Mississippi football roundup: Jackson State clinches SWAC East title, Alcorn and Delta State win with defense

Published 10:46 pm Saturday, November 12, 2022

MOBILE, Ala. — The SWAC Championship Game is coming back to Jackson.

Shedeur Sanders had four touchdown passes and undefeated Jackson State beat Alabama A&M 27-13 on Saturday at the Gulf Coast Challenge to earn the Southwestern Athletic Conference Eastern Division championship for the second season in a row.

Jackson State (10-0, 7-0 SWAC) will host the SWAC Championship Game on Dec. 3 at Veterans Memorial Stadium. It finishes the regular season next weekend at Alcorn State.

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Alabama A&M (3-7, 3-4) had a 10-7 lead after the first quarter before Sanders threw touchdown passes of 19 yards to D.J. Stevens and 35 yards to Shane Hooks for a 21-10 halftime lead.

Travis Hunter gave the Tigers their first touchdown after taking a pitch-pass from Sanders and going around the right end for a 20-yard score. Sanders added a 21-yard touchdown pass to Willie Gaines in the third quarter.

Hunter also had an interception on defense.

The Bulldogs’ scores came on Donovan Eaglin’s 1-yard run and two Victor Barbosa field goals.

Alcorn State 17, Bethune-Cookman 14
Andrew Smith’s 50-yard interception return for a touchdown late in the fourth quarter allowed Alcorn State (5-5, 4-3 SWAC) to defeat visiting Bethune-Cookman (2-8, 2-5).

Alcorn committed four turnovers, but turned the tables with one of its own. Wildcats quarterback Jalon Jones threw a pass towards the sideline that was picked off by Smith and returned 50 yards for the go-ahead score with 4:39 remaining.
Alcorn forced five turnovers in all.

On offense, Jarveon Howard led the Braves with 129 rushing yards and a touchdown. Quarterback Tre Lawrence was 5-of-13 passing for just 35 yards, and was sacked four times.

Jones was 22-of-34 for 228 yards and a touchdown for Bethune-Cookman, and also scored a rushing touchdown.
Alcorn won its second game in a row following a three-game losing streak. It will finish the season on Nov. 19, at home against Jackson State at 2 p.m. The game will be streamed on ESPN+.

Southern U. 27, Mississippi Valley State 7
Glendon McDaniel completed 11 of 16 passes for 113 yards and two touchdowns, and also ran for 60 yards and a TD to lead Southern University (6-4, 4-3) past Mississippi Valley State (1-9, 1-6).

McDaniel was one of three quarterbacks, along with Besean McCray and Harold Blood, that Southern used. They combined to go 15-of-22 for 240 yards and three TDs. The Jaguars built a 27-0 lead early in the third quarter.

Jakobe Thomas ran for 77 yards and scored Valley’s only touchdown on a 5-yard run midway through the third quarter.

Delta St. 17, West Alabama 7
Kelvin Smith caught a touchdown pass and ran for another score as Delta State grinded out a win over West Alabama (5-6, 3-5 Gulf South Conference) in its regular-season finale Saturday.

Smith caught a 24-yard TD pass from Patrick Shegog in the first quarter, and then ran for a 3-yard score in the third. Smith finished with 66 total yards — 30 rushing and 36 receiving — on an underwhelming offensive day for Delta State (10-1, 7-1).

The Statesmen totaled just 254 yards, but their defense forced four turnovers. Linebacker Christian Gomez had 11 total tackles and recovered two fumbles.

West Florida 56, Mississippi College 21
Peewee Jarrett accounted for six touchdowns — four passing and two rushing — as West Florida (9-1, 6-1 Gulf South Conference) routed Mississippi College (4-7, 3-4).

Jarrett completed 9 of 11 passes for 246 yards and four touchdowns, while running for 26 yards and a pair of short touchdowns. Jarrett’s 43-yard touchdown pass to Caden Leggett with 5:38 left in the second quarter put the Argos ahead 28-7, and Mississippi College never got closer than two touchdowns again.

Mississippi College ran for 283 yards as a team. Devlen Woods had 84 yards and a touchdown on 23 carries, Cole Fagan had a team-high 88 yards, and Marcus Williams added 61 yards and a touchdown.

The Choctaws finished the season on a four-game losing streak.

Maryville 25, Belhaven 22
Bryson Rollins threw a 20-yard touchdown pass to Corey Russell with 4:21 left in the game to give Maryville College (5-5, 5-2 USA SOuth) a win over Belhaven (8-2, 6-2) in the season finale for the Blazers.

Rollins was 27-of-41 passing for 373 yards and three touchdowns. Russell caught five passes for 86 yards and two TDs, and Kevon Samuels had 11 receptions for 181 yards and one score.

Kolbe Blunt ran for 140 yards and two touchdowns for Belhaven, which set a program record with eight wins this season.

Centre College 57, Millsaps 3
Centre College (6-4, 4-3 Southern Athletic Association) scored on an interception return, kickoff return and safety while piling up 43 points in the first half, and ended a dismal season for Millsaps (3-7, 2-5) with a blowout.

Millsaps’ only points came on a 34-yard field goal by Ethan Klapatch with 5:04 left in the second quarter. Centre’s Greer Stone returned the ensuing kickoff 79 yards for a touchdown to make the score 36-3.

Stone also caught an 18-yard touchdown pass in the first quarter.

Millsaps lost its last five games of the season and was outscored 225-17 during the losing streak. It allowed 50 points or more in each of its last three games.