Taliaferro honored again by Big South

Courtesy: Coastal Carolina Athletics

CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Coastal Carolina football player Lorenzo Taliaferro (Virginia Beach, Va.) and Winthrop women's basketball player Dequesha McClanahan (Oak Ridge, Tenn.) have been voted the Big South Conference Male and Female Student-Athletes of the Year for the 2013-14 season by the League's Athletics Directors, Senior Woman Administrators and Sports Information Directors, it was announced today by the Conference office.

Taliaferro is the first Chanticleer football player to win the award. He earned 80 points and eight first-place votes in capturing the Howard Bagwell Male Student-Athlete of the Year award.  Taliaferro finished ahead of Coastal Carolina soccer All-American Pedro Rebeiro, who tallied 68 points in the voting.  Liberty baseball All-American Ryan Seiz was third in the voting with 52 points, followed by High Point basketball player John Brown (45 points).  Radford track All-American Vincent Wyatt received 32 points to round out the top five male vote-getters.

Taliaferro was a finalist for the Walter Payton Award as the top player in the FCS, a consensus All-American and the Big South's Offensive Player of the Year.  Taliaferro led the Chants to a 12-3 record and a quarterfinal appearance in the NCAA Division I Football Championship, the best football playoff finish by any Big South member.  He additionally shattered 12 CCU single-season records and broke seven Big South single-season records in 2013, including points scored -- eclipsing the previous CCU mark by 88 points and the League mark by 36.  Taliaferro ranked second in the nation in scoring (11.6 ppg) and finished the regular-season with Big South records of 27 total touchdowns and 25 rushing touchdowns.  He scored a touchdown in 14 of 15 games and posted nine multi-TD efforts.

Taliaferro led the Big South with a school-record 1,487 rushing yards, which ranked third in FCS, and 1,596 all-purpose yards.  He tied a League record by being a five-time Big South Offensive Player of the Week honoree and rushed for more than 100 yards a League-best nine times, facing six teams that finished among the FCS top 40 in rushing defense.  In his five Big South appearances, Taliaferro was tops in the Conference with 636 rushing yards (127.2 per game) and 10 scores to help the Chanticleers claim their second-straight Big South championship. Taliaferro was selected to play in the Senior Bowl and was later drafted in the fourth round by the Baltimore Ravens.

This marks the seventh time a Chanticleer has been voted Big South male Athlete of the Year since the 1999-2000 season, when the award was first presented. Previous Chanticleer honorees include Ashton Bennett ( soccer), Mike Costanzo (baseball), two-time winner Joseph Ngwenya (soccer) and Justin Owens (baseball).