2017 DELAWARE STATE UNIVERSITY FOOTBALL — GAME 10
DELAWARE STATE “HORNETS” (1-8; 1-6 MEAC)
MORGAN STATE “BEARS” (1-8; 1-5 MEAC)
SAT., NOV. 11, 2017 (2 p.m.)
ALUMNI STADIUM (7,000) - DOVER, DEL.
LIVE TV: Delaware 28 (New Castle County)
LIVE VIDEO: www.DSUHornets.com
Delaware State wraps up its 2017 home schedule with a MEAC contest against long-time rival Morgan State. The Hornets are trying to bounce back from a 35-21 loss to Savannah State last Saturday, their second straight defeat. Freshman wide receiver Trey Gross had three receptions for 48 yards, including touchdown catches of 5 and 25 yards in the contest, his second two-touchdown game of the season. Gross has caught 21 passes for 339 yards and five touchdowns in the last four games. He leads the Hornets in touchdown receptions and total TDs this season. Delaware State threw for 237 yards last week, raising its total to 1,315 passing yards in the last five games (263.0 avg.). The Hornets averaged 154.3 yards passing in their first four outings (617 total). DSU netted just 17 yards rushing vs. Savannah State, including 58 yards lost on the eight Savannah State sacks. Three of the Hornets’ opening day offensive line starters- Cade Pedro (so.), Kaiden Crawford (r-fr.) and Kaydence Jackson (fr.)- are out due to injuries. Delaware State starting quarterback Keenan Black completed 12-of-27 passes for 216 yards and a career-high three touchdowns, however, he threw four interceptions and was sacked six times last week. For the season, Black has connected on 59-of-130 passes (45.4%) for 837 yards with nine touchdowns and nine interceptions. Jack McDaniels, DSU’s starting quarterback in the first six games, has completed 89-of-161 passes (55.3%) for 1060 yards. He has thrown three touchdowns and six interceptions. Nyfease West led the Hornets with a career-high 72 yards rushing on 14 carries last week to climb to the team with 251 yards this season. Defensively, DSU freshman linebacker Devin Adams had a game-and-career-high 14 tackles (10 solo), including 3.5 behind the line-of-scrimmage and two forced fumbles in the Savannah State contest. Freshman defensive back Devin Smith had 11 tackles, seven unassisted, for the Hornets last week. Linebacker Brian Cavicante is Delaware State’s top tackler with 64 this season. He also has a team-high nine tackles-for-loss and is tied for second on the squad with two sacks. Safety Jahad Niebauer is second on the Hornets with 62 tackles, including a team-best 36 solo stops. Delaware State features two of the MEAC’s top kickers. Hornet punter Fidel Romo-Martinez is currently No. 1 in the MEAC and fifth among all FCS punters with a 44.4 yard average, while placekicker Wisdom Nzidee is 7-for-8 on field goal attempts and perfect on 12 extra-point kicks this season.
The Bears bring a three-game losing streak into the contest. Morgan State is coming off a 41-28 loss at Bethune-Cookman last week. MSU won the total yardage battle 504-471, highlighted by a 351-88 edge in rushing yards, but allowed five touchdown passes in the game. Morgan State running back Eric Harrell rushed for a game-high 218 yards, including touchdown runs of 10 and 87 yards last week. For the season, Harrell has rushed for 593 yards on 102 carries to rank fifth in the MEAC at 65.9 yards per game. He’s also rushed for five touchdowns this season. As a team, Morgan State is third in the league is rushing at 149.6 yards per game. The Bears are fourth in the conference in total offense with a 346.7 yard per-game average. Morgan State quarterback Elijah Staley has completed 125-of-266 passes for 1463 yards and four touchdowns. Staley is seventh in the MEAC in passing at 162.6 yards per game, but has thrown a league-high 11 interceptions. Morgan State is fifth in the MEAC in total defense, allowing 363.8 yards per game. Linebacker Rico Washington has a league-high 16.5 tackles for loss and is seventh in the conference with 5.5 sacks. Defensive end Malachi Washington is No. 2 in the MEAC with 15 tackles for loss and tied for fourth with six sacks. The Series This is the 61st meeting between the Hornets and Bears. It is Delaware State‘s second oldest rivalry (73 games vs. Howard). Morgan State has won the last four meetings to open up a 36-24 series lead. The Bears won last year’s contest 20-17 in Baltimore, Md. The Hornets were ahead 10-6 before a 14-0 run gave Morgan State a 20-10 lead. Delaware State scored a touchdown in the final minute to pull to within three, but failed to recover an onsides kick to seal the win for Morgan State. The last time the teams met at Delaware State, the Bears rolled to a 26-t6 win during the 2015 season.