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September 2, 2010MOUNT PLEASANT -- The first shutout in a season opener since 1979 highlighted the start of the Dan Enos era for Central Michigan football in a 33-0 decision over Hampton University at Kelly/Shorts Stadium on Thursday.
The Chippewas (1-0) scored 16 first-quarter points on their way to a 23-0 halftime lead, holding the Pirates (0-1) to just 34 total yards in the first half.
Paris Cotton ran for a career-best 94 yards and a touchdown and Ryan Radcliff completed 20-of-34 passes for 242 yards and a touchdown. Cody Wilson caught four passes for 47 yards and a score to lead CMU through the air.
David LeGree was 12-for-34 for 80 yards and was intercepted once for the Pirates. Steve Robinson led their ground attack with 67 yards and Isiah Thomas caught four passes for 33 yards to pace the arial assault for HU.
The last time CMU shut out an opponent in the season opener came against Western Michigan at Kelly/Shorts Stadium, 10-0, on Sept. 8, 1979. The Chippewas finished 1979 at 10-0-1, 8-0-1 in the MAC for their first division I conference title.
Central Michigan returns to action on Sept. 9, at Temple.
Head Coach Dan Enos
On the game...
"We won and that was our entire goal the entire offseason, was to win the game. We weren't happy with how we played in all phases of the game, but we were very happy with our effort and our attention to detail. We challenged our players before the game, knowing we had a lot of guys in new spots, knowing we had a lot guys who hadn't played football in a long time. We stressed to those guys that they were going to make mistakes but not to worry about it if they did, just play the next play and that we just wanted to see them get better."
On the Defense and Special Teams...
"Defensively we played very well. Our defense was swarming and were all over the place. On special teams we challenged our kids all week that we should make a difference. We spent a lot of time in special teams and we thought we made a huge impact with the game today."
On the Offense...
"Offensively we were opportunistic at times and then again fluttered around at times. We knew Ryan was going to be hyped up, but we really thought he got into a rhythm in the second half and settled in and made some big throws."
On Ryan Radcliff's First Career Start...
"In the 2nd half, Ryan did a better job of throwing the underneath stuff. It was just about him settling into the game a little bit. One thing you would have like to seen was the wideouts making some spectactular catches for him in his first start and that didn't happen, but I know those guys are going to get better too."
On Cody Wilson's Performance...
"Cody Wilson was a huge bright spot for us today. We've seen it as a staff since we arrived in the spring and I've been saying that guy is a good football player. He has a chance to be an outstanding football player."
On Paris Cotton's Career Day...
"Paris Cotton was a guy that to me in the 2nd half was a different guy. We were trying to feed him the ball, either through handing it to him or throwing it to him. We think him and Carl Volny can be very good players as well."
On Defensive Ends Joe Kinville and Ceasar Rodriguez...
"They did very well. Ceasar is a guy that has a lot of ability and we've been hoping that he was going to keep maturing. Joe Kinville wasn't even on our team, or in the program. It was in the middle of January and this kid comes walking into my office and says, 'Hey coach, I'm Joe can I be on the football team?' And he's our starting defensive end today. Joe Kinville is 245-250 pounds, he was a linebacker and he had never played defensive line before and we challenged him. The guy is tough and a worker, a very good high school player out of Catholic Central and a very good high school wrestler. You win with guys like Joe. He's gonna do it the right way. He's gonna be tough and he's going to give effort every play."
On Atmosphere on the Sidelines...
"Our guys were getting a little frustrated because they knew there were plays out there and that they had left some plays out there. The thing is we didn't want to compound it by getting them more frustrated, so we were trying to be positive and encouraging them. Luckily our defense was able to keep getting the ball back and that's not going to happen ever game. When we started to get some explosive plays and put together some drives in the second half they started to feel better."
On importance of running game...
"We are going to have to run the ball. Even if you have a good quarterback, if you can't run the ball and you become one dimensional it's very, very hard on offenses these days. We're going to have run the ball the entire year so we're going to have to manufacture different ways to do it. Paris and Carl are two guys we are very comfortable with right now. Paris Cotton is a guy who had a good spring and an outstanding summer camp so it was no surprise to our coaches and staff that he looked as explosive as he did tonight and we will look to continue to get him better and better and better."
On the Offensive Line and Running backss running more I-Formation sets...
"We think by being multiple like that is going to help us throughout the season and help us as an offense. To get into different personal groupings and make defensives line up against all those looks every week and be able to run a different set of plays out of multipe sets is gonna be beneficial for our offense. We will continue to develop both of those offensive sets."
On first points at CMU...
"They loosened me up and I thought 'at least we're not getting shut out.' I thought it was appropriate because of the way the defense played today. It was a good start. It was a good thing to get up on the board early."