Inside Hotlanta and the SIAC
By Hal Lamar
Photos by Patsy Collier-Lamar
ATLANTA, Ga.-Ole’ Reggie Ruffin and the Miles Bears are neither shucking nor jiving in the 2012 grid season. The boys from Fairfield Alabama, just a rock throw from downtown Birmingham, went to Albany to take on the Rams in a re-match of last year’s first SIAC championship game held in the ATL, Most thought this game would be as hatband-tight as the 20-17 score for all the marbles in 2011.
The Bears, who I once called the bad news Bears (but not anymore), stormed onto the Albany campus, went down that hill to the stadium and went to work. By halftime, the Bears were leading ASU 20-6. They returned to the field for second half play and then REALLY went to work , blanking the Rams 21-0, stunning the 7,211 mostly partisans in attendance. Miles scored four times and saved the best for last. With 1:42 left in the game, Ledarius Thompson, a senior punt returner and kickoff specialist from Fairfield, Alabama, caught an Albany punt at the Miles 10 and then with great blocking from special teams, galloped 90 yards for the final score. It left the Rams with a 1-3 overall record, a serious conference loss but perhaps most importantly, a loss of face before the hometowners. The last time ASU got off to this slow a start losing three of their first four ball games was in 2002, when they opened that season losing to Valdosta State, West Georgia…..and Miles.
Elsewhere in the SIAC, Fort Valley handed James Woody’s Benedict Tigers their fourth straight loss 33-10 . Valley took a 23-0 lead by halftime and tacked on 10 more in the second. Valley quarterback Antonio Henton, the senior from Fort Valley, passed for 183 yards and threw three touchdowns…..
Stillman rebounded from two straight losses to win at home over Kentucky State 27-8. It was an important conference win for the Tigers…..
Here in the ATL, both CAU and Morehouse lost. The latter surrendered to Lane College for the first time in six years, losing in overtime 37-34. The lead see-sawed back and forth throughout regulation play with the host Tigers tying the score late in the fourth quarter, 34-34, A chance to take a one point lead was doomed when the PAT attempt failed for the first time in five tries. Lane then scored a field goal on their possession in overtime to win it and give the Dragons a 2-2 overall and a 1-2 conference record which isn’t bad considering that this is one of the school’s better starts since 2007 when the Dragons went 6-1 in the first seven games of that season. Meanwhile, Morehouse at 1-3 is slipping slowly into darkness. They are in fourth place in the five team SIAC east…..
Meanwhile, Clark-AU embarrassed themselves in front of the hometowners by allowing visiting Concordia-Selma to score 22 unanswered points in the 4th period to slide by the Panthers 22-17. Perhaps the most humiliating aspect of the game was that CAU led 17-0 through three quarters before the big collapse……
XTRA POINTS: The 100 Black men of Atlanta are ready to unfurl their 23rd edition of the Atlanta Football Classic. FAMU comes to town with a record of 2-2 and Southern arrives with a 1-2 mark and an interim coach after the school released 3 year head coach Stump Mitchell from his head coaching duties. According to media and school accounts on the website, Mitchell will be assigned to other duties on campus. His defensive coordinator, Dawson Odums is interim head coach through the remainder of the season. …I seem to remember at last year’s Classic which Southern lost 38-33 on the strength of an Atlanta native turned Rattler Lavante Page that Mitchell mentioned casually but with a slight ring of pessimism about his future as Southern’s head coach…..
THIS WEEK’S GAMES AND PICKS
Albany State over Kentucky State- Chicago
Lane over Stillman- Jackson Tenn.
Morehouse over CAU-CAU Field
Miles over Benedict-Fairfield Alabama
Fort Valley over Tuskegee-Tuskegee Alabama
Got an item? Contact Hal -> hallamar at comcast.net