Florida Atlantic Owls
2008 CFN Florida
2008 FAU Offense
2008 FAU Defense
2008 FAU Depth
2007 CFN FAU Preview
2006 CFN FAU
Any and all success Florida Atlantic has had, and will continue to
enjoy, comes from head coach Howard Schnellenberger. There are other
head coaches who might be considered the face of their programs,
like Joe Paterno is with Penn State, but without Schnellenberger,
there wouldn't be an FAU football team. He's the one who built it
from the ground up, and he's the one with the vision to create
something out of absolutely nothing.
Schnellenberger also had to be the one who sold the idea of football
to the place, and now he has the makings of a Sun Belt juggernaut on
his hands. Last year's conference title and New Orleans Bowl win
over Memphis might be just the start.
Head coach: Howard Schnellenberger
8th year: 33-37
24th year overall: 141-119-3
Off. 27, Def. 23, ST 5
Lettermen Lost: 12
Best Owl Players
1. QB Rusty Smith, Jr.
2. LB Frantz Joseph, Sr.
3. CB Corey Small, Sr.
4. CB Tavious Polo, Soph.
5. WR Cortez Gent, Jr.
6. TE Jason Harmon, Sr.
7. DT Jervonte Jackson, Sr.
8. RB Charles Pierre, Sr.
9. RB/KR DiIvory Edgecomb, Sr.
10. FB William Rose, Jr.
2008 Record: 0-0
Aug. 30 at Texas
Sept. 6 UAB
Sept. 13 at Michigan State
Sept. 20 at Minnesota
Sept. 30 at Middle Tennessee
Oct. 7 Troy
Oct. 18 at Western Kentucky
Oct. 25 at UL Monroe
Nov. 8 North Texas
Nov. 15 UL Lafayette
Nov. 22 at Arkansas State
Nov. 29 FIU
Sept. 8 at
Oklahoma St L 42-6
Minnesota W 42-39
Sept. 22 at
No Texas W 30-20
Sept. 29 at
Kentucky L 45-17
South Florida L 35-23
UL Laf. W 39-32 OT
L 33-30 3OT
Florida L 59-20
Troy W 38-32
New Orleans Bowl
Dec. 21 Memphis W 44-27
lettermen and 20 starters returning, there's no reason to expect
anything less than another big season and yet another stepping
stone into the world of the big-time powerhouses. While
Schnellenberger might not be able to do for FAU what he did for
Miami back in the 1980s, he has something special growing.
To start, this team plays like it believes it can win. It might
have gotten flattened by Oklahoma State, but it bombed on
Minnesota, hung tough with South Florida, and was better against
Florida than the 59-20 final score would indicate. But while the
program needs big wins to get more national recognition, getting
another Sun Belt title would suffice for now.
Led by QB Rusty Smith, the league's top passing game should
explode once again. Just about everyone is back in all the key
positions, there's more beef on the line than in the past, and
there should be more of a running game with veterans Charles
PIerre, DiIvory Edgecomb, and William Rose back.
The defense wasn't always a rock, but it was good enough. With
eight starters returning, led by MLB Frantz Joseph and the
fantastic corner tandem of Corey Small and Tavious Polo, it'll
Remembering that the program really didn't kick in until 2001,
Schnellenberger's creation has been nothing short of a college
football miracle. Now it's time to press on. This isn't a
building program anymore, it's a player. It's going to act like
What to watch for on offense: More from the running game. There
was supposed to be more production from the backfield last year,
and while there was, the offense became too reliant on Smith.
That's not necessarily a bad thing considering the air show
should be the Sun Belt's more efficient, but with Pierre,
Edgecomb and Rose, three solid veterans, the running game will
get more attention early on.
What to watch for on defense: Phenomenal corner play. FAU might
not have corners on the level of last year's Troy tandem of
Leodis McKelvin, now with Buffalo, and Elbert Mack, now with
Tampa Bay, but the NFL scouts are going to take a hard look at
Corey Small this season while hoping Tavious Polo beefs up a
little bit over the next two seasons. Add Erick McIntosh to the
mix, after he missed all of last year with academic issues, and
the Owls are loaded at corner.
The team will be far better if … there's more pressure in
the backfield and there's some semblance of a punting game. The
Owls didn't just have the worst all-around punting game in the
Sun Belt, they were 112th in the nation in net punting and 117th
in punt returns. The defense was disruptive and it did a decent
job, but it didn't generate any pass rush finishing with a mere
16 sacks and 68 tackles for loss.
aren't taking it easy early on with four road games before October 1st,
with only a home game against UAB to break things up. Starting out at
Texas won't be fun, while trips to Michigan State and Minnesota, who
won't take the game lightly after last year's 42-39 loss in Boca Raton,
will be tough. A date at Middle Tennessee followed up by a showdown
against Troy will likely make-or-break the Sun Belt season by October
8th. In all, there are only two home games before November 8th, but on
the plus side, three of the final four are at home.
Best Offensive Player:
Rusty Smith. He was supposed to develop into a special passer, and he
quickly did becoming the Sun Belt Player of the Year with 3,688 passing
yards with 32 touchdown and nine interceptions. He doesn't throw picks,
but he could stand to be more accurate after completing just 59% of his
throws. Forget about running the ball, but he's decent around the goal
Best Defensive Player:
Frantz Joseph. Is there anything he didn't do? Joseph might just be 6-1
and 229 pounds, but he was tough in the middle making 131 tackles with
three sacks, 12.5 tackles for loss, two interceptions and three
recovered fumbles. He's the heart-and-soul of the veteran D.
Key player to a
Senior DE Robert St. Clair. The one thing keeping FAU from being truly
special is a steady pass rush. St. Clair did what he could last season
making four sacks and seven tackles for loss, and now he has to double
those numbers to free up everyone else on the line. The Owls don't take
a ton of big chances, but they'll have to if St. Clair, and Jermaine
Council on the other side, can't get to the quarterback.
The season will be a
... FAU wins the Sun Belt title.
With all the talent returning and after
the success of last year, anything less than another championship would
make the season a total and complete failure.
Oct. 7 vs. Troy. The Owls can survive a road loss and still be in the
title hunt, but a home defeat to the Trojans would be devastating. The
rest of the Sun Belt slate isn't bad, so if FAU can get past Middle
Tennessee and Troy and be 2-0, it should be on to New Orleans.
2007 Fun Stats:
- Fumbles: Opponents 23 (lost 14) – FAU 17 (lost 4)
- Average yards per catch: FAU 13 – Opponents 9.7
- Third quarter scoring: Opponents 102 – FAU 58