The University of Michigan's Russell Davis, from Woodbridge High School, scored a record six touchdowns and the University of Maryland's Steve Atkins, out of Spotsylvania High, banged in for two today as the Virginia running backs galloped the East to a 56-17 victory in the annual Shrine East-West game.
The East was coached by the University of Maryland's Jerry Claiborne.
Davis, a 6-foot-2, 220-pound fullback, rushed for 199 yards in 27 carries and was the standout offensive player in a game featuring many of 1978's best senior college players.
The East was down, 17-7, at the half but scored seven times in the second half, five of the touchdowns coming after turnovers.
Davis' six touchdowns and 199 yards were the most ever by one player in the Shrine game, the 56 points set a record and Dave Jacobs of Syracuse added a fourth mark with eight extra points. Davis gained 168 yards in the second half.
Davis' rushing total was 52 yards over the previous record set by Purdue's Otis Armstrong in 1972, and he scored twice as many touchdowns as the old recordholders, Hank Schaldah California in 1933 and Gerald Nesbitt of Arkansas in 1958.
"In the first half the middle was jammed up and we were going nowhere," Davis said. "But in the second half we utilized the option play to string out the defense and that opened up the middle."
Three Penn State linemen, Charles Correal, Eric Cunningham and Keith Dorney, did much of the opening up.
"Those Penn State boys block, I want to tell you," said Davis.
Davis, the fifth-leading rusher in his university's history, had never scored so many touchdowns, run for so many yards or carried the ball so many times at Michigan, where his primary duty was to block.
"That was my job," Davis said, "so I never really had big yardage."
Claiborne, who tried to recruit Davis for Maryland, praised Davis' running.
The five East turnover touchdowns were set up on three pass interceptions and two fumble recoveries. Don Bessillieu of Georgia Tech had an interception and a fumble recovery to lead the East defense, which shut down the West in the second half.
With Steve Dils of Stanford and Mike Moroski of California-Davis completing 14 passes for 156 yards, the West dominated the first half and appeared to be on its way to its fourth straight victory.