The South Carolina State Bulldogs (1-3 overall, 0-1 MEAC) dropped its third straight contest, after a 70-14 loss to SEC foe Aggies of Texas A&M (2-1 overall, 0-1 SEC).
The Bulldogs couldn't seem to get things going early playing in front of the largest crowd 86,775 at Kyle Field House Saturday. The last time SC State gave up more than 70 points in a game was in 1999 under legendary coach Willie Jeffries, when FAMU knocked off SC State 76-17 in Jacksonville, FL.
Texas A&M jumped out to an early 14-0 lead on a 4-yard run by junior running back Ben Malena (5-8, 195) at the 8:39 mark in the first quarter. Red-shirt freshman Johnny Manziel (6-1, 200) threw a 9-yard toss to senior wide receiver Uzoma Nwachukwu (6-0, 194) to put the Aggies ahead.
Sophomore running back Jalen Simmons (5-10, 205) ended six quarter scoreless drought on a 17-yard touchdown run with 0:35 seconds left in the quarter. Manziel opened up the second quarter with back-to-back touchdown runs of 39 and 20 to give Texas A&M a 28-7 lead with 8:10 left in the first-half.
Manziel's 30-yard pass to senior wide receiver Kenric McNeal (6-1, 184) extended the lead 35-7 at the 5:20 mark. The two time SEC freshman of the week Manziel threw his third touchdown strike of the night and second to Uzoma Nwachukwu on a 37-yard reception to move ahead 42-7. Malena closed out the half on a 50 scamp for a touchdown to give A&M a 49-7 lead at halftime.
The Aggies kept pounding away in the second half on a 96-yard punt return senior Dustin Harris (6-0, 175) to give A&M a commanding 56-7 lead at the 8:18 mark in the third quarter. Senior Christian Michael's (5-11, 220) 5-yard punch to open at the fourth quarter at the 14:40 mark put Texas A&M ahead, 63-7.
SC State found the end zone once again on a 39-yard pass from junior Richard Cue (6-1, 185) to senior wide receiver Lennel Elmore (5-10, 170) with 12:09 left in regulation. Sophomore defensive back Deshazor Everett (6-0, 181) intercepted a Cue's pass and returned it for a 22-yard touchdown to secure a 70-14 victory for the Aggies.
Senior Dustin Harris had career setting night with 246 punt return yards setting a SEC single game record. The Aggie offense racked up an impressive 448 yards total offense. The Bulldogs defense was spearheaded by sophomore linebacker Justin Hughes with eight tackles (5 solo) in the loss.
The Bulldogs return to action on Saturday when they host Norfolk State in a pivotal MEAC clashing at Oliver. C. Dawson Stadium. Kick-off is 2 p.m., with SC State celebrating ROTC/YOUTH Day.