Bison Still Winless After Loss To Rutgers
Rutgers Overpowers Howard University
Piscataway, NJ-September 23--The Scarlet Knights of Rutgers showed why they are one of the top teams in the country as they thrashed Howard University, 56-7 before 35, 558 at Rutgers Stadium.
Rutgers (4-0) started slowly, but quickly parlayed its bruising ground attack, its nationally ranked defense and its overall fine special teams play to bolt out to a 28-0 halftime lead. Quarterback Mike Teel's 45-yard hookup with Clark Harris got the Scarlet Knights on the board on the team's first possession only four minutes into the game.
The Bison (0-3) showed signs of providing competition against their 1-A opponent, moving the ball at times early, but untimely penalties and miscues proved to be costly against the Scarlet Knights, who are off to their first 4-0 start since 1980.
"We came out a little sloppy, but played hard and it began to show in our play and eventually on the scoreboard," said Rutgers Coach Greg Schiano.
Howard's first big miscue came when junior return specialist Leonard Moore misplayed a Joe Radigan punt and gave Rutgers' possession deep in Bison territory. It took the Scarlet Knights four plays to travel seven yards, with Brian Leonard, taking it in from 5 yards out for the first of his two TD runs.
There was a bad exchange on a pitch on Howard's next possession and Rutgers capitalized, this time with Leonard capping off a four-play drive with a 1-yard plunge.
Sophomore running back Ray Rice then got into the act, finishing off a 53-yard drive with a three-yard run to close out the scoring for the half.
"We gave them a short field too many times, especially in the first half," said Howard Coach Ray Petty. "With the type of power offense that they have, they will make you pay and that's what happened."
The Scarlet Knights' defense totally shut down the Howard offense in the second half and did not allow a first down until midway through the fourth quarter. Rice, who finished with 105 yards, scored back-to-back TDs in a three-minute span. Rutgers then turned to its reserves to close out the game.
"Rutgers is an outstanding football team," praised Coach Petty. "Their special teams were super. They are very balanced team and we knew that coming in. They will win a lot of games this season."
The Bison averted a shutout when cornerback Thomas Claiborn returned a Rutgers' fumble 70 yards late in the fourth quarter.
"We're 0-3, but the schedule doesn't get any harder from here," said Claiborn, who scored his first career TD. "Hopefully, we have something to build on."
It was the most points allowed by Howard since a 65-7 loss to 1-A Akron in 2003.
GAME NOTES: Darrell Turner, one of five quarterbacks who played for the Bison, was impressive during mop-up time as he completed five of six passes for 54 yards and just missed getting a TD as the clock expired...linebackers Timothy Lockett and Robert Dowdy continue to play well despite the poor start... Lockett was credited with 14 tackles and Dowdy with 11.