August 27, 2005
Defense Shines in Howard Scrimmage
The Howard University defense dominated most of the action, recording four sacks and returning an interception for a score during the team’s last scrimmage before next week’s home season opener against Winston-Salem State at 1 p.m..
The defense, which returns eight starters from a unit which ranked nationally in 1-AA, had the starting unit intact for the first time in two weeks.
“We like to feel that when we are healthy, our front seven can play with anyone in the conference (Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference),” said Howard Coach Rayford Petty. “We have veteran players who know the system and what we are trying to do. I am very pleased with where we are headed into our first game. We are much further ahead than we were last year this time.”
Early on, the offense appeared to pick up where it left off during last week’s scrimmage when it moved the ball with relative ease against the defense. Sophomore reserve quarterback Darrell Turner connected with sophomore wide receiver Lawrence Hellams (C.H. Flowers HS) from 10 yards out for the game’s first score.
But the defense, led by the inside combination of tackles Jesse Hayes (6-3, 390) and Edwin Piner (6-3, 300), stiffened and twice stopped potential scoring drives in the Red Zone, forcing 20- and 25-yard field goals by sophomore Noam Dror (Montgomery Blair).
The defense made a strong statement when junior defensive end Jarrett Burgess (Calvin Coolidge HS) picked off a Ronald Venters pass and went 50 yards for the score.
The offense played without starters, right tackle Richard Dorceus (slight ankle sprain) and wide receiver Jarahn Williams (sprained shoulder), but both are expected to be ready for next week’s game.
Petty singled out the play of Hellams and Larry Duncan (C.H. Flowers) along with the offensive line.
“We feel good about the talent and depth of our receiving corp,” said Petty. “Hellams is in his first year and he has a lot of potential. And Duncan seems to get better and better.” Hellams had three receptions for 30 yards and a TD while Duncan, who led the team in receiving last year, grabbed three for 40 yards.
Despite the sacks allowed by the offensive front, Petty says he is pleased.
Click Here for 2004 Stats