Akron, OH—The University of Akron used its quick tempo offense and some stingy defense to shut out Howard, 41-0 in a non-conference game at InfoCision Stadium at Summa Field.
The Zips (1-0) wasted little time in establishing their game plan when Kyle Pohl connected with L.T Smith on a 57-yard pass less than two minutes in the first quarter.
The Bison, who were stymied all day by the Akron defense, failed to move the ball on their second possession and took advantage of a short field. Pohl cashed in again, this time on a nine-yard strike to Imani Davis at the 11:24 mark.
The Bison, who had problems on third downs all day, gave the ball back to the Zips less than two minutes later and Pohl made quick work by finding Mykel Traylor Bennett from 43 yards out on the first play as Akron opened a 21-0 lead less than halfway through the first period.
The Howard defense settled in and began to pressure Pohl and force errant throws. The Zips failed the score the rest of the half as Damon Gresham Chisolm, Godspower Offur and Marquese Blanchard hounded Pohl.
But the Bison offense could not capitalize as Akron came up with big stops on third down. Howard’s best opportunity came right near the half when Greg McGhee engineered a drive that put his team in scoring position deep into Akron territory.
Freshman wide receiver Tavious Brown made two key catches in the drive. But the Bison came up just short when a McGhee to Brown pass was ruled incomplete as the clock wound down. The score would have put Howard back in the game at 21-7. Instead it helped Akron regain momentum that they took to the locker room.
The Bison defense stood strong through the third quarter until Akron drove 55 yards on its third possession. Jawon Chisholm capped off the drive with a six-yard burst. Two possessions later, Pohl tossed his fourth TD pass of the game—a career best—to Traylor Bennett from 28 yards, extending the lead to 34-0.
Akron reserve quarterback Tommy Woodson got into the act, throwing his first career TD to Austin Wolf from 40 yards.
The Bison came out of the game with some key injuries on the offense, including starting left tackle John Smith, who went out early with a leg injury.
McGhee rushed the ball 13 times for 29 yards and completed 12 of 26 for 68 yards, a career low.
Junior running back Terrence Tusan was one of the bright spots on offense, rushing for a career-high 60 yards on 18 carries. Brown, a freshman from Miami, FL, grabbed four passes for 39 yards to lead all Bison receivers. He also returned two kickoffs and a punt.
Lost in the defeat was the punting of junior John Fleck, who averaged almost 41 yards per punt.
The Zips rolled up 513 yards of total offense as eight different receivers caught passes.
The Bison have a few extra days to prepare for their next opponent, Rutgers on Saturday, September 6 at 12 noon in New Jersey while the Zips travel to State Park, PA to take on the Nittany Lions of Penn State on Saturday, September 6.
Courtesy: Howard Sports Information