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September 22, 2013Follow @SeanWKURivals
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It didn't take long for the staleness of last week to wear off, one play into Saturday's home opener against Morgan State senior running back Antonio Andrews broke off a 65-yard touchdown run that would mark the beginning of an historic night for the senior from Fort Campbell, Kentucky.
Andrews now holds the Western Kentucky record for most rushing touchdowns in one game - he finished with five - to go along with his 17 carry, 213 yard effort.
He not only paved his way into the record books, but Andrews' first carry of the night popped the cork on a bottle of offensive champagne that flowed all over Fiex Field.
The final tally: 588 yards of total offense, 377 of those rushing, and 211 through the air.
The final score: Western Kentucky 58, Morgan State 17.
It was a result that most expected, however, the most unexpected aspect of the evening was at quarterback for WKU. Freshman Todd Porter got the start, but all four quarterbacks on the roster logged in playing time.
It's something head coach Bobby Petrino and his staff expected to happen, "it almost played out exactly like we planned it, I was happy about that. We just wished we would have got the ball back a little bit earlier in the second quarter so Demarcus (Smith) would've gotten some more playing time in that second quarter."
So, how'd the quarterbacks do?
Stats: 5-of-10 for 76 yards and 1 interception.
Highlights - a nice flick-of-the-wrist while on the run that connected with Willie McNeal down the field for a 56-yard gain.
Stats: 3-of-4 for 47 yards - 3 rushes for 28 yards and 1 touchdown.
Highlights - a nice 11-yard touchdown run on a bootleg play, ran the offense smoothly, very decisive on his read-option plays.
Stats: 7-of-7 for 59 yards.
Highlights - showed great accuracy, connected on all of his throws, seemed very settled.
Stats: 2-of-3 for 33 yards and 1 interception - 4 rushes for 31 yards.
Highlights - brings a more dynamic, powerful element when he decides to run.
While every quarterback got a chance to audition for the starting role for next week's game versus Navy, Petrino says the film will be reviewed and practice will be evaluated this upcoming week before the role of signal caller is named.
"We'll really study the film and evaluate where we're at, see what we need to do to give us an opportunity to win this next game, and then go out and see how we practice. You're not going to be able to go out there and rotate four quarterbacks in, we got to find a way to win this next game," explained Petrino.
The defense appeared to play with a bigger chip on their shoulders, holding the Bears to 317 total yards of offense. Sure, they gave up some points, but they were aggressive and created a couple of turnovers in the form of interceptions from Marcus Ward and Arius Wright while also collecting a safety late in the game created by the tandem of Chuck Franks and Kalvin Robinson.
Special teams came up with a big play late in the second quarter when Tyree Robinson found a crease in Morgan State's protection and broke through to break-up a field goal attempt by Chris Moeller. The ball took a couple of lonely bounces before Jonathan Dowling scooped up the leftovers and jetted down the sidelines for a 70-yard touchdown return.
All facets of the game were well-represented for Western Kentucky on Saturday night. Morgan State was simply outmanned, outclassed, and outworked.
This one was easy, and while the instruments got a little more tuning, the real drama begins next Saturday with Navy.
Antonio Andrews and Tyree Robinson
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