Unbeaten N.C. A&T is chasing excellence
By CRAIG HALEY
(STATS) - Whenever North Carolina A&T loses a game, coach Rod Broadway basically finds only one way for it to be acceptable - that the other team earns the win as opposed to the Aggies beating themselves.
To prevent that from happening, Broadway and his coaching staff stress to their team about stopping an opponent's run game and with having an advantage in turnovers.
Considering how well the Aggies are achieving those goals this season, it's not surprising the No. 15-ranked team has the best record in the FCS at 6-0 (none of the other six unbeatens have played as many games). They're also tied atop the MEAC standings with rival North Carolina Central, with both winning their first three conference games.
"We want to be excellent every play," Broadway said. "I'm not talking about wins and losses, I'm just talking about how you play this game and how you go about trying to achieve greatness. I think you achieve greatness by chasing greatness, I think you achieve excellence by chasing excellence.
"We need to chase it and, hopefully, that will bring out something from within which makes us play better."
N.C. A&T is allowing 72.8 rushing yards per game, the eighth-lowest average in the FCS. The Aggies also are tied for the fewest rushing touchdowns allowed, surrendering just one while playing one more game than the other team, Kennesaw State.
The stout defense teams with an outstanding offense, led by the nation's most efficient quarterback, Lamar Raynard. The Aggies are tied for second nationally in turnover margin at plus-12.
Coming off a Homecoming blowout of winless Delaware State, N.C. A&T is Florida A&M's Homecoming opponent on Saturday. The Aggies will then host Bethune-Cookman on Oct. 21 before getting a week's rest prior to the November stretch run.
The only unbeaten seasons in program history had smaller schedules than today - 8-0 in 1927 and 4-0 in 1943. This year's unbeaten start includes the Aggies' second all-time win against an FBS program - 35-31 over Charlotte.
"We've got a couple more games before we get to bye week, but we're going to keep grinding," Broadway said. "We're starting to get a couple people back now. We need to get to bye so we can get a couple more guys back. The guys are hanging in there and giving us a pretty good effort and they're focused right now."
Updated October 11, 2017