Tag Archives: Conference USA

49ers future schedule building

Charlotte 49ers Football Adds Pair of Big Ten Series

CHARLOTTE, N.C.  — The Charlotte 49ers, who will play in their second season in the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) this fall as a member of Conference USA, have announced the scheduling of a pair of series against Big Ten opponents and the completion of their 2019 non-conference slate.

Charlotte will play a home-and-home series with Maryland in 2022 and 2023.  The 49ers will also play road games at Indiana in those same seasons.  The contests against those Big Ten schools give the 49ers at least one power five conference opponent in each of the next 10 seasons with three such games scheduled at home.

Charlotte will host Maryland, Sept. 10, 2022 at Jerry Richardson Stadium and travel to College Park, Md., Sept. 9, 2023.  The home game will be the 49ers second against a power five foe.  Charlotte hosts Duke, of the ACC, Sept. 11, 2021.  The 49ers will also host the ACC’s North Carolina, Sept. 6, 2025.
The road games at Indiana will be played Oct. 1, 2022 and Sept. 23, 2023.
In addition, the 49ers have completed the 2019 non-conference slate. Charlotte will open the season at home, Aug. 31, against Gardner-Webb.  Each of the next four non-conference seasons are now complete.
The full 2016 schedule has been released and includes non-conference home games against Elon and Eastern Michigan and non-conference road games at Louisville and Temple.  The Conference USA slate includes four home games and four road games.
Season tickets for the 2016 campaign are currently available.  Visit charlotte49ers.com or call 704/687-4949 for more information.
Upcoming Non-Conference Slates:
(dates subject to change)
Sept. 1 at Louisville
Sept. 10 Elon
Sept. 17 Eastern Michigan
Sept. 24 at Temple
Sept. 2 at Eastern Michigan
Sept. 9 Georgia State
Sept. 16 North Carolina A&T
Sept. 23 at Kansas State
Sept. 1 Fordham
Sept. 8 Appalachian State
Sept. 22 at Massachusetts
Nov. 3 at Tennessee
Aug. 31 Gardner-Webb
Sept. 7 at Appalachian State
Sept. 14 Massachusetts
Sept. 21 at Clemson
Sept. 19 at Duke

Sept. 26   Georgia State

Blake Brewer kicking a field goal against Georgia State - Charlotte Sports Information photo
Blake Brewer kicking a field goal against Georgia State – Charlotte Sports Information photo
Sept. 11 Duke
Sept. 18   at Georgia State
Oct. 2 at Illinois
Sept. 10 Maryland
Sept. 17   at Georgia State
Oct. 1 at Indiana
Sept. 9 at Maryland
Sept. 16   Georgia State
Sept. 23 at Indiana
Sept. 7 at North Carolina
Sept. 6 North Carolina

Charlotte 49ers sign 12 players


Charlotte, N.C. –   Charlotte 49ers head football coach Brad Lambert has announced the program’s fifth recruiting class.  The  49ers announced the signing of 12 players, today, who join three mid-December signees.  Now in the program’s fourth year, the 49ers will be competing for the second time at the FBS level as a member of Conference USA in 2016. The 49ers competed as an FCS Independent in 2013 and 2014 before joining C-USA, last year.
The full 15-member signee class has four in-state players from North Carolina and nine from the North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia and Virginia region.  The other six signees come from Florida, Kentucky, New Jersey and Denmark. Three signees: Butler High’s RB Ben LeMay; Vance High’s LB Anthony Butler and East Gaston High’s RB Robert Washington hail from the Charlotte region.
The class includes the first four-star recruit that the 49ers have signed out of high school: East Gaston’s Robert Washington as well as three-star prospects Ben LeMay and DL Johnny Ray.  December transfer QB Kevin Olsen was a four-star recruit out of high school.

