JONESBORO, Ark. (9/5/09) – Senior tailback Reggie Arnold rushed for 126 yards and four touchdowns and senior quarterback Corey Leonard became the Arkansas State all-time yardage leader as the Red Wolves rolled to 61-0 victory over the Mississippi Valley State Delta Devils in the season opener Saturday night at ASU Stadium.
Leonard passed for 129 yards and a touchdown and rushed for seven more to finish the night with 7,433 career yards, surpassing Cleo Lemon's mark of 7,309 set from 1997-2000.
Arkansas State piled up 496 yards on the night while holding the Delta Devils to 69 yards of total offense. The shutout was the Red Wolves' first since a 3-0 overtime victory over Florida Atlantic during the 2005 season.
"We did what we needed to do, we came out and got a victory," said ASU head coach Steve Roberts. "I was very proud of the preparation of our young men, coming out and taking care of business. We got to play a lot of people tonight and got sloppy towards the end on special teams, but I thought our offense and defense continued to play well. We got a lot of guys on scout team who never get an opportunity to play, and we rewarded them by letting them play in the 3rd and 4th quarters."
"We had a great crowd and great fan support and I was very pleased to come up with a victory," Roberts added. "I think it was real obvious defensively that we controlled the game with our front seven. I thought our offensive line did a great job, especially against some of their bigger lineman."
The Red Wolves led 20-0 at the end of the first quarter, getting on the board with a 3-yard touchdown run from Arnold with 9:38 remaining in the period. Arnold found the end zone again on a 20-yard run just over five minutes later, and freshman tailback Don Jones scored on a 25-yard pass from Leonard to wrap up the scoring in the opening quarter.
Sophomore tailback Derek Lawson scored from 15-yards out midway through the second quarter to extend the Arkansas State lead to 27-0. Arnold added a 26-yard touchdown run and Jones scored from 12 yards out to complete the first-half scoring and give the Red Wolves a 40-0 advantage at the break.
Arnold added a two-yard touchdown run early in the third quarter and freshman quarterback Ryan Aplin scored on a 1-yard run later in the period to put the Red Wolves up 54-0 heading into the final quarter.
Sophomore fullback Jermaine Robertson scored on a two-yard run early in the fourth quarter and senior placekicker Josh Arauco added his seventh extra point to set the final score at 61-0.
Junior linebacker Javon McKinnon led the ASU defense with five tackles and one forced fumble. Twenty-six players on the Arkansas State defense recorded tackles in the game, with 10 of those players recording tackles for loss.
Next up for the Red Wolves is a Sept. 12 trip to Lincoln, Neb. to take on the 24th-ranked Nebraska Cornhuskers in a 1:00 p.m. game at .