Tailback Greg Banes rushed for 44 yards and a pair of touchdowns yesterday to highlight Howard's final preseason intrasquad scrimmage.
The Bison first-team offense went against the second-team defense and vice versa, as the squads competed under a largely game-condition format.
Banes, a sophomore from Atlanta, scored on runs of seven and two yards to cap drives engineered by quarterback Ronald Wilson. Banes, a shifty, 176-pounder, gave a sparse Howard Stadium crowd-- which somehow found the stadium gate wide open at the allegedly "closed" scrimmage-- one of the more exciting runs from scrimmage of the morning. He broke outside left tackle and danced 22 yards downfield to set up his eventual second touchdown run.
Bison Coach Floyd Keith expressed pleasure with both the offense and defense. The first defensive unit, sparked by the linebacking of cocaptain Scott Facyson and Marcus Thomas, shut down the second-team offense.
Meanwhile, the first-team offense moved the ball well, scoring four touchdowns under three quarterbacks. The interior blockers-- guards John Jenkins and Keith Hill, with either Tim Robinson or junior college transfer Clyde Davis handling center duties-- opened gaping holes through the heart of the second-team defense.
The happy beneficiaries of the offensive line's muscle included fullback Ray Cryer (four carries for 61 yards, including a 37-yard touchdown), Banes (9-44 and freshman quarterback Darryl Hibbett (4-20).
Hibbett came in near the end of the scrimmage to guide the offense on an 80-yard march that ended with Cryer's 37-yard burst up the middle. Hibbett threw well on the move in the veer-option offense, completing two of three passes in traffic. The freshman also had a crowd-pleasing 22-yard run called back because of a penalty.
Hibbett's surprising play could complicate the starting-quarterback situation. Keith said he will make a decision Monday between Wilson and Brian Thomas, neither of whom was as effective passing or running as Hibbett yesterday.
However, Wilson and Thomas each started four games last season. The other Bison quarterback, Raymond Gray, started one game in 1978. Gray handed off to second-string tailback Buford Outlaw yesterday for a 12-yard scoring dash off tackle.
The other Bison touchdown was a 55-yard punt return by senior split end Greg Scott to open the scoring.
One area of concern for Keith was 11 penalties, several of which nullified substantial gains. Keith also cited receivers for dropping several passes.
The first-team offense totaled 216 yards on 30 rushes and added 70 yards on pass receptions. Cryer caught two for 27 yards from his fullback position. Junior tight end and cocaptain Fitz Fowler added a catch for 15 yards.