Here at Crystal Ball Run, we usually stick to the big names of the FBS but occasionally it's nice to shine a light on the smaller programs and take a look at what's happening around the world of college football. Today, we take a look at the newest football program in the state of Georgia, the Kennesaw State Owls.
A Brief History
Kennesaw State is located around 20 miles north of Atlanta and with an enrollment of over 24,000 students is the third largest University in Georgia behind the University of Georgia and Georgia State University (which also recently started their football program). The University was founded in 1963 as a junior college.
In February of 2013, after several years of planning, KSU announced their official plans for starting a football program. In March, Brian Bohannon was named head coach. Bohannon played for Georgia from 1990 to 1993 and he coached at Georgia Southern from 1997 to 2001 and Georgia Tech from 2008 to 2012.
The first recruiting class
While Bohannon has been on campus since 2013, on National Signing Day (NSD) he finally was able to get a peak at the future of KSU as he brought his first recruits into the fold.
What position do you start with when building a program? Bohannon got his first fax on NSD at 7:01 am from South Palding High's Chandler Burks. Burks is listed as a two-star and as a senior he threw for 2,468 yards with 24 TD versus 5 INT.
247 Sports has your full list of Owls recruits here, with 3-star OLB Dez Billingslea leading the way in terms of potential. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution has a breakdown here and for even more detail on all 29 signees, you can go here.
KSU will begin play in 2015 and they have announced their first home game as they will play Edward Waters College, an NAIA school, on September 15th of 2015. Also on their 2015 schedule are Liberty (went 8-4 in 2013) and Coastal Carolina (made it to the FCS Playoffs where they lost to eventual champion North Dakota State).
Bohannon and KSU have a long, hard road in front of them and hopefully they have learned from watching Georgia State go through a very similar process just a few years ago.