Kennesaw State to SoCon not likely
by Adam Carrington
acarrington@mdjonline.com
June 11, 2013 01:11 AM | 2386 views | 4 4 comments | 23 23 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Kennesaw State athletic director Vaughn Williams talked about the Owls conference search at the annual Georgia Sports Writers Association meeting at the MDJ offices.
Kennesaw State athletic director Vaughn Williams talked about the Owls conference search at the annual Georgia Sports Writers Association meeting at the MDJ offices.
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MARIETTA — Kennesaw State athletic director Vaughn Williams said the Owls have no intentions of leaving the Atlantic Sun Conference and is pursuing a conference where they could be an associate football member.

“The conference will probably find me before I find it,” Williams said at the Georgia Sports Writers Association meeting at the Marietta Daily Journal offices. “A lot of discussion is happening. It has happened in the last couple of weeks. A lot of the FCS conferences and mid-majors are deciding which direction they are going to go. Our job is to take sure we are the topic of discussion.

“We’re just looking for a place to play football.”

The Southern Conference is now an unlikely choice for Kennesaw State, having just welcomed Atlantic Sun members East Tennessee State and Mercer and former Southern Conference member VMI. Vaughn said the Owls may not be a good fit with the private school sector of the conference.

However, the Big South, Ohio Valley and Colonial Athletic Association are still potential options.

While Williams is working on finding a conference and working on completeing Kennesaw State’s schedule for its inaugural season in 2015, new coach Brian Bohannon is trying to put together a schedule for his staff this fall.

“It will be a unique situation,” Bohannon said. “This is probably the first time since I was 8-years old that I don’t have my fall planned out for me. I’ve been a water boy, ball boy, jersey boy, player and a coach my whole life.”

A large amount of that time will be recruiting — which he said is a 365-day-a-year job — and initially there is no plan to go beyond the Georgia state lines.

After hiring his first three assistants – offensive coordinator Grant Chesnut and assistants Liam Klein and Shane Bowen – the small KSU staff visited close to 460 high schools in a four-week span.

Bohannon has recently added new members to his staff – head of football operations Jay Bailey, A-backs coach Tim Glanton and quarterbacks coach Brett Gilliland – to help implement his plan. A defensive coordinator is expected to be hired later this month.

The Owls are expected to sign their first class in February of 2014, which will consist of 25 to 30 players.

To aid in the recruitment, the Owls will host a summer football camp in July and will spend the fall months visiting other college programs to see how games and practices are run.

Once Kennesaw State signs its first class next February, Bohannon said the team will hold an open tryout in the spring. Bohannon said he expects to some of those tryout players to help fill roster positions on the first team.

“We’ve already had guys who told me they are coming to school and are waiting on that tryout,” Bohannon said. “A lot of men will want to come back closer to home. We will supplement with that and try to get (numbers) up to 65 or 70. When we bring them in in the fall, we should have enough to practice.”
Comments
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Owl Jon
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June 14, 2013
What a shame for the rest of KSU sports. Why not move to a more eecognizable conference. That will improve the quality of recruits across the board. SoCon or OVC are the only conferences as an option- but the AD never asked me.
Dave H.
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June 11, 2013
Build regional rivalries in the SoCon. A-Sun member Stetson is still looking for a football home as well, so joining with KSU would give the SoCon 12 members.

Do NOT make the same mistake that Georgia State made and join the CAA or some other non-regional conference. As soon as the initial, inaugural season buzz passes, KSU fan interest would fade. Learn from the mistakes of predecessors, do not repeat them.
Football Fan
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June 12, 2013
Totally agree with Dave H. Without a regional affiliation I will not have any interest. What about travel cost? The CAA is a terrible consideration.
William Williams
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June 14, 2013
Agree 100%, Dave. I think KSU should try for the SoCon. KSU is about the same size as Georgia Southern and has great potential. I don't understand the AD's comment about not fitting well with private schools? the ASun is about half private too?

It sounds like KSU may need better, or smarter, leadership.

While I wish KSU the best, I think it would be foolish for them not to try to follow their travel partner, Mercer, to the SoCon.
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