Coaches dish on all 10 Sun Belt teams
It's not easy getting college football coaches to honestly comment on another coach, player or team. Most coaches don't want to give opposing teams bulletin board material, which is why there is a lot of coach speak or overused cliches used during the year.
In order to get an accurate assessment of teams heading into 2019, Athlon asked coaches in the Sun Belt to talk anonymously about their opponents.
Note: These scouting reports come directly from coaching staffs and do not necessarily reflect the views of Athlon's editorial staff.
Sun Belt Coaches Talk Anonymously About Conference Foes for 2019
"They have really good talent and team speed."
"As a roster, they're probably the most talented in the league year in and year out."
"You know their identity on both sides of the ball as soon as you watch their tape."
"They're in the same position as Troy - a great football team guarding against changing the wrong things with a new staff."
"Eli's (Drinkwitz) got the blueprint. You tend to overthink it in Year 1 but they could easily keep on rolling."
"Their staff has done a great job evaluating offensive skill guys, and it's a reason they're a consistent program."
"I always consider them a contender."
"They're consistent and they know the conference."
"They need to address their defense, and that starts in recruiting."
"They just don't have the talent they need to be competitive in the league."
"They've been unique on both sides of the ball, I think they're going to continue to base their offense on helping their defense."
"They really lack for consistency in their execution, but they're a difficult team to prepare for because they'll give you looks you don’t normally see."
"They've got such a good thing going with that stadium and the city of Atlanta."
"Coaches in the industry think they should be better."
"They're starting over again. There's so much turnover with a new play-caller on offense and defensively I think they lost every coach except their coordinator."
"They took a huge step forward last season and look like those old Paul Johnson teams; mean and hard. Plus, they are athletic."
"Tradition is the first word that comes to mind."
"They're back to doing things how they do them and that's what makes them a great program. They have great fan support, too."
"They're athletic enough that the unique offense is a problem on a regular week schedule."
"They do more than you think with their play calls."
"I think it helps everyone when you have a Sun Belt team beating P5s for kids."
"(Billy) Napier knows how to maximize resources available."
"An improving team all season that brings back most of their guys."
"They're replacing the QB, but they have a backup (Levi Lewis) that has a lot of experience."
"They're a really talented team, they're working recruiting in that state really well."
"You have consistent teams and struggling programs but this is probably the one program you could say is really on the rise right now in this league."
"A good-looking team across the field from you. They're big. They’re long and athletic."
"They have an extremely talented team in my opinion."
"I thought they did a nice job adapting to personnel as the season went and they started to feel out what they wanted to be."
"They've got some defensive front guys that are difficult to block."
"The QB position looked really raw. If they can get more there they could make a run this year."
"I thought they had some good defensive personnel last season."
"One thing that jumped out is their team speed. The roster isn't as bad as you think."
"Right now, it's a wait and see."
"They had strong special teams last year."
"The young quarterback from San Antonio [Tyler Vitt] is good."
"Neal (Brown) left them in good shape."
"Their personnel is good, and they know how to recruit their area better than most programs in the league."
"They've sustained consistency in this league, but they did it with good defense and running the ball more than I think people would associate with Troy."
"Now it's all about transition, how Chip (Lindsey) figures out guiding them and making it his culture."
"We expect new looks on offense but there's nothing broke there at all."
"That job is harder than people know. It's a good area (for recruiting), but they get little support."
"They do a good job with what they have."
"You notice right away how this team plays really hard. There's a lot of respect for Coach (Matt) Viator and his approach in our league."
"They created a tough, gritty team that wants to get physical with you. That's a way to help them because they're lacking in support compared to a lot of the programs in this league."
(Top photo courtesy of astateredwolves.com)