KENNESAW, Ga. (January 7, 2014) – The reality that football is coming to Kennesaw State University became more real on Tuesday when the Big South Conference announced the 2015 conference schedule. The Owls will host Charleston Southern, Gardner-Webb and Monmouth, with their first league game Oct. 17 versus Gardner-Webb at Fifth Third Bank Stadium.
Kennesaw State also will host Monmouth on Oct. 31 and entertain Charleston Southern on Nov. 7. The Owls will play their first Big South road game at Liberty on Oct. 24, and will close out conference play at Coastal Carolina (Nov. 14) and Presbyterian (Nov. 21).
“We’re excited about it. The Big South, what a great year they had this year and we’re excited about getting started in 2015,” head coach Brian Bohannon said. “We’ve got six (conference) games slated for the ’15 season and it’s good to know our league schedule.
“It’s getting closer to playing football here and I think that’s the exciting part for our staff, and with Signing Day around the corner, I think everything is coming into place,” Bohannon added.
Led by co-champion Coastal Carolina, which advanced to the quarterfinals of the FCS playoffs, the Big South Conference went 18-10 against non-conference FCS opponents during the regular-season, defeated five nationally-ranked foes for the first time, and had three members nationally ranked in the Top 25 during the season. The Chanticleers became the first Big South program to reach the quarterfinals of the FCS playoffs.
“They’re all quality opponents and we’ll have our work cut out for us with each one of them,” Bohannon said. “This year has probably been the best year the Big South has had in years as far as Charleston Southern having a great year, Gardner-Webb had a great year. There have been a lot of good things happening in the Big South. It’ll be great to have some teams come to our place for the first time in the conference and that will be exciting for our fans.”
Kennesaw State will play its inaugural game on the road against non-conference foe East Tennessee State at Kermit Tipton Stadium, Steve Spurrier Field on Thursday, Sept. 3, 2015 at 7:30 p.m. (ET). The remaining non-conference schedule will be announced as games are finalized.
Prior to any home opponent being announced, Kennesaw State has already surpassed 2,000 season ticket deposits, representing nearly 60 percent of available tickets at Fifth Third Bank Stadium. While the stadium has a seating capacity of 8,300, only 3,600 tickets will be sold to the public and only available through season ticket purchases.
“This is an exciting time. We’re talking about the conference schedule and having a chance to bring teams in here to play,” Bohannon said. “It’s a great time, and if you want a season ticket you need to get one now. They’re going fast. Fifth Third Bank Stadium is going to be a great place, a great venue to watch college football.”
2015 Big South Conference Schedule
Sat., Oct. 17 GARDNER-WEBB
Sat., Oct. 24 at Liberty
Sat., Oct. 31 MONMOUTH
Sat., Nov. 7 CHARLESTON SOUTHERN
Sat., Nov. 14 at Coastal Carolina
Sat., Nov. 21 at Presbyterian
Bold and CAPS indicate home games at Fifth Third Bank Stadium
Times to be determined and all dates are tentative and subject to change
A Team-By-Team Look at the Big South Conference:
Charleston Southern Buccaneers
· Won a school-record 10 games in 2013 and was nationally-ranked the final eight weeks of the regular-season.
· Set a Big South single-season record with its six road victories in 2013.
· Former CSU All-American defensive back Charles James finished his rookie season with the New York Giants in 2013.
Coastal Carolina Chanticleers
· First team in Big South history to reach the quarterfinal round of the FCS Playoffs in 2013.
· Chanticleers set Big South single-season records for wins (12), points (615), touchdowns (84) and total offense (477.5) in 2013.
· Coastal’s six all-time Big South championships are tied for the most in League history.
Gardner-Webb Runnin’ Bulldogs
· GWU’s seven wins in 2013 was its most since 2003 when the Runnin’ Bulldogs went 8-4.
· Gardner-Webb defeated a League-record three nationally-ranked opponents during the 2013 regular-season.
· Junior defensive lineman Shaquille Riddick finished fifth in the voting for the 2013 Buck Buchanan Award for National Defensive Player of the Year.
· Liberty shared the Big South football title in 2013, the school’s sixth crown – tied for most in League history.
· The Flames own the Big South record for most consecutive games with a point scored at 97 – the last 41 games scoring in double figures.
· Former Flames currently in the NFL include Oakland’s Rashad Jennings and Jacksonville’s Mike Brown.
· Will become the second associate football member in Big South football history when it debuts in the Conference in 2014.
· Head Coach Kevin Callahan is the only head coach in the history of Monmouth football – 21 years, 120-97 record.
· Former Hawks wide receiver Miles Austin is a member of the Dallas Cowboys.
Presbyterian College Blue Hose
· Has been a full-fledged Division I program for just two seasons and is currently the youngest Division I program in the Big South (began transition in 2007-08).
· PC has the smallest enrollment in all of Division I at 1,200 students.
· Former Blue Hose defensive back and current Arizona Cardinal Justin Bethel was voted to the 2014 Pro Bowl roster.