Senior running back Jahwan Edwards celebrates after getting a touchdown during the game against Colgate on Aug. 30 at Scheumann Stadium. DN PHOTO BREANNA DAUGHERTY
FOOTBALL: Ball State running game dominant in victory over Colgate
In his first career start, redshirt sophomore quarterback Ozzie Mann was glad to have some help in the backfield.
"The run game was very impressive today," he said. "It's nice to get the first game under our belt, with a win, but we've got to keep getting better every day."
Mann's pedestrian 203-yard passing performance was not the driving force in a rather dominant offensive showing. It was a pair of running backs that pushed Ball State to a 30-10 win over Colgate to open the season -- and Mann's career as a starter.
The Cardinals' backfield of senior Jahwan Edwards and redshirt junior Horactio Banks combined for 243 yards. Banks carried the ball 13 times for 134 yards and Edwards gained 109 yards and a touchdown on 22 carries.
The duos' efforts marked the 20th time in program history that two running backs ran for at least 100 yards each in the same game. Ball State gained 514 yards of total offense, nearly doubling Colgate's 227 yards.
Ball State head coach Pete Lembo and offensive coordinator Joey Lynch attacked Colgate's defense with the rushing game all afternoon. The Cardinals finished the game having called 53 running plays and 32 pass attempts.
Lembo said it was all part of the game plan.
"We want to be able to hand the ball off to those guys and keep the chains moving," he said.
There were a number of other players who came through in the victory, with the defense as a unit allowing only 200 yards and 10 points on the day, a new low in the Lembo era.
The Cardinals received contributions offensively from every position, with redshirt junior wide receiver KeVonn Mabon catching 11 passes for 110 yards and a touchdown. Wideout Jordan Williams was pegged as Ball State's No. 1 option, but he went down with an ankle injury early in the game.
Ball State will take on Iowa at 3 p.m. Sept. 6 in Iowa City, Iowa. The Big 10 Hawkeyes boast the 19th ranked rush defense in the country.