Game Notes: Howard and WSSU
Bowman Gray Stadium (18,000)
Webcast (audio only), notes and more
Play-by-Play: Ron Harris
The Carey Bailey Show can be seen every Thursday on MASN Sports at 12:30 pm...Coach Bailey will discuss the previous game and preview the upcoming game.
The Bison hold a 4-2 advantage in the series. Howard posted a 24-21 win in overtime last season in Greene Stadium.
1985 WSSU 12, Howard
1986 Howard 36, WSSU 7
1993 Howard 31, WSSU 10
2005 Howard 20, WSSU 6
2006 WSSU 12, Howard 0
2007 Howard 24, WSSU, 21 (OT)
This is a non-conference match-up between the Bison of Howard University and the Rams of Winston-Salem State University. The Bison (1-3) are coming off a 49-21 win over Savannah State in the Miami Football Classic in Miami, FL this past week for their first win of the season. The Rams (0-4) are still looking for their first victory of the season after dropping a 43-17 home decision to South Carolina State on Saturday. This is the last game of a four-game home stand.
Howard Coach Carey Bailey (University of Tennessee, ‘92) is in his second season after serving as an assistant at the University Minnesota. Bailey was the defensive line coach there and under his tutelage, the Gophers led the nation in turnover margin (plus 1.33). Bailey also gained a wealth of experience in stints at Oklahoma State, Middle Tennessee State, Louisiana-Lafayette, Virginia Military Institute and at West Virginia. WSSU is coached by Kermit Blount (WSSU, ‘80) is in his 15th season and has an 87-72-3 record to date. Blount is no stranger to Howard University, having served as offensive coordinator and QB coach here from 1984-88.
SETTING THE SCENE
The Bison are led offensively by red-shirt junior QB FLOYD HAIGLER (112 of 179, 1,251 yards, 9 TDs, 6 interceptions), senior RB KARLOS WHITTAKER (37 carries, 173 yards carries, 2 TDs), senior WR ARLANDUS HOOD (35 receptions, 323 yards), freshman WR WILLIE CARTER (29 receptions, 329 yards, 5 TDs), junior WR BRANDON SHERMAN (18 receptions, 286 yards, 1 TD) and senior RAMON "RAY RAY" MCELRATHBEY (13 receptions, 103 yards, 1 TD; 14 carries, 97 yards).
Defensively, Howard is led by senior MLB ENDOR COOPER (33 solos, 23 assists, 8.0 tackles for losses, 2 forced fumbles), junior S ARANDO JAMISON (11 solos, 14 assists, 4.0 tackles for losses, a forced fumble), sophomore LBs PATRICK JEAN-MARY (9 solos, 10 assists, 3.0 tackles for a loss) and LB COREY BERRY (8 solos, 7 assists, 2.0 tackles for losses, a sack, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery), junior DL JAMES ROBINSON (6 solos, 5 assists, 4.0 tackles for losses), junior S MARTIN CORNIFFE (8 solos, 13 assists, an interception) and junior CB BRANDEN BUFFORD (6 solos, 9 solos, an interception, a fumble recovery).
As a team, Howard is 5th in the nation in passing offense (312.8), 15th in time of possession (33:18) and 16th in total offense (417.0)...Haigler is 3rd in total offense, tied for 3rd in passing and 8th in total passing yards...Arlandus Hood is 4th in receptions per game (8.75)...Willie Carter is 10th in receptions per game (7.5) and 29th in receiving yards per game (82.25)...Brandon Drayton is tied for 19th in punt returns (13.00)...Endor Cooper is 2nd in solos tackles (8.25), tied for 2nd in total tackles and tied for 3rd in tackles for losses...in the MEAC, the Bison lead the conference in total offense, in passing offense, in first downs and in time of possession...they are 2nd in both 3rd down conversions and in pass efficiency...individually, Haigler leads the conference in total offense and in passing offense...Arlandus Hood is 1st in receptions per game and 3rd in receiving yards per game...Willie Carter is 2nd in receptions per game and in receiving yards per game and he is tied for 3rd in scoring...Brandon Sherman is 5th in receptions per game (4.3) and 4th in receiving yards per game (76.0)...Endor Cooper, the Pre-season MEAC Defensive Player of the Year, leads the MEAC in tackles and in tackles for losses and is tied for 1st in fumbles recovered...Arando Jamison is tied for 10th in tackles....the Bison have been outscored, 41-17 in the second quarter...the fourth quarter is their best, where they hold a 43-30 advantage.
The Rams are led offensively by junior QB JARRETT DUNSTON (31 of 67, 351 yards, 1 TD, 5 interceptions), red-shirt freshman QB TIENNE JEFFERSON (20 of 34, 252 yards, 3 interceptions), red-shirt senior WRs BRYANT BAYNE (22 receptions, 203 yards, 1 TD) and BRENT THOMAS (6 receptions, 106 yards), red-shirt freshman RB NICHOLAS COOPER (45 carries, 178 yards, 2 TDs) and red-shirt senior RB RODERICK FLUELLEN (47 carries, 122 yards).
