LEWISBURG, Pa. -- The game was barely 3 minutes old yesterday when Towson State wide receiver Ken Weeks broke open at the Bucknell 5-yard line and quarterback Chris Goetz hit him in the hands. It had the makings of a touchdown and a 6-0 lead for the struggling Tigers.
Anybody who has been following Towson football this season shouldn't have to ask what happened.
Weeks dropped the ball, the wind was knocked out of Towson State, and Bucknell joined the crowd that has been abusing the Tigers this season.
The bigger, stronger, more experienced and more talented Bison beat winless Towson, 55-26, in a mismatch that mirrored all of the Tigers' problems this year.
It was the 12th straight road defeat for Towson (0-5) and the first time the Tigers have lost to Bucknell (4-1) in football in four meetings.
The Bison's start is its best since 1972. And, Bucknell has won four straight for the first time since 1978.
Bucknell rolled up a school-record 33 first downs on the way to 568 yards in total offense.
The Bison's 55 points were the second-most scored against Towson in its 21-year football history. Delaware scored 56 against the Tigers in 1984.
Junior tailback Brian Henesey led Bucknell's offense by scoring two touchdowns and rushing for 115 yards.
After the usually sure-handed Weeks dropped the perfect pass from Goetz on fourth-and-11, Bucknell marched 67 yards in eight plays for a 7-0 lead, and the rout was on.
Towson made a small run at the Bison in the second quarter when freshman linebacker George Mohring intercepted a pass by Todd Hatajik and returned it 34 yards to the Bucknell 17.
Five plays later, sophomore tailback Jarrett Grier scored on a 1-yard run to reduce the home team's lead to 21-6 with 9 minutes, 53 seconds left in the second quarter.
Just when Towson received a boost, though, there was more disappointment.
Glen Mattfeld attempted the extra point for Towson, but his kick was partially blocked, leaving the Tigers shaking their heads again.
"We're getting hammered pretty good lately," Tigers coach Phil Albert said. "The dropped pass was a physical error, the blocked extra point was a mental mistake and the blocked punt [leading to Bucknell's second touchdown] was poor execution. When you're not very good, you can't afford to make these mistakes."
Albert exonerated second-year Bucknell coach Lou Maranzana from any responsibility for rolling up the score on the outclassed Tigers.
"It was more our inability to stop them than anything else," said Albert. "They played a lot of people in the second half. They were just too strong for us."
Maranzana said: "Our guys are seniors and have been playing together for four years. Towson is so young on defense that you couldn't expect them to handle our experienced offensive line."
So where does Albert go from here? "I'm looking for anything that can pick us up," he said.
If there is one positive note for the Tigers, the team will play its last six games at home.