The Bison (5-18, 2-7 Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference) trailed throughout the first half and didn't take the lead until a 3-pointer with 6:19 left by Tre Lee, his only basket of the game, made it 42-39.
After trailing 37-30, Howard scored 20 of the next 23 points, including eight by Phillips. The Bulldogs (4-17, 0-8), who have lost 14 in a row, shot 18.5 percent (5 of 27) in the second half. Their last win over a conference opponent came in the 2011 MEAC tournament against Delaware State.
Okoroh had 10 rebounds and Phillips nine for Howard, and Lee had seven assists.
Darryl Palmer scored 11 points for South Carolina State.
Former Kentucky guard Ed Davender, the only Wildcat with at least 1,500 points and 400 assists, has died. He was 49.
Guard Naz Mitrou-Long, whose 2015-16 season ended in December due to hip problems, has been granted a hardship waiver for the coming season, Iowa State said.
As the Sooners look to life without superstar Buddy Hield and his sidekicks, it's clear their unseasoned players will need to grow up fast.
|South Carolina State||12-4||1||19-15|
|North Carolina Central||7-9||6||13-19|
|North Carolina A&T||7-9||6||10-22|