GREENSBORO - The North Carolina A&T football team doesn't
worry about style points. It concerns itself with results. The Aggies have won three straight games to
guarantee themselves their first winning season in nine years.
All three games are evidence the Aggies have learned how to
grind out and win close ballgames at home. Three weeks ago, the Aggies trailed
9-7 at halftime before their defense dominated Norfolk State, and the offense used
an effective running game to earn a 30-9 win. Last week, in their 16-3 win over
Florida A&M, the Aggies went without an offensive touchdown. But freshman
kicker Zach Cimaglia kicked three field goals and junior linebacker D'Vonte
Grant returned an interception 35 yards for a touchdown.
Against the Bulldogs on Saturday, the Aggies again went on
the grind. After the Bulldogs returned the opening kickoff 96 yards, the Aggies
trailed for 3 ½ quarters. Then in a period of 16 seconds, they scored two
touchdowns, one on a 34-yard run by Ricky Lewis, and the other on a 10-yard
fumble return by D'Vonte Graham. A&T's defense, the second-best in the
nation, has received the most credit, but A&T's offense seems to produce in
"I'm proud of the way our players hang in there and find
ways to win ballgames," said A&T coach Rod Broadway. "It's not pretty, but
it's a win. Our guys kept playing hard today, and they were rewarded for it
during the back end of the ballgame because some things went our way. To be 6-4
at this point in the season is a great accomplishment for our players because they've
worked their butts off this season."
THE STREAK: How
good has the Aggies defense been this season? When Lewis scored on a 34-yard
touchdown run in the first quarter, it marked the Aggies first offensive
touchdown in seven quarters. Yet, the Aggies are on a three-game winning
streak. That is because the A&T defense has not allowed an offensive
touchdown in 14 quarters. It is a span of 3 ½ games.
"The guys have a lot of pride in how they're playing right
now," said Broadway. "Our guys are being successful (on defense) because we
understand where we're supposed to fit and fill. They know where to line up,
and they have a clear understanding of what we want them to do."
SENIOR DAY: The Aggies honored 18 football players, three student
managers and one student trainer as a part of its Senior Day celebration before
the game. The football senior class overcame a 1-10 season in 2010 to post an
11-10 record over the last two seasons. They will also walk away with school's
first winning record in nine seasons.
"This will be our legacy," said senior linebacker Makari
Among the Aggies seniors are Mike Mayhew, the school's
all-time leading rusher, and Chris Neal, a four-year starter on the Aggies defensive
line. Pugh, Mayhew, Neal, Leroy Bradford, Jeremy Days, Brandon Hill, Brandon
Young, Brandon Hover, Thomas Hearn, Tony Mashburn, Mark Newton, Jermarion
Pegues, Donta Prince, Chris Andrews, Larry Raper, Devin Ray, Xavier Robinson
and Armon White were the 18 players honored.
Student mangers Alicia Funderburk, Shannon Sellers and
Shantel Wilkerson were also honored along with senior student trainer Kim
HOME SWEET HOME:
The Aggies are 10-2 at home under Broadway. The 6-4 Aggies have won all their
games at home. Their last win on the
road came on Oct. 1, 2011. They will try to end their seven-game road losing
streak next week at N.C. Central. But for now, the Aggies are content with
their success at home. Broadway has long had a reputation for getting his teams
to play well at home. N.C. Central was 18-5 and Grambling was 15-0 under
Broadway. As a head coach, Broadway is 43-7 at home.