The Daily Nole

FSU Football: A First Look at Charleston Southern

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After a thrilling 45-34 victory over Ole Miss in Orlando to open the 2016 season, Florida State will play in front of its home crowd for the first time this season on Saturday as it hosts Charleston Southern.

The Buccaneers may be an FCS squad, but they’re a very good FCS squad. They get the Seminoles on a short week and with two games already under their belts. Charleston Southern reached the FCS Playoffs a season ago and are 1-1 this season. The loss was a hard-fought 24-17 defeat at the hands of reigning FCS national champion North Dakota State in overtime on the road.

On Charleston Southern

Record: 1-1
Offensive Ranks: 39th in FCS total yards per game (395), 92nd in FCS passing yards per game (108), 10th in FCS rushing yards per game (287), 25th in FCS points per game (37)
Defensive Ranks: 24th in FCS yards per game allowed (282.5), 20th in FCS passing defense (133), 50th in FCS rushing defense (149.5), 26th in FCS scoring defense (15.5)
Last Game: Beat Kentucky State 57-7 on Saturday.

On Offense

Charleston Southern is clearly a run-heavy, triple-option football team with two backs already over 100 yards rushing for the season. Mike Holloway is averaging almost 15 yards per carry and leads FCS with four rushing touchdowns and ranks fourth with 194 yards on the ground. Alan Barnwell showed explosion with a 70-yard touchdown in a 57-7 win over Kentucky State last week.

The Buccaneers usually won’t throw the ball unless you make them. Charleston Southern has thrown just 29 passes this season, completing just 13 for 216 yards.

On Defense

Defensively, Charleston Southern is also one of the best FCS teams. The Buccaneers held North Dakota State to just 17 points in regulation to open the year.

Safety Corbin Jackson leads the team with 16 total tackles. Defensive back D.J. Curl and Mike Taylor each have a team-high 1.5 sacks for the season. Cornerback Troy McGowens has the team’s only interception. Zane Cruz is the team’s best linebacker.

On Special Teams

Tyler Tekac does the kicking for Charleston Southern and is 0-for-1 on field goals this season, but a perfect 7-for-7 on extra points. Senior Truett Burns has had a solid start punting for the Buccaneers with five of his nine punts being downed inside the 20.

The strength of special teams however, is returner Darius Hammond. Although he’s been bottled up as rusher this season, Hammond is averaging nearly 24 yards per punt return with a long of 49.


Charleston Southern is an extremely talented FCS program coached by Jamey Chadwell. The Buccaneers showed they were championship contenders with their performance against North Dakota State. The Buccaneers don’t have nearly the talent to keep up with Florida State, but with the Seminoles having just a couple days to prepare and Charleston Southern’s run-heavy attack, this one could stay interesting for a half.

Mike Ferguson is the editor of The Daily Nole. Follow Mike on Twitter @MikeWFerguson

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