• By Jacob Bashura

Chanticleer football offseason progression

Coastal Carolina’s 2021 football season came to a conclusion when the team won their first bowl game in program history, defeating the Northern Illinois Huskies 47-41 last second.

The win capped off two historical breakout seasons for the Chanticleers, finishing with a 22-3 record over the 2020 and 2021 seasons. This marks the fifth best record in the football bowl subdivision (FBS), behind Georgia, Cincinnati, LA Lafayette and Alabama.

Heading into the offseason, the Chanticleers are preparing to shift into a new roster as a number of players graduate and/or depart for the NFL draft. Along with departures come new arrivals including freshmen, transfers and potentially walk-ons.

Three key Chanticleers who declared for this year's NFL draft include tight end Isaiah Likely, running back Shermari Jones, and defensive end Jeffrey Gunter. Despite rumors that quarterback Grayson McCall would transfer and play somewhere else for one more year, he posted on Twitter in December and announced he would be returning to finish his collegiate career in teal.

Super senior linebackers, Teddy Gallagher and Silas Kelly have both finished their eligibility and cannot return for the 2022 season. Additional notable athletes that will be retuning include cornerback D’Jordan Strong and running backs Braydon Bennett and Reese White.

One addition to the 2022 roster is defensive tackle Ja’Quon Griffin, who will be transferring to Coastal Carolina from Georgia Tech. Griffin has had two or more sacks in his last three seasons with the Yellow Jackets.

The Chanticleers welcome 14 three-star freshmen recruits, including wide receivers, linemen on both offense and defense, linebackers, cornerbacks and a quarterback. Perhaps the most unexpected signee is freshman punter Evan Crenshaw. This five-star recruit from Ponta Verda Beach, Fla. was ranked as the no. 2 and no. 3 punter in the class of 2022 by kicking evaluators.

The Chanticleers look to extend their unforgettable uprising in the 2022 season with the help of quarterback Grayson McCall as well as new and returning talent.