The Coastal Carolina Chants hope to improve on last season’s 5-7 record as they begin training camp for their 2019 campaign.
Jamey Chadwell will begin his first full season at the helm of the Chants. He was the interim coach in 2017 after former head coach Joe Moglia took a medical leave of absence.
Chadwell said the Chants have been preparing hard during the offseason and are excited to hit the ground running for the upcoming season.
“I feel like we had a great summer with our team as far as building the things necessary to try and have a successful football program,” he said. “They are learning the way we want to do things. The additions that we made to our staff in all areas have been a big hit for us. I’m excited about to see what type of team we are going to have and how they respond to these next 30 days as we are preparing for our opener.”
Chadwell said while his team is young and inexperienced, it is up to the coaching staff and upperclassmen to provide that framework of success for them.
“I think 65 percent of our team is still freshman, redshirt freshman or sophomores so we are really young,” Chadwell said. “I think they are still learning how to compete on a daily basis with the expectations of coming and giving their best every day. You have to train those guys; it’s not something that’s natural. We are trying to train them every day on what it takes to be successful at this level.”
Coastal Carolina will have new defensive coordinator in Chad Staggs after Marvin Sanders resigned to pursue other opportunities.
“I think he (Sanders) got an opportunity that he felt was better for him and you can’t fault people for that,” Chadwell said. “Obviously the timing wasn’t great. You have to adapt and adjust. Fortunately we have coaches here that have been coordinators before that know how to coordinate a defense so I don’t know if the transition will be that big of a difference.”
He is very familiar with Coach Staggs who was Chadwell’s defensive coordinator at Charleston Southern from 2013-16 when Chadwell was the head coach of the Buccaneers.
“I think his best attribute in my opinion is that he gets the guys to play with an edge and a passion,” Chadwell said. “They are going to play hard and chase the ball, things that you want your team to do. They are going to be competitive in every situation. He does a great job in that.”
Chadwell has not named a starting quarterback yet and sophomores Fred Payton and Bryce Carpenter will be competing for that role. He plans to rotate the duo during camp and name the starter hopefully by the first game.
“I was hoping in the spring one of them would really take the job and for whatever reason they did not do that,” Chadwell said. “Both of those guys have great qualities of a quarterback. They’re both good leaders. They both work extremely hard and are humble. Regardless of who our quarterback is our team will rally around those guys because they see how they work in the summer. It’s a dead heat right now in the competition.”
After being primarily a 4-3 defense the past three seasons, the Chants will be switching it up and moving over the 3-4 formation.
“We will base out of the 3-4, but you’ll see us do a lot of different things,” Chadwell said. “You can be a lot more multiple out of a three down front. It causes a lot more problems for the offense. It creates mismatches and a lot of things you have to prepare for. We are not going to be able to just line up and beat people playing straight defense. We have to do some different things and the 3-4 allows us to do that.”
Chadwell said the defensive front seven is probably one of the Chants biggest strengths.
“Defensively, I think our defensive line has a chance to be a really solid group,” said Chadwell. Our challenge there is that we don’t have tons there behind them. I also feel solid about our linebackers. Silas Kelly and Teddy Gallagher are two solid players in the Sun Belt Conference. Again, depth behind them is our biggest challenge. The front seven has to be leading us on defense. We are very young in the secondary and that’s a concern.”
Offensively in the Chant’s spread option base, running back CJ Marable who recorded a team-high 975 all-purpose yards in 2018 is expected to be a big contributor. According to Chadwell, Marable has a chance to be a “really special player in the league.”
The offensive line will return a few starters from last year but will have to maintain their “consistency,” according to Chadwell. He said the receivers are young and inexperienced but have a chance to “surprise” some people this fall.
The team will have 25 practices leading up to the first game of the season against Eastern Michigan at 3:30 p.m. Aug. 31 at Brooks Stadium.
• Aug. 31 HOME Eastern Michigan
• Sep. 7 AWAY Kansas
• Sep. 14 HOME Norfolk State
• Sep. 21 AWAY UMass
• Sept. 28 AWAY App. State
• Oct. 12 HOME Georgia State
• Oct. 19 AWAY Georgia Southern
• Nov. 2 HOME Troy
• Nov. 7 HOME Louisiana
• Nov. 16 AWAY Arkansas State
• Nov. 23 AWAY ULM
• Nov. 30 HOME Texas State