|Wallace, Anderson approach offensive milestones|
|Published Thursday, November 1, 2012 9:12 am|
Johnson C. Smith is on the brink of a couple of offensive milestones.
|Johnson C. Smith quarterback Keahn Wallace is within 74 yards of the school single-season passing record. Tailback Dedrick Anderson needs 137 yards to reach the 1,000-yard plateau.|
Golden Bulls quarterback Keahn Wallace is within 74 yards of the school single-season passing record and tailback Dedrick Anderson is 137 yards shy of becoming the first 1,000-yard rusher in 21 years. The season finale – and a chance at finishing above .500 – is Nov. 3 when JCSU plays Livingstone in the Commemorative Classic at McGirt Field. The Golden Bulls haven’t recorded back-to-back winning campaigns since 1972-73.
“I want them to achieve their goals, but right now, we’ve got to get this win more than anything,” offensive coordinator Steve Shipp said. “We’ve come too far not to finish out on top. The best we can do is 6-4, but that’s pretty good and it puts us on the right path (for 2013).”
The Golden Bulls couldn’t get on that road without Wallace, a sophomore, and Anderson, a senior.
New offensive coordinator Steve Shipp sought more balance in the offense by turning to the 5-4, 145-pound Anderson as an every-down running back. He’s responded with a career season: 175 carries for 863 yards and five touchdowns. He’s also one of five Golden Bulls with double-digit receptions – 22 – for 271 yards and two scores. The last JCSU player to break 1,000 yards was tailback Tyrone Corlew in 1991.
“(Getting to 1,000 yards rushing) would be a big accomplishment,” Anderson said. “It would be more of a thanks to my (offensive) line and my coach because it would be big for them to get me that, too. It’s something I always wanted in college to break 1,000. I thought getting 1,000 all-purpose would be great, but to get 1,000 rushing is a great accomplishment.”
While Anderson has boosted the ground attack, Wallace is flourishing as a passer, hitting 161-of-261 attempts for 2,057 yards and 20 touchdowns. Wallace also is less involved as a runner with 24 yards and two scores this season compared to 473 yards and eight touchdowns in 2011. He doesn’t miss the pounding, either.
“That balanced attack made it easier on me,” Wallace said. “I don’t have to do as much as far as running the ball. We put the ball in the right guy’s hands to run the ball and let him make plays. The rest fell in place.”
Although he’s on the verge of eclipsing Harding High graduate Ryan Carter’s standard of 2,129 yards set in 2010, Wallace is quick to praise his offensive mates and Shipp, who tweaked the scheme to make it more efficient. JCSU is averaging 28.4 points a game and is 60 points from tying the school single-season record of 316.
“All the credit has to go to my O-line and receiving corps, because without them, none of this would be possible,” Wallace said.
Livingstone (2-7, 2-4) is on a four-game losing streak after a 47-29 pounding by Fayetteville State last week. The Blue Bears gave up 522 yards, including 376 on the ground. Shipp wants to win and help Anderson and Wallace meet their targets.
“I know how it feels to be a player and close to achieving goals,” said Shipp, who was an all-America receiver at West Charlotte High and played college ball at N.C. A&T. “I want to do everything I can to make sure those guys achieve those goals.”
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