KSU faces unknown in Allen

By LINDA YOUNKIN State Journal Sports Writer Published:

Here's what Kentucky State football coach Donald Smith knows about Allen University - the Hornets are 1-0 with a 28-20 win over Cheyney State.

"We're really going into the game in the dark," said Smith, who added that Allen didn't want to exchange game films. "It'll show our coaching staff's maturity because it'll take the first quarter, the first half to see what they're doing and adjust to it."

But KSU is also going into Saturday's game on an upswing, having beaten Clark Atlanta 35-18 last week in Atlanta. The Thorobreds play Allen in the second annual Heritage Classic at Dunbar High School with kickoff at 5 p.m.

"We saw some very positive plays in our game," Smith said. "It was our first game out, and we only had five penalties. The thing that really impressed me outside of our discipline was the way we've grown as a team and matured.

"We had some adversity," he added. "We had five fumbles and lost three of them, but we bounced back. We had five turnovers, but we were still able to manufacture 35 points."

Much of the credit for that goes to junior quarterback Joe McBride, a junior college transfer whose performance last week earned him offensive player of the week and newcomer of the week honors from the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference.

McBride completed 23 of 36 passes for 287 yards and three touchdowns with no interceptions. KSU gained 95 yards on the ground with freshman Roni Robinson, a graduate of Franklin County, rushing for 57 yards and one touchdown which came on a one-yard run.

"I've told people it'll be a few games before we see the real Roni," Smith said. "You can't expect someone who's been out of football for 5 1/2 years to come out and light up a game."

For more on this story, see the latest State Journal.

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