BALTIMORE, NOV. 14 -- Howard continued what has seemed like a season-long tune-up for next week's Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference championship showdown with Delaware State by devastating woeful Morgan State, 62-0, today at Hughes Stadium.
The victory was the 15th in 16 games for the Bison, who are 8-1 overall, 4-0 in the MEAC and ranked 20th in Division I-AA. It was Howard's most-lopsided shutout victory since a 70-0 win over North Carolina College in 1925.
Tailback Harvey Reed rushed for two touchdowns and 194 yards, leaving him tied with Boston University's Paul Lewis as the seventh all-time leading rusher in I-AA history with 3,995 yards.
Morgan State, which was held to 65 net yards and did not get inside Howard's 34 until the final 90 seconds, finished the season 1-9, 0-5 in the conference. In the past four years the Golden Bears have lost 38 times. Their only two victories in that time have been over the University of the District of Columbia, which has struggled on the Division II level.
Over the past three weeks, Howard has beaten three opponents by a combined 149-10.
"We have said, 'One game at a time,' all season," said Howard Coach Willie Jeffries. "Now the time is here. Next week is the big one. It is kind of tough to go through a season undefeated with all the variables you have, but I'm happy we did have some tough games along the way and are 8-1 going into the game against Delaware State."
Jeffries said Howard has tried few new wrinkles over the past three weeks, but hoped today's victory reinforced two factors he sought to improve as the season progressed toward next week's meeting in Dover against the No. 7 Hornets.
"I like the way our defense has been playing," said Jeffries. "And Derrick Faison made some great catches today. He'll be a factor next week because Delaware State puts so much emphasis on stopping the option."
For the second straight season, Faison, a 6-foot-4 redshirt sophomore from Lake City, S.C., had his best game against Morgan State.
Last season, Faison caught four touchdown passes in a 60-6 win over the Golden Bears. Today, he made a leaping one-handed catch for a 14-yard touchdown pass from Lee DeBose to complete Howard's opening drive.
Faison caught four passes for 74 yards, including another 14-yard touchdown reception from John Javis that gave Howard a 49-0 lead.
Faison, who has had problems with dropped passes, has caught 11 passes for five touchdowns this season. He has 29 career catches for 14 touchdowns, which ties Tracy Singleton's school record for most career touchdown receptions.
"I think most of my problems have been concentration," said Faison.
"This game was good for my confidence, but we're all peaking at the right time. We feel we are at the top of our game. We have been trying to take it one game at a time, but we have really been focusing on next week's game the entire season."
Morgan State produced a respectable effort for about a half. The Golden Bears trailed only 14-0 until Howard went 84 yards and scored on an eight-yard touchdown reception by Charles Lambeck with 1:19 left in the half.
They also had done a creditable job controlling Reed, but the nation's leading rusher with a 146 yards per game average before today, went 64 yards on the first play from scrimmage to start the Bison on a 41-point second half.
"They were really concentrating on stopping Harvey," said DeBose of Morgan State's tactic of lining up heavily toward the outside and leaving the middle unprotected.
"I was watching their bench, and every time they stopped him, they were all whooping and hollering like that was what they wanted to accomplish. But all it did was leave the middle open to run some traps and let us throw the ball."
Afterward, safety Julian Perkins, who led the MEAC in tackles, and Reggie Burgess, the MEAC's leading receiver who was held to two catches for 23 yards today, both said Delaware State -- a 30-7 winner over Morgan -- would beat Howard.
The Bison, however, saw today as a hoped-for springboard.
"Our loss to Towson State showed we just can't go out there and win without being fired up," said offensive tackle Roy Pierson. "It was good for us, and this coming week, we are ready to bring everything to a new level of intensity." Howard 14 7 21 20 62 Morgan State 0 0 0 0 0
H -- Faison 14 pass from DeBose (Harvell kick)
H -- Epps 2 run (Harvell kick)
H -- Lambeck 8 pass from DeBose (Harvell kick)
H -- Reed 64 run (Harvell kick)
H -- Reed 6 run (Harvell kick)
H -- Javis 14 run (Harvell kick)
H -- Faison 14 pass from Javis (Harvell kick)
H -- Mack 14 run (kick failed)
H -- Green 45 run (Harvell kick)
A -- 3,100
Howard Morgan St. First downs 25 8 Rushes-yards 53-381 26-( 7) Passing yards 180 72 Return yards 84 172 Passing 9-23-0 10-25-2 Punts-average 2-31 7-31 Fumbles-lost 3-3 2-1 Penalties-yards 12-131 4-31 I
RUSHING -- Howard: Reed 22-194, Green 3-49, Javis 4-45, Mack 7-43, Epps 8-18, T. Johnson 3-13, Brown 1-13,
PASSING -- Howard: DeBose 7-19-0, 155 yards; Javis 2-3-0, 25; Harvell 0-1-0, 0. Morgan State: Wilson 10-22-
RECEIVING -- Howard: Faison 4-74, Epps 1-46, J. Johnson 2-39, Kyles 1-13, Lambeck 1-8. Morgan State: Burges