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College Sports: Harris rushes for 337 yards

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posted on Sep, 5 2004 @ 12:27 PM
Kay-Jay Harris rushed for a school-record 337 yards and four touchdowns to lead No. 10 West Virginia to a 56-23 victory over East Carolina on Saturday night.

Harris broke the school record of 291 yards set by Kerry Marbury in 1971 against Temple. It also was a Big East record, eclipsing the mark of 299 set by Miami's Edgerrin James in 1998 against UCLA.

Jason Colson added two scores as West Virginia's platoon rushing attack continued the Mountaineers' recent dominance of East Carolina in the opener for both teams.

The Mountaineers compiled 478 yards on the ground. In the two previous seasons, they ran for 361 and a Big East-record 536 against the Pirates.

Harris was slowed by various leg injuries during preseason camp and there were doubts about whether he could a streak of eight straight seasons of 1,000-yard rushers for West Virginia.

West Virginia coach Rich Rodriguez had questioned Harris' durability and named Colson the starter late in the week.

Harris, who entered the game on the third play, answered the challenge by running for 223 yards by halftime.

He set the records midway through the fourth quarter, breaking a tackle and going 76 yards up the left sideline for his fourth score. His others came from 2, 5 and 51 yards in the first half.

West Virginia made the game a rout with three touchdowns in a 2:27 span of the second quarter, including Adam Jones' 76-yard punt return sandwiched around two Harris TDs.

Half of West Virginia's eight touchdowns were 50 yards or longer.

Chris Henry, a 1,000-yard receiver last year, made up for two first-half personal foul penalties by catching a 60-yard TD pass from Rasheed Marshall on the first series of the second half.

West Virginia had nearly as many yards in penalties (141) as passing (143).

East Carolina sputtered at times under first-year offensive coordinator Noah Brindise, an assistant under Steve Spurrier at Florida and with the Washington Redskins.

James Pinkney was 26-of-51 for 322 yards and three scores in his fourth career start. But he was intercepted twice, and 1,000-yard backs Marvin Townes and Art Brown were held to a combined 36 yards rushing.

East Carolina has lost 12 straight nonconference games.


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