tampabay.com

History in triplicate for star rusher

Andre Hall scores three times and breaks three USF records.

By DENIS GORMAN
Published November 13, 2005


SYRACUSE, N.Y. - Saturday had to be one of the best days of Andre Hall's life.

On the same field where his hero Jim Brown was among the players feted, Hall ran over Syracuse and the USF record books. The senior running back rushed for 222 yards and three touchdowns and set three school records in USF's 27-0 win over the Orange.

Hall set USF's career mark in rushing yards (2,345) and rushing touchdowns (23). He also set the school record for rushing touchdowns in a season with 12, breaking the record of 11 he set last season.

The last time a running back rushed for 200 yards against the Orange was Oklahoma's De'Mond Parker in 1997.

It was his second-best career day for yardage; only his school-record 275-yard game against UAB on Nov. 3, 2004, was better. It was also the second best rushing game in the Big East this season, behind Syracuse's Damian Rhodes, who gained 236 against Buffalo. Hall leads the conference in rushing, with 988 yards.

"It's all right," Hall said, laughing. "I give all the credit to my big boys up front."

On USF's second drive, three plays after safety Johnnie Jones' interception of quarterback Joe Fields, Hall scored on a 4-yard touchdown for a 10-0 lead.

But Hall's signature play came late in the second half. Facing second and 25 from USF's 6-yard line, Hall busted a 34-yard run down the left sideline for a first down. USF capped the drive on Kyle Bronson's 22-yard field goal.

"After that, I felt they gave us a little more room to run," Hall said. "That's when I noticed they switched their defense; they weren't coming in from the edge as hard."

Syracuse might not have been attacking as hard, but Hall continued his assault on the Orange; he had four runs of 30 yards or more.

USF coach Jim Leavitt appreciated his star running back's effort.

"Andre Hall is a good football player; he makes a lot of good things happen," Leavitt said.

He might not appreciate a third quarter Hall highlight, though. After a 33-yard touchdown run to make the score 20-0, Hall said he struck a pose in the end zone, drawing a 15-yard unsportsmanlike conduct penalty. Hall expects to face some tough love from Leavitt.

"I did a little pose, it was nothing major," Hall said. "I guess I have to pay my dues come Monday."

In the past, Hall has said Brown was one of his idols.

"I didn't get to see him," Hall said of Brown, attending as part of Syracuse's ceremony to retire his No. 44.

It's a good bet Brown and Syracuse won't forget Andre Hall.