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Joe Moglia’s Absence Comes at a Crucial Time for the Chanticleers

By Jim Johnson
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If there was ever a time for a head coach to miss an entire college football season, it's not the one in which his program is transitioning from FCS to FBS.

Or perhaps it doesn't matter.

Coastal Carolina's Joe Moglia will be forced to take an approximately five month leave in order to address some lingering health problems.

In his words, "For three years now, I have had a bronchial asthmatic reaction to allergies, which causes inflammation around my lungs. The inflammation restricts the lungs, which could create a serious breathing problem.
I want to be clear: I do not have a disease and I am in no danger, but I do need to get this addressed."

New offensive coordinator Jamey Chadwell, hired during the offseason from Charleston Southern, will take the reigns as interim head coach, in Moglia's stead.

For those unfamiliar with Moglia's rise through the coaching ranks, it begins as probably no other did, as a brokerage mogul. As CEO of TD Ameritrade, this financial virtuoso increased the company's client assets from $24 billion to $280 billion, picking up a nice chunk of change for himself along the way.

He left the skyscrapers of Wall Street behind in 2008, in favor of sky-reaching corn stalks of Nebraska, where he took a job as an unpaid intern in order to pursue his passion for coaching.

Fast forward a decade and Moglia sits with a 51-15 record atop the Chanticleers, playoff appearances in every year they were eligible, multiple weeks spent as the top-ranked FCS team, across different season, and a FCS National Coach of the Year Award in his trophy case.

As the program braves these new waters, there may not be a person better equipped to navigate them.

An unexpected coaching change, just weeks ahead of the season, does not lend itself to winning.

However, transition years, in general, do not lend themselves to winning.

Appalachian State and Georgia Southern's respective, and simultaneous, success has set an unreasonable bar for what to expect out of teams moving up from the lower division into the Sun Belt.

Those program's immediate and sustained power within the conference has changed the prism through which FCS to FBS transitions are viewed.

Coastal Carolina, viewed through the lens of losses and wins, will likely not be very good in 2017. And that's fine. In fact, if they're 'not very good' as opposed to 'bad', then that's ultimately good, if that makes any sense.
Regardless of who heads the team, sailing will be far from smooth.

One could argue that it may be better for the perception of the program to skate through this season with Chadwell, with any achievement falling under the classification of overachievement, and then allowing Moglia to step back into his job, fully healthy.

From there, Moglia can simply go right on doing what he's seemingly done his entire adult life -- be better than most everyone else at most everything.

Jim Johnson - Editor of Southern Pigskin, Producer of "Three & Out", and host of "Explosive Recruiting" on the Southern Pigskin Radio Network. E-mail: Twitter: @JimJohnsonSP