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Football Monarchs Close 2010 With 33-21 Win at N.C. Central

Courtesy: ODU Athletics
         
Release: November 20, 2010
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Nov. 20, 2010

Final Stats

DURHAM, N.C. -- In its final game playing as an independent, the Monarchs downed North Carolina Central at O'Kelly-Riddick Stadium, 33-21, to close out the 2010 season.

The win was ODU's fifth straight since its loss against #14/16 Cal Poly that dropped the Monarchs to 3-3 on the season. The Monarchs conclude the season at 8-3 and bring its two-year total to 17-5 overall and head into the Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) next year.

Redshirt junior Thomas DeMarco (Palm Desert, Calif.) passed for 286 yards and a touchdown before being sidelined in the third quarter with a shoulder injury. Redshirt sophomore Reid Evans (Hampton, Va.) led the receiving corps with 111 yards on eight catches, while Mario Crawford, who last week become the second Monarch to surpass the 1,000 yard career rushing mark, ran the ball 15 times for 55 yards.

Defensively, Hofstra transfer Ronnie Cameron (Westbury, N.Y.) made a school record 14 tackles, including nine solo stops and 3.5 tackles for a loss of nine yards. Linebacker Craig Wilkins (Washington, D.C.) totaled 10 stops, including nine solo tackles.

Kick Jarod Brown for 15 of the Monarchs' 33 points, including four field goals. Among his four field goal attempts was a 48-yarder, tying for the school record for longest made field goal. Additionally, Brown's 31-yard attempt through the uprights made it a two possession game for N.C. Central heading into the game's final quarter.

Old Dominion scored on its first six possessions of the game and led by as much as 24-0 midway through second half action.

The opening stanza saw the Monarchs take control of the game with a 14-0 advantage. Reid Evans (Hampton, Va.) opened scoring the game on a 24-yard touchdown reception and was followed by Jamar Parham (Chesterfield, Va.) taking off for 47-yards on his first scoring run of the year to give ODU a 14-0 edge just under five minutes remaining in the opening stanza.

Halfway through the second quarter, the Monarchs added another 10 points to the scoreboard. Brown kicked a 33-yard field goal to cap a drive that continued from the end of the first quarter and Mario Crawford (Detriot, Mich.) punched in his sixth touchdown of the year and 12th of his career with 10:14 remaining. The Eagles finally broke onto the scoreboard with 8:46 left as each team began trading scores heading into the half.

The N.C. Central drive started with the Eagles' Phillip Barren getting into ODU territory on a 51-yard kick off return. Just three plays later Jordan Reid on the QB keeper found a gap to run for 20 yards into the end zone.

The Monarchs immediately responded on the next drive with a field goal. Driving to the Eagle's nine-yard line, DeMarco was unable to connect with either James Edwards (Va. Beach, Va.) , one of 11 seniors playing in their final game as a Monarch, or Chris Lovitt (Stafford, Va.) resulting in Brown's second field goal of the game.

The Eagles used a 12-play, 66 yard drive on their next time down the field capped by Geovonie Irvine catching a 19-yard pass from Reid and Brown kicked a 48-yard field goal on the following Monarch drive for the 30-14 ODU edge at the half.

Brown's field goal tied the ODU record for the longest field goal made.

Momentum started to swing in favor of the Eagles early in the third quarter.

DeMarco played just four snaps in the third quarter, with his final throw being an N.C. Central interception. For the rest of the way, the Monarchs would have to rely on true freshman Rashad Manley (Hampton, Va.) making just his second career appearance and the run game.

With a chance to extend its lead, ODU's Brown had a 43-yard attempt blocked and after a Michael Williams (Norfolk, Va.) fumble recovery, ODU was unable to advance the ball more than two yards.

The Eagles cut their deficit to nine, 30-21 with 3:29 left in the third quarter with a 38-yard touchdown reception by Irvine.

A 29-yard kick return by Lee Daniel (Baltimore, Md.) put the Monarchs into striking distance though and would help put the game out of reach for N.C. Central. Four plays later, Brown's fourth and final field goal from 31-yards out made it 33-21 with less than two minutes remaining in the third quarter.

The ODU defense clamped down in the fourth quarter not allowing the Eagles just 38 yards of total offense and to get any closer to the end zone than the ODU 36.

