Southern (Oct. 2).

• The Red Wolves are 1-1 at home this season but have been road warriors as of late, playing their last three games on the road.

• A-State has put up some points this season, scoring 160 points to average 32.0 points per game, however, the Red Wolves have given up even more at 228 points, an average of 45.6 per contest on the year.

• The offense has done most of its work through the air, as the quarterback duo of James Blackman (102-172-4, 1264 yards, 8 TDs) and Layne Hatcher (49-79-2, 621 yards, 7 TDs) has combined to throw for 1,885 yards, 15 touchdowns, and six interceptions.

• However, the rushing game has been non-existent, as the Red Wolves have rushed for just 483 yards on the season overall and average just 3.3 yards per rush on the year.

• Five players, led by wideout Corey Rucker’s team-high 28 catches, 468 yards, and six touchdowns, have double-digit catches.

• The A-State defense is giving up on average 563.8 yards per game this season, including 263.2 yards per game on the ground and 300.6 yards per contest through the air.

ROAD STREAK

• Coastal will head to A-State (Oct. 7) on a five-game winning streak in true road games.

Winning Streak in True Road Contests

9/12/20     at Kansas                      W, 38-23

10/14/20   at #21 Louisiana          W, 30-27

10/31/20   at Georgia State            W, 51-0

11/28/20   at Texas State              W, 49-14

12/12/20   at Troy                          W, 42-38

12/18/21   at Buffalo                     W, 28-25

NON-SATURDAY GAMES

• Coastal enters Thursday night’s game at Arkansas State (Oct. 7) at 7-5 all-time in non-traditional Saturday contests.

CCU on Thursday Nights

9/25/03     at North Greenville    W, 49-39

9/3/09       at Kent State                    L, 0-18

11/19/15   at Liberty                        L, 21-24

11/17/16   Liberty                             W, 42-7

11/7/19     Louisiana                          L, 7-48

9/2/21       The Citadel                   W, 52-14

EFFICIENT EXECUTION

• The Coastal offense has been extremely efficient thus far this season, which includes only three turnovers over 314 total plays.

• In the win over The Citadel (Sept. 2), CCU scored on each of their first seven offensive possessions and eight of their 10 drives overall.

• Versus Kansas (Sept. 10), the offense scored on six of their 10 possessions and was a perfect 5-for-5 in the red zone.

• The offense took a dip in its efficiency in the road win at Buffalo (Sept. 18), scoring on only four of its 10 offensive possessions for the game.

• However, versus UMass (Sept. 25), the Chants scored on eight of their nine offensive series with the game ending on its ninth drive in the win.

• In their SBC opener last Saturday versus ULM (Oct. 2), the ‘Teal Team 6’ offense scored on eight of their 11 offensive possessions, including seven touchdowns.

Efficient Offense

GAME         SCORES DRIVES   TDS/FGS

The Citadel                8             10              7/1

Kansas                        6             10              6/0

at Buffalo                   5             10              4/1

UMass                        8               9              7/1

ULM                            8             11              7/1

TOTALS                 35             50            31/4

YARDS PER PLAY IN 2021

• Coastal’s offense this season is averaging 8.4 yards per play, which is among the nation’s leaders and is the highest average in CCU single-season history.

Highest Avg. Yards Gained/Per Play in NCAA

RK     TEAM                               AVG. YARDS

1.        Ohio State                                      8.57

2.        Coastal Carolina                                  8.38

3.        Western Kentucky                        7.57

4.        Arizona State                                 7.23

5.        North Carolina                               7.18

           Pittsburgh                                       7.18

BEING ELITE

• This season, McCall ranks among the nation’s leaders in several statistical categories.

STAT                                                #    NCAA

Completion Percentage           80.2         1st

Passing Efficiency                    225.0         1st

Yards Per Pass Attempt          12.94         1st

Passing Yards Per Completion 16.13       5th

Points Responsible For                78      17th

Points Responsible For Per Game 15.6 20th

Passing TDs                                    10     22nd

Passing Yards                            1113      48th

Total Offense Per Game         236.4       51st

Passing Yards Per Game         222.6      53rd

NO-FLY ZONE

• Coastal Carolina is the only team in all of FBS nationally to have not allowed a passing touchdown this season.

Fewest TD Passes Allowed in 2021

Rank  Team              Passing TDs Allowed

1.         Coastal Carolina                               0

2.         Georgia                                                1

            Arkansas                                              1

            Bowling Green                                   1

• This season, the Chanticleers on average have allowed just 130.8 passing yards per game which ranks first in the Sun Belt and third nationally.

Fewest Avg. Passing Yards Allowed in 2021

Rank  Team                                              Avg.

1.         Georgia                                        110.0

2.         Arkansas                                      129.8

3.         Coastal Carolina                       130.8

4.         Iowa State                                   144.2

5.         Houston                                       144.4

STOUT AGAINST THE RUN

• Over the last two years under defensive coordinator Chad Staggs, the Chanticleers have held teams under 100 rushing yards nine times, including three times in 2019 and twice this season.

Games with less than 100-yards rushing

Date               Opponent                       Yards

9/14/19         Norfolk State                        42

11/16/19       at Arkansas State                71

11/30/19       Texas State                           36

10/3/20         Arkansas State                     36

10/31/20       at Georgia State                  76

11/7/20         South Alabama                    93

12/12/20       at Troy                                   89

9/25/21         UMass                                   28

10/2/21         ULM                                       72

• This held in each of the last two weeks versus UMass (Sept. 25), as the Chants’ defense held the Minutemen to just 28 rushing yards on 24 carries, an average of just 1.2 yards per rush, and against ULM (Oct. 2) surrendering just 72 yards on 31 carries to the Warhawks.

• The 28 rushing yards allowed versus UMass (Sept. 25) was not only the fewest allowed by the Coastal defense this season but also the fourth-fewest rushing yards surrendered in a single game in program history and the fewest allowed in a game since becoming a full-time FBS member in 2017.

Fewest Rushing Yards Allowed in a Game

Date               Opponent                       Yards

11/17/16       Liberty                                  -23

10/13/07       Chowan                                   8

10/20/12       at VMI                                    16

9/25/21          UMass                                   28

11/8/03         at Davidson                          31

Courtesy – Coastal Carolina Athletics

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