Herd Downs Tribe In Season Opener

Sept. 1, 2005

Final Stats

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. (AP) - Backup Bernie Morris threw three touchdown passes and Marshall rallied to beat Division I-AA William & Mary 36-24 on Thursday night.

Marshall won in Mark Snyder's head coaching debut despite giving up 362 yards on defense. Snyder was Ohio State's defensive coordinator last season.

Marshall trailed 24-23 late in the third quarter but came back behind Morris to avoid its first loss to a I-AA opponent since 1995, when it fell to Montana in the I-AA championship game.

Morris, a sophomore, led all four of Marshall's touchdown drives in relief of Jimmy Skinner, who made his first start. Morris finished 15-of-23 for 215 yards. Skinner, who sat out the second half, went 11-of-17 for 98 yards.

Ahmad Bradshaw, a sophomore who was expected to carry Marshall's offense with the bulk of last year's unit lost to graduation, scored twice in his first career start.

Mike Potts, also making his first career start, threw touchdown passes on his team's first two drives of the second half for William & Mary's only lead. Potts finished 16-of-30 for 164 yards.

On the next series, Morris fumbled and Ryan Nickell recovered for William & Mary at the Marshall 34. But Potts then fumbled, Marshall's Matt Couch picked up the loose ball and went 70 yards to put Marshall ahead.

Morris, who threw TD passes of 52 yards to Bradshaw and 25 yards to Shawn Lauzon for a 23-10 halftime lead, added a 12-yard TD toss to Hiram Moore in the fourth quarter to close the scoring.