More on the signees

Theis Bagnkop
6-4; 300; OL
Frederikshavn, Denmark
Frederikshavn Business College/Louisburg College
Two-year star at Louisburg College … Hurricanes enjoyed a 7-1 season in 2015 and were ranked 15th the NJCAA national poll … converted defensive lineman … on OL, Bagnkop helped Louisburg put up 43.6 points and 452.6 yards per game … team’s 336.0 rushing yards per game led NJCAA … 2688 total rushing yards ranked 5th … Hurricanes ranked 4th with 35 rushing TDs … Bagnkop did not give up a single sack … former hockey player in Denmark … father played hockey professionally in Denmark … Named a Hurricane Scholar-Athlete in March, 2015 and was on the Hurricanes Honors List for posting a GPA between 3.0-3.49 in Spring, 2015 …  chosen as a Louisburg College Student Ambassador for 2015-16.
Ryan Carriere
6-4; 230; TE/H
Loganville, Ga.
A three-year varsity player for the Rams … a two-start recruit by Rivals.com and 247Sports … named first team all-Metro by the Atlanta Journal Constitution … 3rd-team all-Gwinnett by the Gwinnett Daily Post… participated in all-Gwinnett County All-Star Game … averaged 17.5 yards per catch (192 yards; 11 receptions) … led the Rams to the AAAAAA Region 8 Championship … ranked 4th in Georgia and reached the AAAAAA state semifnals … went 13-1  with a perfect 8-0 mark in Region 8 for coach Mickey Conn … Rams were 10-2 in 2014 with a 7-1 record in Region 8 … advanced to the second round of the state playoffs.
Ben DeLuca
6-2; 185; DB
Orlando, Fla.
Bishop Moore Catholic
Second-Team all-State Class 5A performer (Florida Times-Union) for 2015 5A FHSAA State Champions … Hornets went 14-1 and claimed the 5A District 13 title with a 4-0 mark and just 7 points allowed for coach Matt Hedrick … had 127 tackles (36 solo) with 2 TFL and 4 INT … team’s defensive captain … three-year starter … #50 on Orlando Sentinel’s 2016 Central Florida Super60 … had over 100 tackles and 4 INT as a junior as the FHSAA Regional champion Hornets reached the 5A state semifinals with another 14-1 mark and perfect 4-0 record in 5A District 11 …  three-time district champs were 8-3 in 2013 (4-0 in 5A District 11) … led Hornets to a 35-5 record as a varsity player.
Jacione Fugate
5-11; 175; RB
Hampton, Va.
A 2015 Daily Press All-Star … second team all-5A South by recruit757.com … ran for 1158 yards and 15 TDs as a senior … averaged 7.3 yards per carry for head coach Alonzo Coley … three-year varsity player … named to the 2014 all-757 Camp team where he posted the top 40 yard dash and a top five vertical jump …  Warriors reached the second round of the 2014 6A State Playoffs … named second-team all-South 6A as a junior … first team all-conference in 2014 … second team all-conference in 2013 …track athlete.
Timothy Horne
6-5; 280; DL
Wadesboro, N.C.
A 2015 Shrine Bowl participant for head coach Ralph Jackson … on the roster for the 2015 Blue-Grey Regional Combine in North Carolina … a three-year varsity player for the Bearcats … had 22 tackles as a junior with 2 sacks … 17 tackles, 1.5 sacks and 2 fumble recoveries as a sophomore … also plays basketball.
Ben LeMay
5-9; 210; RB
Matthews, N.C.
A three-start recruit by ESPN.com and 247Sports.com … two-star recruit by Rival.scom … four-year varsity letterwinner played on Bulldogs 2012 NC 4AA state championship team … a part of three Southwestern 4A Conference titles … two-time all-Southwestern 4A Conference selection for coach Brian Hales … rushed for 4059 career yards and 74 career TDs … added 896 receiving yards … Bulldogs went 10-3 in 2015 and earned a share of the Southwestern 4A Conference title with a 5-1 record … named SW4A all-conference … reached the second round of the 4AA state playoffs … Southwestern 4A all-Conference pick as a junior as Bulldogs went 11-4 and finished as SW 4A runner-up with a 5-1 mark …  again reached the 4AA second round … rushed for 1565 yards and 24 TDs as a junior (7.4 yds/carry; 124 yds/game) … three-year starter helped Butler to the 4AA state semifinals as a sophomore … rushed for 1038 yards and 18 TDs as a sophomore and added 650 receiving yards and 7 TDs … four-year varsity member enjoyed an unbeaten 15-0 record and a 4AA state title as a freshman … was second on team with 404 yards rushing and had 8 TDs … younger brother of current 49ers WR Uriah LeMay.
Nick Martin 
6-3; 260; DL
Lexington, Ky.
Paul Laurence Dunbar
AP Second-Team all-State defensive lineman in 2015 for coach Paul Rains … 3rd team all-state by Louiville Courier-Jornal … named first team all-City by the Lexington Herald … led team with 76 tackles including 31 TFL and 16 sacks … caused 6 fumbles … had 1 sack and was the leading tackler with 9 tackles in 2015 Border Bowl … was named Kentucky’s Lineman MVP … also played in Battle of the Bluegrass All-Star Game … missed his junior season with a broken foot … was first team all-City as a sophomore, as well … four-year starter helped Bulldogs to a 6-6 record and the second round of the 6A state playoffs in 2013.
Aaron McAllister
6-0; 200; DB
Live Oak, Fla.
One of the area’s top athletes … earned 2015 all-Area first team selection on offense (UTIL) … produced 757 rushing yards with 15 TDs and 440 receiving yards and 9 TDs … also had two punt return TDs … as a defensive back pulled in four interceptions … named to FACA All-Star Game  … led Bulldogs to a 10-3 mark, including a 4-0 record as 5A District 3 Champs … lost in the 5A FHSAA Regional finals … 2014 Regional Champs reached the 5A state semifinals … after going 13-3 and claiming the 5A District 5 title with a 6-0 mark … three-year varsity player helped Bulldogs to a 7-3 record and a 5A District 5 co-champsionhsip with a 5-1 mark.
Austin Paraison
6-6; 270; DL
Lehigh Acres, Fla.
Four-year varsity player for the Lightning … two-star recruit by 247Sports … named honorable mention Fort Myers News-Press all-Area for first-year head coach James Chaney… 55 tackles in 2015 with 10 sacks and 20 TFLs … added a forced fumble … had 31 tackles and 2.0 sacks as a junior … played both offensive and defensive line … loves the “physical aspect of the game”.
Johnny Ray
6-5; 252; DL
Mt. Pleasant, S.C.
First team USA Today all-state performer …. three-star recruit by ESPN.com and 247Sports … two-star recruit by Rivals.com … named honorable mention all-Low Country by the Charleston Post & Courier … three-year varsity standout for the Warriors … had 33.5 tackles as a senior with 9 TFL and 4 sacks for coach Jimmy Noonan … added 8 QB hurries and two fumble recoveries … finished career with 60.5 tackles and 16 TFL, 6 sacks and 14 QB hurries … Named to South Carolina’s 2015 North-South All-Star … team’s defensive line MVP … named first team all-East Cooper.
Joe Thompson
6-1; 200; QB
Ashburn, Va.
Stone Bridge
Two-star recruit by Rivals.com … named honorable mention all-Met by the Washington Post … led Bulldogs to a VHSL 5A State Runner-Up finish in 2015 …  led an offense that scored 35 or more points in the four wins leading up to the state championship game … threw for 1377 yards as a senior (88-142) with 15 TDs and 6 INTs … dual-threat QB added 812 rushing yards … led Stone Bridge to a 10-5 record … placed second in 5A Conference 14 with a 3-1 mark … had 2101 passing yards as a junior with 12 TD’s … added 387 rushing yards and 9 receiving TDs … Bulldogs went 10-3 and reached the state quarterfinals … three-year varsity player for coach Mickey Thompson … helped Bulldogs to a 9-3 record as a sophomore.
Robert Washington
5-10; 201; RB
Huntersville, N.C.
East Gaston
Four-star recruit by ESPN.com … first four-start recruit to sign with the 49ers directly out of high school … had over 40 offers from top programs throughout the country and committed to Syracuse  before opting out over the summer … ESPN.com ranked him as high as #4 overall player in North Carolina and as the #13 running back prospect, nationally … played with the US National Team at every age level, beginning with the 2011 u-15 squad through the 2015 u-18 team … 3-start recruit by 247sports … Rivals.com ranked him 15th among RB prospects ….  Ran for 2512 yards as a sophomore … 2233 yards as a junior — two of the Top 10 single-season rushing perfomances in Mecklenburg County history … Rushed for 5762 yards in first three seasons to rank 4th all-time in county history … added 834 yards as a senior (playing in only 7 games) to finish career with 6596 career yards … attended two-time NCISAA state champ SouthLake Christian Academy before transferring to East Gaston for his senior season … helped East Gaston to a 7-5 record and a trip to the state playoffs … East Gaston hadn’t had a winning season since 2006 … rushed for 131 yards and 1 TD in state playoff game … East Gaston was 5-2 with Washington in the lineup … in an UpClose interview with Rivals.com he listed his biggest rival as himself.

