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BASN Game Of The Week: (1) Hampton at (8) Delaware State
By Tony McClean
Updated: September 29, 2006
NEW HAVEN, Ct. — For the Hampton Pirates (4-0, 3-0 MEAC) and the Delaware State Hornets (2-1, 1-0 MEAC), the date of October 2, 2004 has proved to be an beginning and an ending for these two conference opponents.
The Hornets upset the Pirates 28-23 that day in muddy conditions at Alumni Stadium. It not only gave head coach Al Lavan his first win as the Hornets’ boss, but it also snapped Delaware State’s nine-game losing streak to the Pirates.
However, the loss also proved to be the start of a long winning streak for Joe Taylor’s bunch as well. The top-ranked Pirates have won 22 straight regular season games including last week’s 26-7 win against Morgan State in the New York Urban League Classic.
The two schools will meet Saturday night (6 pm) at Dover in a very pivotal MEAC match up. HU has dominated the series winning 10 of the last 11 meetings with the only blemish coming on the aforementioned date.
Idle last week, the Hornets are looking to stay unbeaten in the MEAC while also trying bounce back from a 23-3 road loss to Northwestern State (La.) on September 16. Saturday’s game is the first of five straight MEAC contests for DSU, who meet Bethune-Cookman next Saturday.
In another key contest Saturday, No. 2 North Carolina Central visits Bowie State in the 3rd Annual Prince George’s Classic at Maryland. The Eagles (4-0, 2-0 CIAA) enter this rematch of last year’s CIAA Championship game fresh off last weekend’s huge road win at Southern.
The Bulldogs (2-2, 0-1 CIAA) were upset last weekend by Livingstone and will be without the services of QB Lamar Manigo, who was injured in the 7-3 loss to the Blue Bears. Counting the title game, BSU has lost the last three meetings with N.C. Central.
OTHER RANKED TEAMS
(4) Tuskegee vs. Arkansas-Pine Bluff at St. Louis, Mo.
(13th Annual Gateway Classic)
The Golden Tigers (3-1, 3-1 SIAC) are starting to hit their stride offensively as they get set to battle the struggling Golden Lions (1-3, 1-2 SWAC). TU compiled nearly 400 yards of offense (395) in their 34-20 win against Fort Valley State. Since their 31-20 home loss to Miles College, TU has combined to score 75 points and nearly 700 yards of offense. APBU squandered an early 10-7 lead last week before falling 48-16 to Southern Illinois. The Salukis held the Golden Lions to just 13 total rushing yards.
(5) Lane College at Stillman
The SIAC’s leading offense (scoring 30.8 ppg) and defense (allowing 13.5 ppg) looks to continue its amazing turnaround with a visit to Stillman. The Dragons (5-0, 2-0 SIAC) used special teams to outlast Clark Atlanta last week.Wideout Jacoby Jones, who leads the conference in all-purpose yards, set the pace with an 85-yard return to open the game. He also caught a scoring pass from Sherard Ellis to put the game away. The Tigers (1-3, 0-3 SIAC) are coming off a 21-14 loss to Miles College in the Steel City Classic. TU leads the all-time series 3-1 including last year’s 23-12 win at Tennessee.
(6) Jackson State at Texas Southern
This battle of the Tigers in Houston should prove to be another tight SWAC contest. Each one of TSU’s conference games this season have been decided by a touchdown or less. That includes last week’s 19-14 loss to Alabama A&M at Durley Field. In fact, the last three meetings between these schools have also been decided by a touchdown or less including JSU’s 24-21 win at Jackson. Rick Comegy’s squad rallied from a halftime deficit to outlast Mississippi Valley last week. A 17point third quarter proved to be the margin of victory.
Concordia at (7) Mississippi Valley State
The Delta Devils (2-2, 2-2) are looking to bounce back after falling short against Jackson State last week. MVSU churned out 333 yards of total offense in the defeat, including 253 in the air from Aries Nelson (20-of-43, 2 TDs, interception). After opening the season with an overtime win against Belhaven College, Concordia has lost four straight. Three of their losses have come against SIAC opponents Stillman 32-12), Lane (27-20) and Morehouse (17-13).
Alabama State at (9) Southern
Still reeling from their home loss to N.C. Central, the Jaguars (2-2, 1-1 SWAC) look to bounce back against the resurgent Hornets (2-2, 2-1 SWAC) at Mumford Stadium. SU did generate nearly 400 yards (374) of offense, but a 20-point fourth quarter by the Eagles and five interceptions by J.C. Lewis proved to be too much to overcome. ASU went into Lorman last week to spoil Alcorn State’s home opener. The Hornets were keyed by Jay Peck’s 196 rushing yards (his second straight 100-plus yard performance) and two touchdowns.
(10) Bethune-Cookman at Morgan State
The Wildcats invade Baltimore looking for its 3-0 start in league play since 2004. after opening with a one point loss to Southern, BCC has rolled up three straight wins including last week’s 22-21 nail biter against Norfolk State. Senior wide out Eric Weems is just a touchdown away from becoming the school’s all-time leaders in TDs and career points. The Bears held All-MEAC standout Alonzo Coleman to 68 yards in last week’s loss to Hampton and will look to neutralize BCC’s balanced attack.
OTHER GAMES OF NOTE
Tennessee State vs. Florida A&M
(Atlanta Football Classic)
These long standing rivals enter Saturday’s game coming off much different directions. FAMU rallied from a halftime deficit to defeat Winston-Salem State 25-21 at Tallahassee, while TSU fell to crosstown rival Vanderbilt 38-9 at Nashville. The Rattlers have won the last four meetings including last year’s 12-7 decision. FAMU is also looking to win its third straight win after opening the season with losses to Delaware State and Miami.
Grambling State vs. Prairie View A&M at Dallas
(State Fair Classic)
You have to go way back to 1963 to find the last time the Panthers (2-1) had the better record when they faced the Tigers (0-3). GSU, who’ve won 18 straight against PVAM, are coming off a 42-22 loss to Division I-A Houston while the Panthers’ game against NAIA Langston was suspended late in the third quarter due to weather conditions. Look for Melvin Spears’ squad to try and jump on PVAM early at the Cotton Bowl.