CONWAY, SC (WMBF) - Coastal Carolina University’s undefeated run in college football is still going, and the Chanticleers have found themselves s one of the nation’s top teams in the AP Poll.
Athletic Director Matt Hogue said he’s having some of the most fun he’s ever had with the football team surging in recognition.
“There’ve been a lot of other great moments during my time," he said. "The College World Series, even going back to when we started college football, but to be in the spotlight we’re in now is substantial.”
Hogue has seen it all from a CCU athletic perspective in his 23-year career with the program, including a national championship with the baseball team in 2016.
He called games for the football team when it first started and has found his way into the athletic director seat for the past six years.
Right now, he’s overseeing the team in its most successful season since joining the FBS.
“This is part of what our concept and vision was when we moved to FBS, knowing we’d be on a greater stage with an opportunity to bring terrific exposure to the university," said Hogue.
As the school grew, the university tried to find a way to put a numeric value to that exposure.
In the past decade, CCU began analyzing earned media with a software called Meltwater.
“We do track the mentions in the media, both broadcast and printed word, in terms of when Coastal Carolina is discussed," said Hogue. "It could be our nickname. It could be a mention in a story. It could be something about an alum.”
Hogue says over the past few weeks, those mentions have reached new heights - as high as nearly 20 million on game day.
At the beginning of the season, the average day ranged from half a million to about seven million. Now, they range up to 15 million or so per day.
Hogue’s just hoping that free advertising helps drive people to look into the school.
“Students that are trying to determine where they want to go to college maybe now have Coastal Carolina on their list," he said.
The Chants will look to continue their winning ways this weekend against conference rival Troy on Saturday. Kickoff for the game is scheduled for noon and can be seen on ESPN2.