Record crowd watches as Coastal Carolina rolls past Kansas for another big win
CONWAY, S.C. — Coastal Carolina had the national spotlight with an ESPN2 audience and a record crowd of 17,697, and the Chants took advantage of them with a 49-22 win over Kansas on Friday night at Brooks Stadium.
The Chants (2-0) allowed the Big 12's Jayhawks, the first team from a Power Five conference to play in Conway, to hang around well into the second half, but scored the final 21 points of the game to pull away for the 27-point win.
Quarterback Grayson McCall was again efficient, completing 17 of 21 passes for 245 yards and two touchdowns, Jaivon Heiligh had his fourth consecutive 100-yard receiving game and Reese White rushed for more than 100 yards.
Coastal entered the game ranked 17th in the Associated Press Top 25 Poll.
White comes up big in 'Whiteout'
Junior running back Reese White had his best career game on a night when Coastal Carolina held a ‘Whiteout’ promotion, encouraging fans to wear white.
White wore out the Jayhawks defense, running for a career-high in yards and touchdowns with 102 yards and three TDs on 14 carries.
White was expected to take on a larger role now has five TDs on the young season after rushing for 62 yards and two TDs on seven carries in last week’s win over Citadel.
A freshman force
Freshman Josaiah Stewart had a coming out party Friday. The true freshman, a 6-foot-2, 245-pound defensive lineman, had 3.5 of CCU’s six sacks and was second on the team with seven tackles.
Stewart decommited from Boston College to attend Coastal.
He graduated from Everett High School in Massachusetts, the same school CCU senior tight end Isaiah Likely graduated from, and Likely likely had something to do with Stewart finding his way to Conway.
Stewart had just one assisted tackle in his college debut last week against Citadel.
Is Coastal’s D slow, or is Jason Bean that fast?
The speed of Kansas QB Jason Bean was a problem Friday night.
The Jayhawks’ starting quarterback, a transfer from North Texas, was a sprinter in high school and showed his exceptional speed with touchdowns runs of 34 and 46 yards while gaining 102 yards on 13 carries.
The 34-yarder came on a scramble to pull Kansas within 13 points late in the first half. He ran past linebackers like they were nearly standing still.
Bean took a designed QB run from the shotgun 46 yards for a TD in the third quarter, racing past a defensive back that appeared to have an angle at the sideline to pull Kansas within 6 at 28-22. Coastal managed to contain him for the remainder of the game, allowing them to stretch the lead to the final margin of 27.
A special effort
Coastal had a special night on special teams.
Alex Spillum blocked a punt and recovered it in the end zone for a touchdown in the first half.
The starting safety was unblocked on his rush from the right side of the center.
The last time CCU blocked a punt and returned it for a TD was at VMI in 2012.
Spillum appeared to make his second big special teams play of the game by blocking a 56-yard field goal attempt by Jacob Borcila in the second half. But junior Jacob Proche was ruled offside to negate the block and CCU stopped Kansas on a fourth-and-1 on the next play.
Though the Chants gave up a couple long returns on its first two kickoffs to allow Kansas to start possessions around its 35-yard line, and a kickoff out of bounds again gave the Jayhawks possession at the 35, the special teams units otherwise excelled.
The one negative CCU coach Jamey Chadwell expressed from last week’s 52-14 win over Citadel was a pair of undisciplined unsportsmanlike conduct penalties for celebrations following big plays.
The Chants apparently didn’t learn from their mistakes, and it cost them early against Kansas.
Coastal took an unsportsmanlike celebration penalty after D’Jordan Strong appeared to intercept a pass on third-and-9 at the Kansas 35.
But the ball hit the ground and the play was overturned upon review. Kansas retained the ball and gained a first down with the 15-yard penalty, and drove another 50 yards for a touchdown to take a 9-7.
CCU moved up to No. 17 in the AP Poll from No. 22 following last week’s win over Citadel, and from No. 24 to No. 19 in the USA Today Coaches Poll, and could move up again this week depending on Saturday’s action.
Coastal plays its only non-conference away game of the season next week at Buffalo. It’s will also be CCU’s first Saturday game of the season and has a scheduled noon kickoff.