wasn’t happy about was my accuracy and my balance in the pocket,” said Lauletta, who was rarely pressured. “I think I was more balanced today and I think a lot more extra yards came because the ball was on the money.”
UR (2-1), ranked No. 8 in the STATS FCS poll, led 48-7 at intermission. Lauletta threw touchdown passes of 6 yards, 14 yards, 3 yards, 70 yards, 6 yards and 34 yards before he was replaced by redshirt freshman Joe Mancuso. That sub pattern suggests UR intends to redshirt Kevin Johnson, a junior who led the Spiders to the 2016 FCS quarterfinals after Lauletta tore his right ACL in the regular-season finale.
Richmond scored 34 points in the second quarter.
The Spiders limited the Bison (1-2) on first and second downs, causing challenging down-anddistance situations for the visitors from the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference. Howard was one of eight on third-down opportunities during the first half. UR was five for five.
The second interception by junior linebacker Dale Matthews set up Richmond at Howard’s 3, and a quick touchdown made the score 34-0 with 8:44 left in the second quarter. UR was up 48-0 when Howard scored with nine seconds left in the first half.
“It’s just a credit to the coaches putting us in those situations in practice,” Matthews said of UR’s defense.
This was the first home game for Russ Huesman, hired as Richmond’s coach in December, and the return to UR of firstyear Howard coach Mike London. London played defensive back for the Spiders 1979-82 and, as a coach, led them to the 2008 FCS championship.
Howard opened the season with a 43-40 win at FBS member UNLV, and Huesman said the result inspired this two-word reaction from him: “Oh, no.” Then the Bison played another FBS team on the road, Kent State, and lost 38-31. In Howard’s third consecutive road game, it wasn’t sharp.
“It’s been challenging, but at the same time, you’ve got to play who you’re playing, and we played a really, really good football team today,” said London. “They dominated a lot of areas. But we are road tested now, we’re road warriors.”
Richmond’s front seven controlled Howard’s running game and forced freshman quarterback Caylin Newton, the brother of Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton, to frequently pass on third-and-long. London replaced Newton after he completed two of 11 passes for 74 yards, with two interceptions. Newton returned a few series later.
Richmond was trying to improve a running game that had been uninspiring, and rushed for 332 yards.
“I’ll give our backs a lot of credit. They made some great cuts, made some people miss, and they ran through some arm tackles,” said Huesman. “And that’s why you get 322 yards rushing in a game.”
Notes: Howard’s visit completes Richmond’s non-CAA schedule. UR opens league competition Saturday at 6 p.m. vs. Elon at Robins Stadium.
The Spiders next season play Virginia, Fordham and St. Francis in nonconference games. … The capacity of Robins Stadium is 8,217, rather than the 8,700 from past years, because of the installation of hospitality tents in the end zones, where temporary bleachers stood during football seasons.