DECEMBER, 2015 Signees:

Anthony Butler
6-2; 190; LB
Charlotte, N.C.
Three-year varsity standout … Cougars went 11-4 in his junior year and reached the 4A State semifinals … posted a 5-2 mark in MECKA 4A Conference to finish third … lost to Charlotte Catholic in the 2014 4A state semifinals … was 4th in conference 122 tackles as a junior, averaging 8.1 per game … added 3.0 sacks, 17.0 tackles for loss and one interception … 6-6 in his senior season and earned a spot in the 4A state playoffs … two-time team MVP … two-time all-MECKA 4A conference player … 2014 all-Charlotte Observer third team defensive back.
Kevin Olsen
6-3; 220; QB
Wayne, N.J.
Wayne Hills/Riverside (Ca.) City College
Younger brother of Carolina Panthers tight end Greg Olsen … originally a signee with Miami (Fla.) as a four-star recruit …  final college choices were Miami, Auburn and Wisconsin … helped Riverside Tigers to an 8-3 record in 2015 and a #4 seed in the California Community College Athletic Association (CCCAA) Southern California Regionals … RCC shared a National Central League title with a 5-1 mark … was ranked as high as first in the state after a 4-0 start … Olsen played in nine games, making five starts … was 98-of-174 for 1080 yards and 13 touchdowns … served a red-shirt season at Miami in 2013 and transferred after the 2014 season … considered one of the nation’s top pro-style quarterbacks out of high school … an Elite 11 Finalist … rated as a four-star recruit by ESPNU, 247sports.com, Rivals.com, scout.com and MaxPreps.com … Scout.com listed him as the fourth-best quarterback in the nation, ESPNU had him fifth and MaxPreps.com listed him sixth. … ranked as the #3 player in New Jersey by ESPN.com … 2013 Under Armour all-American … started in Under Armour all-America Game … was coached by his father, Chris Olsen, at Wayne Hills H.S.
Jamar Winston
6-8; 265; DL
Irmo, S.C.
Dutch Fork H.S./Hutchinson (Kan.) C.C.
Winston comes to the 49ers from Hutchinson (Kan.) Community College … originally signed with the 49ers in 2013 out of Dutch Fork High School before enrolling in junior college … starred on Dutch Fork’s Lower State Championship team that finished as the 2012 state runner-up …  had 81 tackles (52 solo) in 2012 with 18 TFL, 8 sacks and one forced fumble … Silver Foxes went 11-4 record on their way to a Region Championship … earned all-state honors … named the Best Lower State AAAA Lineman … all-region choice … participated in the Shrine Bowl … named Dutch Fork Most Valuable Lineman and the Palmetto Champions Lineman of the Year for coach Tom Knotts .. played in 7 games in 2011 with 10 tackles, 2 TFL and 1 sack … also returned an interception for a TD.

485 teams go 4-1

Photo courtesy of Charlotte Sports Information
Photo courtesy of Charlotte Sports Information

49ers Defense Rock Solid in 34-10 Win

Charlotte held Presbyterian to just 112 yards of total offense and red shirt junior quarterback Matt Johnson threw a pair of touchdowns as the 49ers downed the Blue Hose, 34-10 to improve to 2-0 in their first FBS season in front of a standing-room only home crowd on 16,631 at Jerry Richardson Stadium.

Slot receiver Austin Duke caught nine passes for 166 yards and a touchdown while red-shirt freshman defensive lineman Zach Duncan led a punishing defense with five tackles, a sack and three tackles for loss.

“I’m really proud of the guys,” said 49ers head coach Brad Lambert.  “They came out and played hard.  It took us a little bit to get going on offense then once we got going, I thought it rolled out pretty nice.  Our defense was humming early.”

Presbyterian (0-2) was held without a first down on three-and-out possessions on 11 of their first 12 drives.  Charlotte senior Branden Dozier had an interception on the other drive.   The 49ers ended the game with a school-record for fewest yards allowed (112), a school-record 19 tackles for loss and a school-record for fewest passing yards allowed (9).

“It’s the whole defense that is flying around,” said Dozier, who notched his first interception of the season.  “We were clicking on all cylinders.  Last year is in the past.  This year is a new chapter, new numbers, new league.  Coach (Matt) Wallerstedt has installed attitude and forcing the hand.  That’s what we’ve been doing since day one.”

