Back Hot Read: Coastal Gets Signature Win

Hot Read: Coastal Gets Signature Win

By BJ Bennett
SouthernPigskin.com
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Coastal Carolina remains undefeated, beating Appalachian State 34-23.

1. What an awesome, crazy, fun football game. What a showcase for the Sun Belt. What a statement for Coastal Carolina. Now 8-0, the undefeated Chanticleers are officially the league favorites and have clearly established and validated themselves as one of college football's best teams. Coastal Carolina continues to make history, with the Chants' latest triumph standing as a meaningful one given that Appalachian State had won at least a share of four consecutive conference titles. This is, without question, a signature win. Coastal Carolina remains one of the best stories of this entire season, one that just keeps getting better.

2. This is a resume, for the fierce roosters from Canterbury Tales, that is more impressive than some might think; and one that has the potential to be even more worthy of big picture consideration. Coastal Carolina not only has wins over nationally-ranked Louisiana and traditional power Appalachian State, in addition to a rout of Big XII foe Kansas, the Chanticleers have an upcoming contest with Liberty and a likely rematch with the Ragin' Cajuns in the Sun Belt Championship Game. In what has already been a remarkable season for Coastal Carolina, there may be a lot more still to come.

3. The Chanticleers flexed their muscle in the second half. Trailing at the break, Coastal Carolina outscored Appalachian State 28-3 in the third and fourth quarters, with D'Jordan Strong's late interception return for a touchdown standing as the emphatic exclamation point. Even through the chaos of Grayson McCall's fumble at the goaline and multiple failed two-point conversions, the Chanticleers were the more determined and poised team in the moments that mattered most. Coastal Carolina was clutch and relentless in the game's defining moments.

4. Big plays sparked the Chanticleers. Grayson McCall had a 75-yard touchdown pass to Isaiah Likely. McCall, a versatile playmaker who had another big game, also had a 62-yard touchdown run. D'Jordan Strong, who had two interceptions, close out the game with a late 38-yard pick-six. Massimo Biscardi booted a 51-yard field goal. There were a number of highlight-reel plays for Coastal Carolina, momentum swings which helped the Chanticleers win the biggest game in program history.

5. Mistakes proved costly for Appalachian State. Zac Thomas threw three interceptions, his first multi-pick game as an upperclassman, and the Mountaineers had eight penalties, compared to just one turnover and one penalty for Coastal Carolina.

BJ Bennett - B.J. Bennett is SouthernPigskin.com's founder and publisher. He is the co-host of "Three & Out" with Kevin Thomas and Ben Troupe on the "Southern Pigskin Radio Network". Email: bj@espncoastal.com / Twitter: @BJBennettSports