HUNTSVILLE, Ala. — Alabama A&M (5-3, 3-3 SWAC) rolled up 577 yards of offense and senior wideout Dee Anderson (Dallas, Texas) tied for the national lead in receiving touchdowns in a 42-14 victory over Mississippi Valley State (2-7, 1-5 SWAC) in an NCAA Division I football game on Saturday, November 6.
THE STATS - ALABAMA A&M
Anderson came into the day with eight receiving touchdowns and ranked sixth in the country and promptly caught seven balls for 122 yards, coming down with three of them in the endzone.
That stretched his season total to 11, tying him after the day's action for the NCAA Division I Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) national lead. He finds himself tied with Jalyn Witcher of Presbyterian, Taylor Grimes of Incarnate Word and Fordham's Fotis Kokosioulis.
He would be far from the only Bulldog showing out on the day, however, as graduate wide receiver Zabrian Moore (Tuscaloosa, Ala.) caught three balls for a whopping 133 yards and junior wide receiver Odieu Hilaire (Belle Glade, Fla.) brought in three for 20 yards and a score but surpassed that with a 48-yard touchdown strike to Anderson. Sophomore tight end Bryson Clark (Delray Beach, Fla.) added a TD and junior wideout Abdul-Fatai Ibrahim (Miramar, Fla.) finished with seven catches for 78 yards.
Not to be left out, the ground game churned up 172 yards, a career-high 76 of that coming from junior running back Harold Jemison, Jr. (Nashville, Tenn.) on just five attempts while senior running back Gary Quarles (Cottondale, Ala.) added 56 yards and a TD on 14 totes.
Not to be left out, the defense was led by graduate cornerback Amari Holloway (Pinson, Ala.) with a game-high 10 tackles, nine solo, and redshirt-junior safety Jonathan Struggs (Montgomery, Ala.) with eight stops, five on his own. Graduate safety Trenton McGhee (Jacksonville, Fla.) added six tackles and a forced fumble and redshirt-junior defensive tackle Dreyvione Carter (New Market, Ala.) had a sack and forced fumble.
After forcing a three-and-out on the opening MVSU possession, the Bulldogs wasted no time going 73 yards in five plays as Glass hit Ibrahim three times for a combined 30 yards. The big blow, however, was a 48-yard strike downfield from Hilaire to No. 11 Anderson who barreled into the endzone for a 7-0 lead, fittingly, at the 11:11 mark.
The Delta Devils responded right away with a methodical 10-play, 75-yard march over the next 4:51 featuring a 25-yard run from Caleb Johnson and culminating with a nine-yard touchdown run by quarterback Jalani Eason. That evened the score at 7-7 by the 6:15 mark.
MVSU would get the ball right back, however, as the second play of the ensuing A&M drive would result in a forced fumble by Keonte' Daniels and recovery by William Morgan. They would not be able to capitalize, however, as an 11-play drive went just 25 yards and burned 5:44 off the clock.
Alabama A&M would then answer with a mammoth drive that started at their own one-yard line and would span 13 plays and 99 yards in 4:47. That final play would have a familiar finish as Anderson hauled in a seven-yard score to tie for the FCS national lead and put the Bulldogs up 14-7 at the 9:52 mark of the second quarter.
Mississippi Valley State would then see their next drive end abruptly after seven plays as graduate safety Trenton McGhee (Jacksonville, Fla.) forced a fumble and the Bulldogs fell on it in the endzone for a touchback. From there it would be all A&M.
A six play, 80-yard drive over the next 2:57 would then feature a career-long 57-yard run by Jemison and once again be capped by Anderson, this time with an 11-yard TD to put him in the national lead and A&M up 21-7 with 3:46 on the clock.
Valley would manage just 11 yards on five plays before the Bulldogs were right back at it, taking the ball from their own 19-yard line to paydirt in just five plays and 1:05. The big play in that drive would be Moore hauling in a 39-yard catch, taking the ball to the MVSU 20-yard line before Clark snagged a touchdown ball from eight yards out with 40 seconds left.
Even with taking that 28-7 lead to the break, Alabama A&M would not rest on their laurels as Glass and company put together another extremely long drive, this time 11 plays and 93 yards. Once again Moore would factor prominently with a 48-yard catch to flip the field and setup another scoring drive. This time it would be a four-yard rifle to Hilaire to extend the lead to 28 points just 4:38 into the third quarter.
The teams would then see three fruitless drives, two by the Delta Devils, before A&M put it together once again as Quarles ran it in from one yard out to punctuate an eight play, 67-yard possession that left the score at 42-7. MVSU then marched down the field, covering 65 yards in 12 plays and just under five and a half minutes to cut it to what would be the final margin of 42-14 on a touchdown grab by Jacory Rankin with 7:39 on the clock. From there they would salt away the 28-point victory.