Morehouse goes on the defensive

Saturday’s games

Savannah State at Akron, noon

University of God’s Chosen at Point, noon

Rhodes at Berry, 1 p.m.

College of DuPage at Georgia Military, 1 p.m.

Shorter at Kennesaw State, 1 p.m.

Reinhardt at Georgetown (Ky.), 1:30 p.m.

Fayetteville State at West Georgia, 2 p.m.

Fort Valley State at Clark Atlanta, 2 p.m.

Cumberland at Valdosta State, 4 p.m.

The Citadel at Georgia Southern, 6 p.m.

Ave Maria at LaGrange, 6 p.m.

Sillman at Albany State, 7 p.m.

Johnson C. Smith at Morehouse, 7 p.m.

Mercer at Tennessee Tech, 7 p.m.

Rich Freeman likes the way his defense is playing, even though Morehouse gave up 29 points in a loss last week.

The Maroon Tigers (1-1) allowed only one touchdown in regulation to Arkansas-Pine Bluff, a FCS program, before the Golden Lions scored in each of the three overtimes for a 29-27 victory.

“My guess, they brought us there for an easy victory, but we took them to three overtimes,” Freeman said. “They didn’t get what they were looking for and I don’t anticipate them calling us anytime soon.”

And in Morehouse’s 51-7 opening win, Edward Waters’ only touchdown came on a 50-yard fumble recovery.

The Maroon Tigers are No. 1 in the SIAC in total defense (224 yards) and against the pass (96.5 yards).

Morehouse’s defensive tackle rotation of Robert Davis, Austin Clark (South Gwinnett) and Brandon Ketchup (Evans) has controlled the line of scrimmage, allowing the defensive ends and linebackers to roam.

“That’s close to 1,000 pounds with those three,” Freeman said.

Defensive end Voris Bryant (Mount de Sales) has two sacks and four tackles for loss, and linebacker James Woods (Southwest DeKalb) has 12 tackles.

Freeman also credited Chris Hambie (Decatur), a three-year starter at linebacker, freshman Antonio Johnson and junior-college transfer Kimlyn Teague.

Austin Benton (Tucker) is tied for the SIAC lead with two interceptions and fellow cornerback Emmanuel Parks (Mt. Zion-Jonesboro) returned a pick 76 yards for a touchdown.

“The points we allowed (Saturday) aren’t indicative of the type of defense we’ve played,” Freeman said.

Injuries to starting receivers Devon Mann (Newton) and Lake McGuffie (Our Lady of Mercy) have slowed the offense, but freshman Amyr Smith (Grady) caught three touchdown passes against Arkansas-Pine Bluff.

“If we get more of a team effort and more cohesion offensively, this could be a special year,” Freeman said.

Etc.: Reinhardt (2-0), which leads the NAIA in rushing offense (391 yards) and is No. 2 in scoring (62.5 points) and total offense (652 yards), is tied at No. 24 in the coaches poll. … Berry's Mitchell Blanchard (Collins Hill) was selected to the team of the week after he averaged 41.3 yards on seven punts and kicked three field goals in a 16-13 overtime win over LaGrange. … West Georgia, which moved to No. 2 in the American Football Coaches Division II poll, ranks fifth in the country in total defense with 180 yards per game. … Point's Brandon Robertson (Dutchtown) is The Sun Conference's special-teams player of the week for his game-winning 46-yard punt return in the Skyhawks' 36-33 win over Pikeville. He's second in the NAIA with 636 all-purpose yards and tied for fourth with five touchdowns.