ASU still working toward Turkey Day Classic against Tuskegee - Montgomery Alabama news.

ASU still working toward Turkey Day Classic against Tuskegee

The Alabama State offense has seemingly hit its stride heading into next Thursday's 89th Turkey Day Classic against Tuskegee.  

The Hornets (7-3) and the Tigers (9-1) will kick off on next Thursday, Nov. 22 just after 3 p.m. live on WVAS 90.7 FM and on ESPNU TV. A limited number of tickets remain, and may be purchased online at or by phone at (334) 229-4577. 

Last week at Southern, the offense needed every point in the 31-30 victory, ASU's third straight win and fifth in its last six games. It was the sixth consecutive game the Hornets have scored 30 or more points, the longest streak by an Alabama State football team since 1991-92, when the eventual SWAC and HBCU National Champions recorded eight straight 30+ point outings. 

"I've been most pleased with the way guys understand the system better," offensive coordinator Fred Kaiss said. "In the beginning of the year, I thought we were there, but we didn't have the continuity and we had a couple of hiccups. The guys have now gotten a feel for their roles on the team. It's not like we have one guy that's ‘mister everything', contrary to everyone's belief. We have lot of good football players." 

After averaging just over 24 points per game during the 2-2 start, Alabama State is averaging 38.3 points per game over the last six outings, including a season-high 54 points at Alcorn State. The Hornets have done it with good balance in the rushing game and passing game. For the season, Alabama State is averaging 179.2 yards rushing and 183.5 yards passing per game. 

"That's exactly how we are as an offense," Kaiss said of his units' balanced attack. "We have nine different players who have scored touchdowns. It's a combination of a little bit of a bunch of people who are really working hard, and I think that's what describes team. They're understanding what it takes to be a team. But, don't me wrong – we've left a lot of points on the field." 

Added to the explosion in points per game has been an improved rushing attack. In the past six games, the Hornets have rushed for 1,191 yards (198.5 per game) and 18 touchdowns. Just in the recent stretch of games, ASU has gained nine more rushing yards and scored the same number of touchdowns as it did the entire 2011 season.  

This season, the combination of RBs Isaiah Crowell and Malcolm Cyrus and QB Greg Jenkins have combined to rush for 1,584 yards and 26 touchdowns.  

"Last year we didn't have a run game," Kaiss said very candidly. "We were throwing the crap out of the ball doing anything we could to win. This year, we are where we need to be in balance. We've made a lot of strides. We still have a long way to go, but they're understanding what we're doing. We've made a lot of progress." 

Alabama State returns to practice Friday at 3 p.m.

INFORMATION SOURCE: Alabama State University Athletics

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