CSU vs. Citadel Game NotesSeptember 6, 2006
By CSU Sports Information
CHARLESTON, S.C. - CSU finally broke through against Presbyterian, earning a victory for the second time ever, snapping a 12-game losing streak to the Blue Hose. Now the Bucs will look to beat the Citadel for the first time as they face off for the fourth time on Saturday at 7 p.m. inside Johnson Hagood Stadium.
CSU vs. Citadel Game Notes
TODAY’S GAME: Today’s game will mark the fourth meeting between these two cross-town rivals, with The Citadel having gotten the better of the previous three meetings. After two blow-outs in the first two games of the series, CSU closed the game last year, leading late in the game, but falling to the Bulldogs 28-14.
The Buccaneers will attempt to start 2-0 in a season for the first time in school history after winning their opening game for the first time since the 2001 season.
LAST TIME OUT: Last week, the Buccaneers finally got the proverbial “monkey” off their backs as they beat Presbyterian College for the first time in 12 years. It is just the second time that CSU has beaten the Blue Hose.
The Citadel took on Big 12 opponent Texas A&M to open their 2006 campaign, falling 35-3.
WHO TO WATCH: The Buccaneers placed five players on the preseason All-Conference team. Senior quarterback Collin Drafts and junior linebacker Jada Ross were each given the honor, and were picked as the offensive and defensive players of the year, respectively. Junior wide receiver Maurice Price, junior offensive lineman Rick Howell, and junior safety C.J. Hirschman, were the other Buccaneers named to the preseason team.
RESPECT YOUR ELDERS: Charleston Southern returns 17 starters from last year’s championship squad. The Bucs lost just five seniors, all of which earned All-Conference honors in 2005. The CSU offense brings back seven starters, while eight return on defense. Sophomore punter Hart Pearson and junior field goal kicker Nick Ellis return as well.
WHO’S YOUR JADA? Junior linebacker Jada Ross continues to be one of the best linebackers in the country. Named the 2005 Big South Defensive Player of the year, he was picked to repeat the honor in 2006. Ross set the CSU record for tackles in a season with 128 in 2005. His 128 tackles was sixth nationally in 2005. Ross picked up where he left off, leading CSU in their opening game with 14 tackles, including 10 solo tackles. Ross also recorded three tackles-for-loss in the victory.
MOCK DRAFTS: Senior quarterback Collin Drafts finished 2005 18th nationally in completions per game and 24th in passing efficiency. Drafts completed 60.94 percent of his passes, accumulating 2,594 yards. Entering his senior season, Drafts already owns every passing record in the CSU record books.
THE PRICE IS RIGHT: Junior receiver Maurice Price played in just eight games last season, but was at the top of the country in every category. His 9.0 receptions per game was the tops in the country, while his 130.4 yards per game put him in second place. In the 2006 season-opener, Price brought in nine passes for 93 yards, the most in the Big South in both categories.
LEADING THE WAY: Jay Mills begins his fourth season as the head football coach at Charleston Southern University, posting a 13-20 record in his first three seasons.
The Buccaneers posted the first ever winning record with a 7-4 mark in 2005. CSU also captured a share of the first Conference Championship in school history.
Prior to coming to CSU, Mills spent seven seasons at Harvard, directing one of the top offensive units in all of 1-AA football. He has extensive coaching experience at several schools, getting his start as a volunteer assistant coach at Notre Dame under Coach Lou Holtz. Mills’ previous experience as a head coach came at the University of Minnesota-Morris, an NCAA Division II program, in the early 1990’s.
I GOT YOUR BACK: CSU returns one of the best linebacking corps in America in juniors Jada Ross and Josh Mitchell. In the season opener against Presbyterian, the duo combined for 27 tackles.
AWARDS APLENTY: Following a memorable end to the 2005 season, CSU was handsomely rewarded. Buccaneer Head Coach Jay Mills was named the Big South Coach of the Year, while quarterback Collin Drafts and linebacker Jada Ross were named the Big South Offensive and Defensive Player of the Year, respectively. Wide Receiver Maurice Price was named the Southeast Region Player of the Year and the Bucs were named the Team of the Year by Don Hansen’s Football Gazette. The Football Gazette named six Bucs to the All-Southeast team in 2005.
AMERICA TAKING NOTICE: Charleston Southern has grabbed the attention of the national media. Junior wide receiver Maurice Price was named to the I-AA.org Preseason All-America Third Team. Price, along with junior linebacker Jada Ross, and senior quarterback Collin Drafts, were all given preseason All-America honors by the Football Gazette. Price earned second team honors, while Ross was named to the third team and Drafts was named honorable mention.
WHO’S THE BRAINS OF THIS OUTFIT? Former Buccaneer Adam DeGraffenreid was one of two recipients of the National Scholar-Athlete Award, given by the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics. A banquet was held in his honor in New Orleans, La. over the summer. DeGraffenreid was named the Big South Scholar-Athlete of the year both seasons at CSU, and was awarded the Big South’s Christenberry Award for graduating with a perfect 4.0 GPA while double-majoring in Biology and Chemistry. He was also named to the I-AA Athletics Director’s Academic All-Star team twice for his performance in the classroom.
HOME SWEET HOME: CSU was 5-2 at home in 2005, winning their last four home games at the end of the season. The Bucs are 21-19 all-time going into this season in the confines of CSU Stadium since it was renovated and the Whitfield Center was built in 1999.