Charlotte (2-0) scored late in the first quarter on a six-yard pass to Trent Bostick from Johnson, who split QB duties with red-shirt freshman Brooks Barden.  Charlotte broke it open in the second quarter with a touchdown run by Kalif Phillips and Duke’s TD reception.

By the end of the third quarter, the 49ers led 34-0, had allowed just three first downs and held the Blue Hose to 0-of-11 on third down conversions.

“The defense has come in every day ready to work,” said Duke, who notched the eighth 100-yard receiving game of his career and his second straight game with a TD catch.  “They’ have been working really hard to be really good.  That’s the biggest thing the defense has done.  They’ve worked their tails off every single day in the weight room and in practice.”

The 49ers broke the ice late in the first quarter with the six-yard pass from Johnson to Bostick with 00:42 left.

In the second quarter, Johnson completed third down passes to Duke (38 yards) and TL Ford II (13 yards) to set up a 24-yard field goal by Blake Brewer.  After a three-and-out for PC, Johnson hit Bostick for a 31-yard gain and Phillips rushed untouched for a 12-yard score to make it 17-0 with 4:51 left in the half.

“The offensive line gave me a big hole,” said Phillips of his first rushing TD of the season.  “The biggest hole I’ve seen in a long time.”

Another three-and-out that included a nine-yard loss on Duncan’s forced fumble gave the 49ers the ball at PC’s 39-yard line.  Johnson hit Duke over the middle for the 39-yard TD on the first play to put the 49ers ahead 24-0 with 3:23 to play.

It was the 14th one-play touchdown drive in the 49ers short history.  The quick-strike offense had produced two touchdowns less than 90 seconds apart and both came on drives of under 30 seconds.  Charlotte has scored 43 TDs all-time on drives of under 1:30.

Brewer hit a field goal from 35 yards and Barden, who made his first collegiate start, connected with running back Bradan Smith for a nine-yard TD pass to push the 49ers ahead 34-0 heading into the fourth quarter.  It was Barden’s first touchdown pass as a 49er and and the first TD for Smith, a junior college transfer from Hutchinson Community College.

Presbyterian kicked a 21-yard field goal early in the fourth and added a one-yard touchdown run by Darrell Bridges with 4:36 to play to close the scoring.

Charlotte opens Conference USA play, next Saturday, at Middle Tennessee.  It will be the 49ers first league game as a member of Conference USA.  Charlotte will return home to face Florida Atlantic at 7 p.m. Sept. 26.

Davidson Drops Home Opener to Catawba, 35-21

DAVIDSON, N.C. – Despite a 125-yard, two-touchdown performance from RB Jeffrey Keil, the Davidson football team fell to the Catawba Indians, 35-21, in their home opener Saturday night at Richardson Stadium.

RB Cary Littlejohn led the Indians with 192 yards rushing and one touchdown on 27 carries.

Senior running back Cary Littlejohn (Columbus, N.C./Polk Co. HS) ran for a career-high 192 yards - Catawba Sports Information photo.
Senior running back Cary Littlejohn (Columbus, N.C./Polk Co. HS) ran for a career-high 192 yards – Catawba Sports Information photo.

In addition to Keil’s impressive effort, WR William Morris led the ‘Cats in receiving with 76 yards and one touchdown, while QB John Cook completed 13-of-34 passes for 165 yards and one touchdown.

Davidson (0-2) started the game off with an interception by DB William Curran, but Catawba (1-1) was the first to find the end zone when Littlejohn scored on a 64-yard run.

The Wildcats tied the score at the 2:03 mark in the opening quarter when Keil found a hole for 21 yards that capped off an eight-play, 58-yard scoring drive.

The Indians grabbed momentum at the start of the second quarter, scoring two touchdowns, converting a two-point conversion and drilling a 30-yard field goal to go up, 25-7 with 3:46 left in the half.

Following an interception from DB Myles Atkins, Cook found Morris on a 42-yard reception before Keil ran it in from three yards out to make it 25-14 at the half.

A 25-yard field goal and a 49-yard touchdown pass in the third secured the game for Catawba.

Davidson scored its final touchdown with 5:08 left in the contest when Cook found Morris open in the corner of the end zone from 12 yards out.

Defensively, Atkins and DB Ryan Felice led the Wildcats with a career-high 10 tackles each, while LB Ben Rowell picked up his first-career sack for a loss of 11 yards in the fourth quarter.

The Wildcats will enjoy a week off before returning to the gridiron Saturday, Sept. 26 at PFL foe Morehead State. Kickoff is set for 1 p.m.

Win over Shaw pushes Wingate to 2-0

Durham, N.C. – Wingate University sophomore running back Lawrence Pittman (Charlotte, N.C.) rushed for a career-high 147 yards on 20 carries with two touchdowns, helping the Bulldogs take a 30-16 NCAA Division II football victory over Shaw University Saturday night at Durham County Memorial Stadium .

Wingate improves to 2-0 overall following the first-ever meeting between the Bulldogs and the SU Bears. Shaw is 0-2 overall. Wingate opens the home portion of its 2015 schedule Saturday, hosting Brevard College for a 1:30 p.m. South Atlantic Conference game. Shaw visits UNC Pembroke the same day at 7 p.m.

“We had great execution in the first half,” Wingate head coach Joe Reich says. “We were out of sync in the second half…we never got into an offensive rhythm after halftime. We need to finish better.”

The Bulldogs led 30-0 early in the fourth quarter before the Bears scored a safety and two touchdowns in the final six-plus minutes of the contest. Wingate junior wide receiver Jordan Berry (Irmo, S.C.) registered his fifth 100-yard receiving game, catching eight passes for 113 yards and one score. Bulldog redshirt junior quarterback Kyle Johnson (Hickory, N.C.) completed 17-of-30 passes for 193 yards and one TD.

