MSU (0-1) at Robert Morris (0-1)
Saturday, Sept. 7, 2013 – Noon ET
Joe Walton Stadium
Moon Township, Pa.
The Bears (0-1) will once again march north this time to face Robert Morris on Saturday (Sept. 7) at Joe Walton Stadium. The Colonials are led by the only head coach in the history of the program in Joe Walton, who will be at the helm for the final time in 2013. Robert Morris (0-1) will enter its home-opener coming off of a 38-6 loss on the road to No. 19 Eastern Kentucky. Morgan State looks to bounce back from a 28-12 loss against Army in West Point, N.Y. Donald Hill-Eley, ranked third among winning coaches at MSU, enters his 12th year as head coach of the Bears. Game time at Joe Walton Stadium is scheduled for noon.
ABOUT THE COLONIALS
• The Colonials (0-1) on the season after a 38-6 loss to non-conference opponent Eastern Kentucky last Thursday night in Richmond, Ky.
• True freshman Alex Caratelli had one of the highlights for the Colonials as the rookie caught a touchdown pass in his collegiate debut.
• Redshirt senior linebacker Mike Cook tallied a game-high 10 tackles. Senior Samuel Collins contributed a career-best eight tackles, including a tackle for loss. Senior Matthew Fox added his first-ever forced fumble with a vicious hit on kickoff coverage.
• MSU will enter the 2013 season with a number of veterans … the Bears’ roster includes 12 seniors and 15 juniors.
• The Bears return its top receiver from last season in Andrew King … King, a Columbia (Md.) product, had 25 catches for 334 yards (13.4) and scored a pair of touchdowns as a true sophomore.
• The Bears backfield lost All-MEAC running back Travis “Juice” Davidson to graduation, however the backfield is loaded with talented young players like Lamont Brown III, Herb Walker, Tracy Martin and Orlando Johnson who will compete for the starting RB spot.
• The returning quarterback duo of Seth Higgins and Robert Council combined for 1,560 passing yards (140-of-301) and five touchdowns in 2012.
• Joe Rankin returns as a shutdown cornerback for the Bears and finished with 46 tackles and lead the MEAC with five picks in 2012.
• NT Demarco Bisbee leads a defensive line unit that returns 10 lettermen from last season … Bisbee posted 41 tackles, 7.5 tackles for loss and
3.5 sacks in 2012.
• LB Christopher Robinson was among the league leaders with 13.5 tackles for loss (No. 4), to go along with 40 tackles and 8.5 sacks.
• Chris Flowers helped lead the Bears to a No. 1 ranking in the MEAC in kickoff return avearge (23.0 avg) and his 27.8 kick return average ranked No. 8 in the FCS last season.
• The Bears added four new coaches to the 2013 staff … the new coaches are: Jerry Holmes (DC), Greg Gregory (OC), LeAndre Creamer (DB) and Marcus Gladden (OL).
• Morgan State recorded 301 yards of total offense on 62 plays and committed zero turnovers at Army.
• The Bears gained 185 rushing yards on 52 carries … it marked the most rushing attempts by the Bears since 2008 when they finished with 51 carries versus Hampton.
• Redshirt-freshman RB Lamont Brown III started in his first career game and finished with 75 yards on 19 carries against Army.
• RB Herb Walker gained 56 yards on 10 carries, including an 18-yard run in the 4th quarter. Freshman RB Orlando Johnson added 11 yards on three carries.
• True freshman QB Ricky Fisk had two runs during his first action in the Blue & Orange.
• Lawrence Forbes made a strong debut for the Bears at Army. The redshirt-freshman averaged 44 yards on four punts, including a 63-yard blast. All four of his punts landed inside of the 20 yardline.
• True freshman LB Isaiah Lewis posted five tackles
• Redshirt-sophomore LT Daniel Owuegbu had a solid showing in his first career start with the Bears.
• Junior LB Cody Acker recorded the first double-digit tackle total (10) and also recorded the Bears’ first sack of the season.
• Senior WR Chris Flowers was on the receiving end of a 22-yard touchdown pass from junior Robert Council.
• The QB duo of Seth Higgins and Robert Council combined for 116 passing yards. Higgins started the game and completed 2-of-3 passes for 27 yards; while Council threw for 89 yards (4-of-7) and scored the Bears’ first TD of the season and tossed a TD pass to Chris Flowers.
11 FIRST-TIME STARTERS … Eleven Bears made their first starts Saturday at Army. On offense, LT Daniel Onwuegbu, LG Dominique Woods, FB Dionte Holland, RBLamont Brown III and SE Thomas Martin all experienced their first start. And on defense four Bears were first-time starters: defensive linemen Andrew Mitchell, Heleaince Gates, LBs Ta’Quon Jackson and Bill Hill. On special teams, punter Lawrence Forbes and placekicker Chris Moller.
BEARS OPEN 115th SEASON OF FOOTBALL SINCE 1898 … Morgan State enters its 115th season of football, and the 12th under head coach Donald Hill-Eley.
NON-CONFERENCE GRADE … The Bears are 14-21 (.400) overall in non-conference play under Donald Hill-Eley. The Bears will open the 2013 campaign with four consecutive road games against non-conference opponents, starting with Army (8/30), followed by trips to Robert Morris (9/7), Liberty (9/14) and Western Kentucky (9/21).
CAMPAIGNING FOR SUCCESS … The Bears enter 2013 looking to post their fourth winning season, all under Donald Hill-Eley, the most in over 30 years since Earl C. Banks posted 11 straight winning season from 1961-1971.
TV APPEARANCES … Morgan State will be making a pair of national television appearances this fall. CBS Sports Network is scheduled to broadcast the Bears’ Aug. 30th matchup at Army (Michie Stadium), followed by MSU’s road contest against South Carolina State on Nov. 14th that will be aired by ESPNU.
BEARS NAME TEAM CAPTAINS … The MSU Bears wrapped up the preseason by naming the team captains for the 2013 season. The leadership group is comprised of two seniors, OL Karim Barton (Los Angeles, Calif.) and CB Joe Rankin (Germantown, Md.); along with two juniors, LB Christopher Robinson (Baltimore, Md.) and WRAndrew King (Columbia, Md.). The captains were voted on by the team.
PENNSYLVANIA TIES … The Bears have two student-athletes on the roster who are from the City of Brotherly Love. MSU’s starting defensive end Heleaince Gates is from Philadelphia and he attended Delaware Valley Charter High School; and Micale Smith-Murray is a defensive lineman who transferred to Morgan State from Robert Morris.
FLAGWORK … During the season-opener at Army, Morgan State shook off a penalty riddled first half. The Bears were penalized eight times for due to a number of false starts and illegal procedure calls. But the jitters appeared to go away – the Bears were only flagged once in the second half.