N.C. Central needed at least two possessions to steal the win from ODU entering the fourth quarter. Their first drive of the quarter for N.C. Central got the Eagles to the 36, but looking to advance the chains on fourth and five, tackles Chris Burnette (Randallstown, Md.) and Cameron made sure the Eagles would be going no further.

Jonathan Plisco's (Newport News, Va.) 55-yard punt helped pin the Eagles back in their own territory on their second drive. A big stop for the Monarchs' included a seven-yard sack by Eric Saylor that helped N.C. Central gain only 10 yards on the six-play drive.

Central's final drive started with 4:43 remaining in the game and would see the Eagles pushed back for negative yardage. Old Dominion would run out the clock and close out the 2010 year with the win.

The Old Dominion football team joins the CAA in 2011. The 2011 season kicks off with Campbell on September 3rd. The Monarchs also have non-conference dates with Georgia State and Hampton before its inaugural season in the toughest FCS conference in the nation. Home CAA dates include UMass, Towson, James Madison, and Richmond. On the road, the Monarchs will tackle Delaware, Rhode Island, Villanova, and William & Mary.

MONARCH MOMENTS:

ON THE ROAD:
ODU is 6-1 all-time on the road in their young history and 4-0 in 2010 thanks to its 33-21 win at N.C. Central Saturday. The lone setback away from the friendly confines of Foreman Field at S.B. Ballard Stadium was a 34-29 loss at Fordham.

BACK-TO-BACK SUCCESS:

 Building upon the success of a 9-2 inaugural campaign as the winningest FCS start-up program, year two of Monarch football has proven to be just as successful ending the 2010 campaign at 8-3. Many could argue with a slate full of FCS opponents and all three losses coming in winnable games against teams ranked among the Top 25, the Monarchs are the winningest start-up first year and second year program in the books.

The Coastal Carolina Chanticleers kicked off its first season of football with a 6-5 mark in 2003, while year number two in 2004 was a historic one, as the Chanticleers captured the Big South Conference title in just their second year of play, posting a perfect 4-0 mark in league play and 10-1 record overall.

A notable difference, however, from the Monarchs' year two schedule and the Chanticleers' second season schedule is that ODU will have played a Division I FCS program in all 11 contests, while Coastal Carolina's slate featured three Division II squads.

South Florida, whose second year mark of 8-3 is what the Monarchs are aiming to match, played as an independent in the FCS during year two in 1998. The South Florida schedule in 1998 featured wins over Liberty, Elon, Charleston Southern, Morehead State, the Citadel, as well as Slippery Rock and Valparaiso. Losses for the Bulls were to the national runner-up Georgia Southern, 20th-ranked Hofstra, and Western Kentucky. The Bulls would later transition to the FBS in 2000, the Bulls' fourth year of existence.

Robert Morris was one of the winningest start-ups over the last handful of years going 7-1-1 in their first season back in 1994. The second year of Colonial football had the squad going 6-4 playing a schedule similar to its first year with a mix of FCS, Division II, and Division III programs.

Next on the list of success in year two of football would be Bryant. Going just 3-6 in 1999, the Bulldogs improved to .500 in the second year, but played a schedule primarily filled with Division II & III programs.

NEW RECORD BOOK MATERIAL:
Jarod Brown ties the school record for longest field goal made. Brown's 48-yard attempt with seconds remaining in the 2nd quarter gave ODU a 30-14 lead. Brown ties the record, which is also held by Drew Hareza with his 48-yard field goal in the inaugural game last season against Chowan on September 5, 2009. Brown's previous high was 44 against Georgia State back on October 30th of this year. Brown's longest attempt was a 50-yarder that went wide left in home finale vs. VMI.

Ronnie Cameron also puts his name into the record book with 13 tackles, surpassing the previous record of 12 set by T.J. Cowart in last weekend's home finale win over VMI. Cameron and Craig Wilkins nine solo tackles in the win tie for the most unassisted stops by a Monarch in a game.

OPENING WITH A BANG:
ODU scored on its opening drive for the sixth time this season and the 13th time in the 22-game history of the program.

CAA PLAY:
Want to see the Monarchs play in the CAA next year? If you aren't already a season ticket holder, make sure you are on the wait list for tickets. Should single game tickets become available, waiting list members will receive the opportunity to purchase tickets. Don't miss out on ODU's first year in the CAA! Sign up now!

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