Wingate’s first possession featured the longest drive for either team Saturday. The Bulldogs moved the ball 98 yards on 12 plays, consuming 4:50 from the game clock. Pittman carried the ball six times on the drive, including his nine-yard, drive-finishing touchdown run. Bulldog junior place kicker Caleb Baird (Kinston, N.C.) nailed the first of his four PATs to make the score 7-0 visitors with 6:33 left in the first quarter.

A 23-yard SU punt gave Wingate great field position (WU 44) late in the opening frame. On the first play of the second quarter, Kyle Johnson did the honors with his second rushing TD in as many weeks. Johnson scored from five yards out, concluding a four-play, 56-yard drive. Baird’s extra point gave the Bulldogs a two-touchdown lead at the 14:53 mark of the second stanza.

Shaw turned the ball over on downs, setting the stage for Pittman’s second TD run. The Mallard Creek High graduate had three rushes on the drive, which covered 57 yards on seven plays. Pittman’s four-yard scoring run gave the visitors a 21-0 lead after Baird’s PAT with exactly eight minutes left in the second quarter.

A Johnson-to-Berry touchdown connection concluded the first half scoring. The Bulldogs had a short field, as freshman wide receiver Malik Bledsoe (Culloden, Ga.) made a big special teams play by recovering a fumble by the Shaw punter. Bledsoe returned the ball 10 yards to the Shaw 10-yard line. Three plays later, Berry found pay dirt after a two-yard scoring strike from Johnson at the 1:48 mark.

The two teams traded fourth quarter safeties before the Bears found their offensive groove late in the contest. Shaw senior quarterback Quenton Rucker (Atlanta, Ga.) connected with sophomore wide receiver Trevante Long(Charlotte, N.C.) on an 82-yard touchdown pass for the Bears’ first offensive TD of the season. Shaw specialist Danny Webster, Jr. (New Bern, N.C.) added the PAT to make the score 30-9 Wingate with 5:08 left in regulation.

Rucker finished a quick six-play drive with a 21-yard scoring pass to senior wide receiver Artravius James (College Park, Ga.) at the 1:49 mark. Webster booted the extra point to conclude the night’s scoring.

Wingate senior defensive back and team captain Nortavius Otis (Gastonia, N.C.) had eight tackles with six solo stops to lead the Bulldogs. Wingate redshirt senior defensive end Dillon Tucker (Denver, N.C.) was one of three WU players to record four tackles. Tucker filled out his statistical ledger with a fumble recovery and a shared quarterback sack.

Big defensive effort keys Johnson C. Smith win

Photo courtesy of Johnson C. Smith Sports Information
Photo courtesy of Johnson C. Smith Sports Information

Frankfort, Ky. – The Johnson C. Smith football team withstood an early turnover and limited Kentucky State to only 56 yards rushing while intercepting three Thorobred passes en route to a 38-14 road win at Alumni Stadium in Frankfort, Ky.

On the first JCSU drive, the offense struggled to get going, as Kentucky State recorded a sack on first down and two plays later, Herbin’s pass was picked off by KSU’s Nathan Robinson.  On the first Thorobred drive, KSU also fell victim to the interception, as JCSU’s Dave Mann (Atlanta, Ga.) stepped in front of an Ora Johnson pass, giving JCSU the ball at their own 40 yard line.  On the first play of the new drive, Kentucky State’s Raymond Malone scooped up a JCSU fumble and raced 44 yards for the touchdown.  The point after attempt was good, staking KSU to the early 7-0 lead at the 12:38 mark.

The Golden Bulls would respond quickly.  Following a 45 yard kickoff return by Carlo Thomas (East Orange, N.J.), JCSU’s Tromecio Summers (Charlotte, N.C.) ripped off a 39 yard rush to take it to the KSU 7 yard line.  Playing in his first collegiate game, Harold Herbin (Fayetteville, N.C.) had a bootleg rush to the KSU one yard line, he punched it in for the first touchdown of his career.  Erik Amaya (Kannapolis, N.C.) knocked in the point after attempt was good to tie it at 7-7 at the 10:52 mark in the first quarter.

Amaya would then put JCSU on top 10-7 when he converted a career-long  41 yard field goal at the 6:51 mark following a KSU turnover.

On the first play of the second quarter, JCSU’s Javard Gaines (Newark, N.J.) broke through to block the KSU punt, returning it to the KSU 16.  Five plays later, Herbin found junior receiver Roderick Carter (Miami, Fla.) in the corner for an 11-yard touchdown strike.  Amaya’s PAT boosted the JCSU lead to 17-7.
The Golden Bulls would add another touchdown in the second quarter, this time from freshman running back Desean Binyard (Winston-Salem, N.C.), when he pushed through for a one yard score.  Amaya again added the extra point to push the lead to 24-7.

Neither team was able to get much offense going in the third quarter, but KSU struck at the 6:50 mark.  With JCSU pinned deep in their own territory, KSU’s Malone stepped in front of an errant Herbin pass, scoring from three yards out.  The successful point after attempt cut the JCSU lead to 24-14.

JCSU struck on it’s first drive of the fourth quarter when Herbin found Bryan Chambers for a 12-yard touchdown strike, boosting the lead to 31-14.

Kentucky State would embark on a promising drive, but the JCSU defense stiffened and forced a 49-field goal attempt.  JCSU safety Keith Darnell blasted through the KSU line to block the attempt, then scooped the ball and took it 53 yards for a touchdown, extending the JCSU lead to 38-14.

On the next KSU possession, JCSU’s Alfred Mickle picked off a wobbling Ora Johnson pass to seal the game.  JCSU would go on to melt the clock, taking the 38-14 road win.

Offensively, JCSU rushed for 132 yards, getting 55 from Summers and 42 from Binyard.  On the receiving end, Carter hauled in in four passes for 31 yards and one score.  Fred Scott(Stone Mountain, Ga.) caught one pass for a game-long 28 yards.

