The 2020 Cure Bowl features the 11-0 Coastal Carolina Chanticleers against the 9-1 Liberty Flames. Here is the 2020 Cure Bowl Preview.
Coastal Carolina Chanticleers (11-0)
The Coastal Carolina Chanticleers had a dream of a season, but their hopes to make a New Year’s Six Bowl fell short. They went undefeated with wins over five teams that went above .500, which included the likes of BYU, Louisiana and Appalachian State.
Coastal Carolina’s offense was high-powered, scoring 37.6 points per game. They pass for 223.6 (ranked 70th) and rush for 223.2 yards per game (ranked 15th).
Grayson McCall had an outstanding year under center for the Chanticleers. He passed for 2,170 yards, 23 touchdowns and two interceptions on 69.3 percent completion. Five players have over 200 receiving yards for Coastal Carolina. Jaivon Heiligh leads the team with 52 receptions for 820 yards and 10 touchdowns. Tight end Isaiah Likely has been a great target with 25 receptions for 517 yards and four touchdowns. Running back C.J. Marable has contributed with 30 catches for 220 yards and seven touchdowns.
Marable leads the way on the ground with 162 carries for 844 yards and 12 touchdowns. McCall is the team’s second-leading rusher with 473 yards and six touchdowns. Reese White and Shermari Jones have done well when given opportunities with 468 and 377 rushing yards respectively.
The defense has been solid for Coastal Carolina, only allowing 18.7 points per game. They allow 137.9 rushing yards (ranked 37th) and 202.8 passing yards per game (ranked 32nd). Linebackers Silas Kelly (72 tackles), Teddy Gallagher (71 tackles) and Enock Makonzo (66 tackles) have all had a nose for ball carriers this year. Defensive end Tarron Jackson has led the team with 8.5 sacks, while linebacker Jeffrey Gunter and defensive tackle C.J. Brewer each have 6.5 sacks. Safety Alex Spillum has led the team with three interceptions and four passes defended.
Liberty Flames (9-1)
Liberty was one of the few non-power five teams who were making national headlines. They won nine games, with some wins over some power five programs in Syracuse and Virginia Tech. Their only loss of the season came to NC State.
The Flames has one of the best offenses in the country, which scores 38.3 points per game (ranked 18th). They rush for 252.1 yards (ranked ninth) and pass for 231.4 yards per game (ranked 61st).
Auburn transfer Malik Willis has had a fantastic season for the Flames. He has passed for 2,040 yards, 20 touchdowns and four interceptions on 64 percent completion. Willis has six targets who have over 200 receiving yards on the season. D.J. Stubbs and Kevin Shea each have over 400 receiving yards on the season. Demario Douglas has over 300 receiving yards, while C.J. Yarbrough, C.J. Daniels and Noah Frith each have over 200 receiving yards.
Willis also leads the team in rushing with 807 yards and 10 touchdowns. Joshua Mack has 692 rushing yards and four touchdowns as the team’s lead running back. Peyton Prickett had 505 rushing yards and five touchdowns and Shedro Louis rushed for 431 yards and three scores.
The defense allows 19.2 points per game, which is great given the team’s offensive output. They give up 171.6 passing yards (ranked ninth) and 129.6 rushing yards per game (ranked 27th). Safety Javon Scruggs has led the team with 61 tackles with linebacker Anthony Butler on his heels with 58. Defensive end Tre’Shaun Clark has 4.5 sacks to lead the team. Cornerback Emmanuel Dabney and safety Marcus Haskins are tied with Butler for the team lead with four pass break ups.
Coastal Carolina got no respect all year in the rankings and still have things left to prove. McCall can make all throws necessary and can help out with his legs when necessary, which will be crucial in a game that should be close. The Chanticleers will be properly motivated and also have the players necessary to beat Liberty and remain undefeated.
Coastal Carolina Chanticleers 41 Liberty Flames 37
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