Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Big South Holds Media Day in Charlotte

CHARLOTTE – The Big South Conference kicked off its eighteenth football season with its annual media day in Charlotte, North Carolina today. On the agenda were announcements of the preseason all-conference teams as well as expected conference finishes for the conference season. Defending champion Kennesaw State was picked as a favorite to repeat as conference champions. Kennesaw State's Chandler Burks and Bryson Armstrong were named the preseason offensive and defensive players of the year.

Joining the Big South this year will be the Campbell Camels, who have competed in the nonconference Pioneer Football League since starting football a decade ago. Head coach Mike Minter said he was "ecstatic" about joining the FCS league this season. "Five years ago, we put this vision ahead. We said we wanted to be scholarship football. Five years later, that's what we got. We said we wanted to be a winning program. We were dead last in Division I football. Five years later, we're a winning program."

Looking to rebound from a disappointing 2017 season are the Gardner-Webb Bulldogs and head coach Carroll McCray. "Offensively, we have some experience up front, that's a good place to start on offense. We're very youthful at quarterback, gonna be a first-year guy taking snaps, gonna stay with him the whole season, so we've got some growing to do there. Defensively, we have some experience on the back end of our defense, but we're youthful up front in our defensive line. Those are the things we have to mesh together in camp."

Campbell and Kennesaw State open the 2018 season on Thursday night, Aug. 30, while Monmouth will open the campaign on the road on Friday, Aug. 31. Gardner-Webb and Charleston Southern begin play on Saturday, Sept. 1, while Presbyterian begins its slate on Saturday, Sept. 8. The first conference game is scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 6, and the regular-season concludes Saturday, Nov. 17, with the Big South champion receiving the league’s automatic bid to the FCS Playoffs.

2018 Preseason Poll (first-place votes)

1. Kennesaw State (17)
2. Monmouth (1)
3. Charleston Southern
4. Gardner-Webb
5. Campbell
6. Presbyterian College

2018 Big South Football Preseason All-Conference Teams

QB Chandler Burks, R-Sr., Kennesaw State
RB Pete Guerriero, R-Soph., Monmouth
RB Darnell Holland, Sr., Kennesaw State
WR Reggie White Jr., R-Sr., Monmouth
WR Justin Sumpter, R-Sr., Kennesaw State
WR Kameron Brown, R-Jr., Charleston Southern
TE Jake Powell, R-Jr., Monmouth
OL C.J. Collins, R-Sr., Kennesaw State
OL Ryan Wetzel, R-Sr., Monmouth
OL Joseph Alexander Jr., R-Sr., Kennesaw State
OL Ryan Warrior, Sr., Kennesaw State
OL Russ Clayton, R-Sr., Monmouth

DL Solomon Brown, R-Sr., Charleston Southern
DL Desmond Johnson, R-Jr., Kennesaw State
DL Johnny Robinson, Sr., Charleston Southern
DL McKenzie Billingslea, Sr., Kennesaw State
LB Bryson Armstrong, R-Soph., Kennesaw State
LB Anthony Gore Jr., R-Sr., Kennesaw State
LB J.D. Sosebee, R-Jr., Charleston Southern
LB Jack Ryan, R-Sr., Campbell
DB Jace White, Sr., Kennesaw State
DB Tymere Berry, Jr., Monmouth
DB Shadarius Hopkins, Sr., Charleston Southern
DB Dorian Walker, Jr., Kennesaw State

PK Justin Thompson, Sr., Kennesaw State
P Kyle Reighard, R-Jr., Charleston Southern
KR Pete Guerriero, R-Soph., Monmouth
PR Taz Lindsey, Sr., Charleston Southern
LS Drew McCracken, Sr., Kennesaw State

QB Kenji Bahar, Jr., Monmouth
RB Shaquil Terry, Soph., Kennesaw State
WR Aaron Blockmon, R-Sr., Campbell
TE Riley Hilton, R-Sr., Presbyterian College
OL Will Millikan, Sr., Gardner-Webb
DL Josh Ramseur, R-Sr., Gardner-Webb
LB Diego Zubieta, Sr., Monmouth
DB Brandon Rowland, R-Sr., Charleston Southern
PK Tyler Tekac, Sr., Charleston Southern
P Nicholas Jones, Soph., Kennesaw State
KR Shaquil Terry, Soph., Kennesaw State
PR Jaquan Brooks, R-Jr., Campbell
LS Ethan Ray, R-Soph., Charleston Southern

Chandler Burks, R-Sr., QB, Kennesaw State (Douglasville, Ga.)

Bryson Armstrong, R-Soph., LB, Kennesaw State (Marietta, Ga)