Defensively, the Golden Bulls were led by Carlo Thomas‘ five tackles, four of which were unassisted.  Thomas also had one interception and a pass breakup.  Senior LinebackerAustin Jacques (Springdale, Md.) had four tackles with one being for loss.  Defensive lineman Jamaal Tutt (Atlanta, Ga.) recorded four tackles on the day and had one sack for a 16 yard loss.  Travon Leake-Anderson (Richmond, Va.) and Brice Smith (Atlanta, Ga.) also recorded sacks for JCSU in the win.  All told, the JCSU defense had eight tackles for loss and forced four KSU turnovers on the afternoon while limiting the Thorobreds to only 132 yards of total offense on the afternoon.

The Golden Bulls will remain on the road next week,  travelling  to Morehouse on Saturday, Sept. 19 for a 7:00 p.m. tilt against the Maroon Tigers.

The Point After – Charlotte 49ers

Charlotte 34 Presbyterian 10

Jerry Richardson Stadium

Player Honors:

#49: Danny Book

Flag carriers WR Austin Duke; DB  Terrance Winchester; K  Blake Brewer

Captains:   Richard Murphy, Kalif Phillips, Branden Dozier and James Middleton


The 49ers improved their all-time record to 12-12 and their record as an FBS school to 2-0.

The 49ers are 3-0 all-time in their first home game of the year.

The 49ers have led opponents 44-3 in the first half, this year and are 11-0 all-time in games in which they have led at the half.

RS-Freshman QB Brooks Barden made his first career start

Barden and RS-Junior Matt Johnson both saw significant time at quarterback.  Johnson was 8-of-11 for 187 yards and two TDs.  Barden was 11-of-17 for 77 yards and one TD.

The three passing TDs are the most by the 49ers since throwing for four at the Citadel, Oct. 11, 2014.

Austin Duke had 166 receiving yards for his 8th career 100-yard game and fourth career game with 150+ yards.  It was his first 100-yard game of the season.

Austin Duke’s 166 yards is  third on the single-game receiving records. Duke holds the top-eight single-game receiving spots.

When Johnson hit Duke for a 39-yard TD on the first play of their fourth drive of the second quarter, Charlotte had notched its 14th all-time one-play TD drive.

That one-play TD drive took just 00:07 – the shortest TD drive in school history.

The one-play 39-yard TD drive (00:07) from Johnson to Duke and the preceding two-play drive capped by Kalif Phillips’ 12-yard TD run (00:27) gave the 49ers two more TD drives of under 90 seconds.  The 49ers have had three such drives this year and 43 in the school’s three-year history.

The 49ers 13-play, 69-yard drive that resulted in a 24-yard Blake Brewer field goals was the longest scoring drive in school history in regards to time of possession at 5:07.

Trent Bostick had a 6-yard TD reception from Johnson – it was his first TD of the year and 7th of his career.

Kalif Phillips scored the 49ers first rushing touchdown of the season with his second quarter, a 12-yard rush.   Phillips now has 33 career rushing touchdowns.

Brooks Barden threw his first career touchdown pass with a nine-yard TD pass to Bradan Smith in the third quarter. It was also Smith’s first career touchdown reception.

Andrew Buie led the 49ers with 80 yards – his career best in a Charlotte uniform. Previous career best came with 56 yards against Georgia State Sept. 4, 2015.

Buie’s team-high 80 yards rushing snapped a nine-game streak in which Kalif Phillips was the 49ers leading rusher.

Buie’s 29-yard run was the 49ers longest rush of the season.

Through two games, three players have over 20 rushes:  Buie 28, Phillips 27, Johnson 22

Phillips is the 49ers leading rusher after two games — slightly – 143 yds to Buie 136

Charlotte’s defense set records for fewest yard allowed (112), fewest passing yards allowed (9) and most tackles for loss (19).

The 49ers forced three-and-out punts on 11 of 14 drives by Presbyterian, including 11 of the first 12.

One drive by Presbyterian went -15 yards in three plays, thanks to Zach Duncan’s forced fumble.    That is the shortest drive, by yardage, the 49ers have allowed, all-time.

The 49ers held Presbyterian to 1 of 13 on third-down conversions.  In two games, opponents are 4-of-28 on third down (14%).

Charlotte defense held Presbyterian to a program low of 112 yards, breaking the previous record of 197 yards allowed against Johnson C. Smith Sept. 6, 2014.

14 different 49ers had a tackle for loss as Charlotte produced a school record 19 tackles for loss.  Larry Ogunjobi and Zach Duncan led the squad with 3.0 TFL’s each.

Ogunjobi leads the 49ers with 4.0 TFLs this season and now has 25 in his career — the first 49er to reach that milestone.

Tank Norman’s five tackles pushes him to the 100-tackle mark for his career.  He is the second 49er to reach the 100-career tackle plateau.  Norman leads the team with nine tackles, this year.

S Branden Dozier, who had three takeaways last year, pulled down his first interception of 2015.

Week 1 485 College notes

Blake Brewer C-USA Special Teams Player of the Week

Blake Brewer kicking a field goal against Georgia State - Charlotte Sports Information photo
Blake Brewer kicking a field goal against Georgia State – Charlotte Sports Information photo

Junior K Blake Brewer (Concord, N.C./Cannon School) became the first Charlotte 49ers player to earna Conference USA Player of the Week award when he was named C-USA Special Teams Player of the Week after Week 1. Players of the Week are voted on by a panel of the league’s media.

Brewer was 3-of-3 on field goal attempts and added two PAT’s in a perfect kicking perfomance that helped the 49ers defeat Georgia State, 23-20, in their FBS debut. Brewer connected from 45, 35 and 22 yards and kicked what proved to be the game-winner in the three-point win. His 45-yarder was the ninth successful kick from 40 or more yards in his career and he matched his own school record for most field goals made (3) without a miss.

