Christian transferred from Georgia to Jacksonville State, brother Uriah transferred from Georgia to UNCC but not before being arrested for trying to cash stipend checks that had already been deposited.
The last paragraph isn't accurate. This is his first year without sanctions. He has at least this year and next.
I'm about 90% sure they've still got some scholarship restrictions this upcoming season as well. But the pressure definitely comes off a little bit, but I think they're still working with less than 85 schollys
UNC is definitely stacked offensively for sure, but recruiting for a 4-2-5 defense for 3 1/2 years and then transitioning to a 4-3 is going to be tough. They also lack experienced scholarship players on defense as well because the majority of the scholarships they've given out these past few years under Fedora have been on offense. I can see UNC getting to a bowl game next year, but I predict that their games are still going to be pretty high scoring and Gene is going to have some headaches on D.
ECU fans, you guys lose a lot of talent, most notable Cardin and Hardy.
Realistically, is your team going to be worse or about the same next year?
It's kind of funny because a lot of people think that we lose more this year than we did last year just because Carden and Hardy are gone - which yes we lose 2 critical historic pieces but this is a team game after all. Ironically, the 14-15 team was actually significantly worse off in terms of all around losses than next year's team will be. Not to mention the upgrades in recruiting that we've got. Coming into 14-15, we had to replace a RB that had two 1000 yard rushing seasons, 3 solid o-lineman, lost our entire starting linebacking core (although we've always used more of a rotation system - the guys that started all left), lost our best d-end, only returned 1 starter in the secondary and lost arguably the best safety to ever play at ECU and defensive leader in Damon Magazu.
All-in-all coming into 14-15 we had to replace 8 starters on defense and 7 starters on offense. It's really way more impressive than people think that this was an 8-5 team competing for a league title, especially considering the manner in which we lost all of our games.
So yes, Shane and Justin Hardy are gone - but this team is in SIGNIFICANTLY better shape than last year. We return 8 starters offensively and are ridiculously deep at RB and WR as anyone that watches ECU knows. We lose our center, but return 4 starters on the line. It does all come down to the QB position, but Kurt Benkert is bigger,faster,stronger than Shane. He has all of the physical intangibles to be great. Impossible to predict how polished he is obviously, but he was a significant recruit for ECU 2 years ago and the coaches are excited to get him out there. Remains to be seen. Defensively we lose really only 3 impact starters: Terry Williams, Brandon Williams, Maurice Falls). I really have full faith that our secondary will be better next year and I believe that our front 7 won't be any worse.
We lose leadership and recruiting in Lincoln Riley, but Ruffin has been planning his departure for a couple of years now. When you've got a guy in his early 30s that's putting together the kind of offenses that Linc has, you'd be mentally unstable to not have a succession plan. We promoted our receivers coach Dave Nichol who has more experience in the offense than Linc did, and replaced his spot at receivers coach with Garrett Riley, Lincoln's brother.
The program that Ruff has put together has been organized, deep, and full of high character players and staff. I fully trust just about every move the guy makes. This team is gonna be really good next year, and competitive (above .500) for at least the next half-decade because of how well this staff has done recruiting and planning for their system.