1. North Carolina A&T (7-2, 4-1): Amid all the GHOE hype, the Aggies showed why–when healthy–they are the most dangerous team in the MEAC with a 40-21 win over FAMU. As long as QB Kwashuan Quick stays healthy, they look like the team to beat down the stretch.
2. Bethune-Cookman (6-2, 3-1): Saturday’s 20-14 loss to SC State took BCU from sitting alone atop the conference to rolling with a pack of 3-1 teams.
3. Grambling State (5-3, 5-0): Grambling sat out this week, so we’ll see whether or not they come out rusty on the road against a solid Texas Southern team this week.
4. Alcorn State (7-2, 5-1): There are two ways to look at Saturday’s win against Prarie View. From an offensive standpoint, scoring 71 points is ridiculous. From a defensive standpoint, giving up 48 points is ridiculous.
5. South Carolina State (5-3, 3-1): After coming so close in 2013, SC State was finally able to knock off Bethune-Cookman. Now it must try to win out and hope for some help from North Carolina A&T to win the conference title.
6. Southern (5-3, 4-1): Southern’s 42-28 win over JSU last week keeps it one game behind rival Grambling in the SWAC West race.
7. Morgan State (4-4, 3-1): Morgan suffered a 48-28 loss in a late-season non-conference game, but is still in the thick of the MEAC race.
8. Texas Southern (5-3, 3-3): TSU’s 38-37 loss to Arkansas-Pine Bluff was its third loss in four games. Things aren’t going to get any easier with back-to-back games against Grambling and Southern.
9. Alabama State (4-4, 3-3): ASU’s 37-36 loss to Alabama A&M in the Magic City Classic appears to have dealt a fatal blow to it’s SWAC East title hopes.
10. North Carolina Central (4-4, 3-1): A week after a crushing fourth-quarter loss, NCCU rebounded for an easy 42-21 win over Savannah State.
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The second annual Deacon Jones Trophy will be awarded in Feb. 2018.
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Amir Hall not satisfied despite monumental early success.