The 49er Point After:

Charlotte 23 at Georgia State 20

Atlanta, Ga.  (Georgia Dome); Sept. 4, 2015

 49: Jamal Covington

Captains: Danny Book; Trent Bostick; Caleb Clayton-Molby; Branden Dozier

Flag carriers:  TL Ford II; Nick Cook; Anthony Covington

Game Ball:  Presented to Haley Ratliff, daughter of Offensive Line coach Phil Ratliff, who died, Aug. 9

 The 49ers first game at the FBS level

The 49ers first game against an FBS opponent

The 49ers first FBS win

 Three players started their 23rd straight game (every game in 49ers history):

 OL Danny Book;  OL Jamal Covington;  DL Larry Ogunjobi

 Key stat of the game:  3rd down conversions – CHA 11 of 21; GSU 3 of 15

TL Ford II caught five passes – each one for a first down, twice on 3rd and long (3rd & 10; 3rd & 9) Matt Johnson was 10-of-12 on third down with 7 completions for first downs.  On three of four scoring drives, Johnson completed a 3rd and long for a first down to keep the drive alive.

  1. 3rd & 10 – 19 to TL Ford II during FG drive, 10-0
  2. 3rd & 9 – 9 to TL Ford II during 74-yd TD drive, 20-3
  3. 3rd & 17  – 30 to Kofa in FG drive, 23-6

CB Terrance Winchester returns fumble 43 yards for TD on 4th play from scrimmage:

Terrance Winchester scored the sixth defensive TD in 49ers history and the second fumble return for a TD in school history. 

Winchester tied the school record with two takeaways in a game (FR; INT) and joins Greg Cunningham (2014) and Micah Bryan (2013) as the only 49ers with both a fumble recovery and interception in the same game.

Charlotte is 5-1 in games in which it scores a defensive TD.

Winchester’s TD came just 1:32 into the game.  It was the fourth fastest TD in school history.

  1. 00:17 – Matt Johnson – Austin Duke 65 yd TD at NCCU, 2014 (1st play)
  2. 00:30 – Matt Johnson 8 yd TD run at JMU, 2013 (2nd play)
  3. 00:46 – Mark Hogan 32 yd INT return vs. Campbell, 2013 (2nd play)
  4. 1:32 – Terrance Winchester, 43 yd fumble return, 2015 (4th play)
  5. 1:43 – Kalif Phillips, 6 yd TD run vs. Johnson C. Smith, 2014 (6th play)

Matt Johnson hits Austin Duke for 63-yard TD reception:

Austin Duke’s 63-yard TD catch is his eighth career TD catch of 60 or more yards.

7 of Duke’s last 8 TD catches have been 60 or more yards.

Matt Johnson threw a TD pass for his eighth straight game (7 games before injury, last year).

Johnson and Duke have connected for 8 career TD passes of 60+ yards.

The 63-yard TD pass was the 10th of Johnson’s career of 50+ yards

The TD drive took 1:21.   The 49ers had 22 TD drives of 1:30 or less, last year. 

Blake Brewer Hits Three Field Goals:

Blake Brewer tied his own school record with three field goals made (45, 35, 22)

His 3-of-3 kicking also ties his record for most FGM without a miss

His 45-yarder is the 9th FGM of 40+ in his career.


LB Nick Cook, who missed all but one game, last year, forced a fumble and had a fumble recovery while leading the 49ers with six tackles (six solo).

S Branden Dozier, last year’s leading tackler, shared the game-high with six tackles (five solo).

Charlotte had 8.0 tackles for loss, led by DL James Middleton (2.0) and LB Caleb Clayton-Molby (1.5)

Defensive linemen James Middleton (2.0), Larry Ogunjobi (1.0) and Devon Johnson (1.0) each had at least one tackle for loss.

Back on Defense: 

The 49ers had several starters who missed some or all of last year but returned as starters in game one to make immediate impacts:

  1. CB Terrance Winchester (missed 4 games with injury): FR for TD; INT, 4 tackles
  2. LB Nick Cook (missed final 10 games with injury): tm-hi 6 tackles; 1 FF; 1 FR
  3. LB Caleb Clayton-Molby (missed final 8 games with injury): 3 tackles, 1.5 TFL
  4. DL Devon Johnson (missed all of 2014 rehabbing injury):  2 tackles, 1.0 TFL
  5. DB Devin Pearson (missed all of 2014 as red-shirt): 3 tackles, 1 FF

Rushing Balance:

Kalif Phillips had 19 carries (90 yards), Matt Johnson had 17 carries (32 yards) and West Virginia transfer Andrew Buie had 16 carries (56 yards).  Last year, Phillips (229 carries) had 52% of the 49ers rushes.


The 49ers lost the turnover battle, 5-3 – the second time in 49ers history that they won the game despite losing the turnover battle.  Charlotte beat Wesley, last year despite losing TO battle, 3-2. 

The 5-3 margin is the largest TO deficit that the 49ers have had, yet still won.

The five turnovers are the second most in school history

 Charlotte improved to 10-0 in program history when it leads at the half.

Dating back to last year, the 49ers have won three straight games.

Charlotte ran 86 offensive plays


The 49ers host Presbyterian (FCS) Saturday, Sept. 12 at 12 noon (ASN/WCCB).

Charlotte is 2-0 in their first home games in its first two years

Charlotte is 1-0 vs. Presbyterian.  The 49ers posted their first FBS road win at Presbyterian, 45-21, in 2013. 

The two teams also faced each other when the CCUNC was a two-year institution playing a combination of varsity, JV and B teams from 1946-48. 

Tough opener for Davidson

CHARLESTON, S.C. – The Davidson football team fell to The Citadel Bulldogs, 69-0, in their season opener Saturday evening at Johnson Hagood Stadium.

