VIDEO: Brock Pursley Interview
"They're athletic and they know what they're doing, but the work ethic they bring to the classroom is outstanding," Pursley said. "Their leadership in the classroom, the weight room and the field is invaluable. They're as good a group as I've coached.
Isom was Carson-Newman's leading receiver back in his freshman campaign when he snagged 21 passes for 316 yards and a touchdown. He spent much of last season injured, only appearing in seven games.
Meanwhile, Ward led the Eagles last year with 292 yards and was the SAC's leader in touchdown receptions for the first half of 2014. Ward's best games catching the ball came in succession against Brevard, Catawba and Mars Hill.
He caught three passes for 79 yards and a score against the Tornadoes. He looped in a quartet of receptions, including the game-sealing touchdown, for 59 yards against Catawba before tallying a career high 96 yards on three catches and a touchdown against Mars Hill.
Joining Isom and Ward in the wide receiver corps will be Aaron Seward. Carson-Newman's fifth leading receiver as a sophomore. Seward made seven catches for 115 yards after appearing in all 10 of the Eagles games.
"We always joke, we're wide tackles, not wide receivers. We have to block," Pursley said. "We have to be blockers on the edge. If we're not blocking, then we're doing our offense a disservice. As physical as they are, they can pound corners and get into them."
He averaged 16.4 yards a catch with a long reception of 36 yards. He had 11.5 yards per game. Seward had his best game at the start of the season, grabbing three catches for 27 yards in the opener against Edinboro (9/4). He had the most yards against Catawba (9/27) with 36, albeit on one catch.
"Darvia has been as smooth as can be," Pursley said. "He still has some techniques to learn, but he'll be very solid for us out wide."
Carson-Newman football's position previews resume Friday with C-N's special teams and coach Dino Waites.