QB Leads JMU To 32-7 Win Over URI
Posted: September 22, 2012
KINGSTON, R.I. — Facing a Rhode Island team determined to keep James Madison from doing what it does best — run — JMU coach Mickey Matthews was certain the Dukes would have to pass to win.
“We knew we had to throw it,” Matthews said. “And, when we realized that they were stacked in there so much to stop the run — which is what I would have done, too, because it was successful last year.”
Not so much this time.
JMU quarterback Justin Thorpe had a career day, throwing for 340 yards and two touchdowns, while the defense limited URI to just 183 yards of offense, as Madison won its Colonial Athletic Association opener 32-7 on Saturday in front of 4,203 fans at Meade Stadium.
“Yeah, the numbers say that, but I still made a couple of mistakes I wish I could take back,” said Thorpe, who threw two interceptions and ran for 40 yards on 13 carries. “My receivers did a great job of just going and getting yards, and the [offensive line] did a heck of a job just blocking everybody up front.”
Thorpe completed 26 or 40 passes, both career highs. Previously, he completed 21 of 38 last season against North Dakota State. The 340 yards also were a career high, surpassing his 262-yard performance against Delaware in 2009.
The fifth-year senior also connected on several deep balls — something he hadn’t been doing this season. Saturday, Thorpe hit on five passes of 20 yards or more, capping the day with a 37-yarder to a wide-open Renard Robinson in the end zone that made it 32-7 with 10:44 left in the game.
“I was thrilled we finally completed a deep pass,” Matthews said. “The other guys that don’t cover us — we’ve had guys open the whole year and we haven’t been able to complete a deep pass.”