In addition to 602 yards on the ground and eight rushing touchdowns, The Citadel (1-0) held the Wildcats (0-1) to just 104 total yards.

Running back Evan McField recorded a game-high 132 yards off 20 attempts with one touchdown, while Isiaha Smith ran for 109 yards and scored three touchdowns to lead both teams.

Defensively, the Bulldogs held Davidson (0-1) to just 46 yards rushing, while forcing four interceptions.

Linebacker Zack Popovec led both teams with a career-high nine tackles for the Wildcats, while defensive lineman Chris Woods and defensive back Ben Rowell each tallied a personal-best eight tackles.

Catawba falls to #4 West Georgia

SALISBURY, N.C. — NCAA II fourth-ranked West Georgia scored 28 unanswered points in the second half to claim an opening 44-13 win over host Catawba on Saturday afternoon at Shuford Stadium and Kirkland Field.  The Wolves overcame five turnovers in the win, forcing four and holding the Catawba Indians to just 145 total yards.

Quarterback Dallas Dickey was nearly perfect for West Georgia, completing 15-of-17 passes for 204 yards and a pair of scores.  He also ran for a touchdown.  Aares McCall eclipsed the 100-yard mark on the ground with 107 yards on 11 carries.

Dickey threw both of his touchdown strikes in the third quarter to help the Wolves break away from a 16-13 lead at the half.  His first strike went for 47 yards to Qa Walker and the second went to Shaq Hall for 29 yards to push the margin to 30-13 midway through the period.  West Georgia tacked on two fourth-quarter scores for the final margin.

Cary Littlejohn (Columbus, N.C./Polk Co. HS) produced the lone Catawba touchdown with a five-yard run late in the second quarter to pull the Indians within 16-13.  He finished with 57 yards on the ground.  Bruce Smith (Winston-Salem, N.C./N. Davidson HS) caught three passes for 22 yards.

Kyle Kitchens (Decatur, Ga./Decatur HS) had a big day on defense for Catawba.  He was in on seven tackles with three going for losses, including a sack.  He would force two fumbles and recover one.

Wingate blanks Johnson C. Smith

Charlotte, N.C.—-Wingate University redshirt junior quarterback Kyle Johnson (Hickory, N.C.) passed for a touchdown and rushed for a score, leading the Bulldogs to a 14-0 victory over Johnson C. Smith University Saturday night at the Irwin Belk Complex and Eddie McGirt Field. The contest was the season opener for both teams.

The shutout is Wingate’s fifth during the school’s senior college football history (1986-present). Four of Wingate’s five shutouts have come at the expense of CIAA members. The Bulldogs blanked Saint Augustine’s 30-0 last season (Sept. 13, 2014) and Fayetteville State 19-0 on August 26, 2006. Wingate opened the 2002 season with a 24-0 decision over the JCSU Golden Bulls (August 31).

“We believe this was a good first game for us,” Wingate head coach Joe Reich says. “We saw good things on both sides of the ball. We had some penalty challenges…but we were able to overcome those with big plays on defense and ball control on offense.”

Johnson completed 15-of-20 passes for 143 yards and one touchdown. He rushed six times for 51 yards. The two-year team captain opened the Bulldogs’ scoring with a nine-yard TD run in the first quarter. Johnson’s scoring scamper concluded a 13-play, 80-yard drive. Wingate junior place kicker Caleb Baird (Kinston, N.C.) added the PAT to make the score 7-0 ‘Dogs with 8:27 left in the first frame.

Wingate took the slim margin to the halftime locker room. Johnson and his offensive teammates struck again in the third quarter, putting together an eight-play, 79-yard march to take a two-touchdown margin. Bulldog redshirt junior wide receiver Jody Fuller (Indian Trail, N.C.) did the honors, hauling in a 38-yard TD pass from Johnson. Baird’s extra point concluded the scoring with 5:52 remaining in the third stanza.

The Bulldogs forced three fumbles to win the turnover margin 3-1. In his first game in the Navy Blue and Vegas Gold, redshirt freshman Robert Wallace (Covington, Ga.) had a team-best eight tackles with three tackles for loss (14 yards), 1.5 quarterback sacks (13 yards) and one fumble recovery. Three Wingate defenders had six tackles each.

Wingate senior defensive back Nortavius Otis (Gastonia, N.C.) forced the fumble which led to the Bulldogs’ second score. The JCSU Golden Bulls had second-and-two on the Wingate 23-yard line when Otis made his big play. Robert Wallace recovered and the Bulldog offense went to work.

Reich improves to 13-2 overall in season openers during his 15 Wingate seasons. He believes the Bulldogs are ready to take the next step. “We have some film now, so we can see where we need to improve,” Reich says. “Everyone always says the most improvement comes from game one to game two. We hope this is true.”

“We didn’t execute all the way through the game,” Reich says. “We give much credit to Johnson C. Smith. They have a young freshman QB with a tremendous upside… and they are very well coached. We were fortunate to pick up the victory.”

Wingate sophomore running back Lawrence Pittman (Charlotte, N.C.) made a triumphant return to his hometown, rushing 19 times for 94 yards (both career-highs). The Mallard Creek High School product also caught one pass Saturday night.

Both Fuller and junior wide receiver Jordan Berry (Irmo, S.C.) caught five passes each. Fuller had five catches for 64 yards and one touchdown. Berry recorded five receptions for 39 yards. Wingate redshirt sophomore tight end Jake Jensen (Fayetteville, N.C.) had two catches for 23 yards.

Wingate hits the road again next week, visiting Durham County Memorial Stadium to face Shaw University (6 p.m. kick-off). The WU Bulldogs and SU Bears will meet for the first time in history. Johnson C. Smith is also on the road next Saturday, visiting Kentucky State University.