State football: Nichols tops 2K yards in Central Michigan win over Ball State

Associated Press

Muncie, Ind. — Lew Nichols III ran for three scores and 219 yards and Central Michigan piled up 567 yards of offense and beat Ball State 37-17 on Wednesday night.

Nichols topped 2,000-career rushing yards when he ran for 131 yards in the first half against the Cardinals.

Central Michigan running back Lew Nichols III was the nation's leading rusher in 2021.

After a 7-7 first quarter, Nichols scored on runs of 2 and 66 yards sandwiched around a 50-yard end-around by Kalil Pempleton.

Just before halftime, Drew Plitt led a 14-play, 81-yard drive for Ball State that ended with a 6-yard scoring pass to Yo’Heinz Tyler which reduced the Cardinals' deficit to 28-17.

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Midway through the third, however, Central Michigan (7-4, 5-2 Mid-American Conference) put it out of reach when Nichols carried it in from the 1 finishing an eight-play, 55-yard drive.

Plitt threw for 170 yards for Ball State (5-6, 3-4).