Defensively, WSSU is led by red-shirt junior SS MARCUS COATES (15 solos, 7 assists, 3.5 tackles for losses), red-shirt sophomore DB JARED MITCHELL (18 solos, 10 assists, 2 assists, a tackle for a loss and an interception), freshman DL STEPHEN YOUNG (11 solos, 5 assists, 7 tackles for losses, 5.0 sacks, 2 fumble recoveries), red-shirt junior LBs CHEDRICK MARSHALL (9 solos, 6 assists, 3.0 tackles for a loss and 3.0 sacks) and MARIO DAWSON (7 solos, 3 assists, 3.5 tackles for losses, a sack) and red-shirt sophomore LB SHAWN KEARNEY (16 solos, 3 assists, 1.5 tackles for a loss, 1.5 sacks, an interception).
The Rams have had problems scoring, averaging only 11 points per game...WSSU has also had problems running the ball, averaging under three yards per carry...the Rams' defense, however, has been solid, holding its opponents to under three yards per rush while surrendering only 4 passing TDs...WSSU has had problems in the turnover area where it is a minus 9.
Ulysses "Mario" Alexander missed the first two games of the season, but it did not take the junior from Miami, FL long to make his presence felt. He entered the FAMU game in the second half and caught three passes for 52 yards that included a TD reception where he used his 6-5 height advantage to out-leap his shorter defender. Then on his return home to Miami last week, he caught his second TD in as many games. He adds to an already deep and talented receiving corp.
Willie Carter continues to show that he is no ordinary freshman. The 6-3, 190-pound native of Denmark, SC had another outstanding game in the win over Savannah State with 2 more TDs to add to his team-high of 5. Carter is ranked high among the top receivers in both the MEAC and in the FCS.
The Howard defense is showing that it is going to be a force to be reckoned with, both this season and in the future...the majority of the players are underclassmen, who are developing nicely under defensive coordinator Andre Creamer's system...Corey Berry, Patrick Jean-Mary, Robert Parker, IV, James Carter, James Robinson and Sackie Kerkulah form a solid and improving front while Arando Jamison, Martin Corniffe, Martin Decembert, Branden Bufford, Theodore Graham, IV and Lanny Kelly comprise a talented and aggressive secondary...after surrendering several big plays in the first half, the Bison forced three straight turnovers on SSU's first three possessions while holding the Tigers scoreless in the last 30 minutes.
Coming into the season, Arlandus Hood had shown marked progression each season, catching 4 passes his first season, 12 in his sophomore season and a career-best 23 last season. But no one expected Hood to get off to the start he has this season. The 6-2, 195-pound senior from Long Beach, CA, worked hard in the off-season and it is paying off handsomely. He has already grabbed 35 passes in four games and is averaging almost 10 yards per reception. His 12 catches vs. FAMU this was just one off the school record of 13 held by former Bison standout, Gary "Flea" Harrell in 1993.
The win over Savannah State ended a seven-game Howard losing streak dating back to last year's win over Norfolk State. Haigler has passed for over 300 yards in three straight games. Carter has caught at least one TD pass in each of the four games played. The Bison are a perfect 9-for-9 in their last 9 possessions in the Red Zone.
Each week, Endor Cooper legitimizes his pre-season MEAC Defensive Player of the Year recognition. The 6-3, 245-pound, hard-hitting senior middle linebacker from Woodbridge, VA is not only making a lot of tackles, he is getting a lot of attention from the media covering the games. His relentless play and some of his hits have been the topic of press box conversation.
Making a Statement
When one watches Brandon Drayton returning punts, you sense that it is just a matter of time before he breaks one. The 5-8, 170-pound freshman from Northwestern High School in Miami, FL, made his debut by returning 3 punts for an average of almost 14 yards that included a 28-yarder that he nearly broke for a score. He showed even more progress against FAMU, nearly breaking a couple for big gains. And in the game versus SSU, Drayton's 36-yard return set up a score. Nicknamed "Quick Six" for his ability to go the distance in a short span of time, Drayton is averaging almost 14 yards per return. Stay Tuned.
A Bailey Signature
It did not take Howard Coach Carey Bailey to establish his philosophy that he is a strong proponent of ball control. The Bison led the MEAC in time of possession with over 35 minutes per game. That also ranked in the Top 5 in the country. Despite new personnel and some changes in the offensive scheme, the ball control factor remains a constant as the Bison lead the MEAC with over 35 minutes per game.
Howard is currently second among all HBCUs in players in the National Football League with six: Tracy White (Green Bay Packers), Marques Douglas (Baltimore Ravens), Antoine Bethea (Indianapolis Colts), Ronald Bartell, Jr. (St. Louis Rams), Brandon Torrey (Oakland Raiders) and Geoff Pope (Cincinnati Bengals). The Bison also boasts three former players who are on coaching staffs: Jimmie Johnson (Minnesota Vikings/TEs coach), Pep Hamilton (Chicago Bears/QBs coach) and Roy Anderson (Baltimore Ravens/defensive coach).
Brandon Sherman figures to be especially excited about this game as he will be returning home. The 5-10, 180-pound junior wide receiver, who played his prep ball at Parkland High School, is having his best season. After catching only two passes all of last season, Sherman ranks third on the team in receiving with 18 receptions for an average of almost 16 yards per catch and a TD.
The Bison have an open date before they take on the Bears of Morgan State on October 18 for homecoming at 1 pm while the Rams have a short week. They travel to Tallahassee, FL to take on the Rattlers of Florida A&M on Thursday, October 9 in a nationally televised game on ESPNU at 7:30 pm.