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Florida A&M shuts out Alabama State for first SWAC win

Florida A&M got back in the win column on Saturday night with a shutout win over Alabama State, its first SWAC win.

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. | Florida A&M returned to Bragg Memorial Stadium and shut out Alabama State 28-0. The shutout was the Rattlers’ first shutout of the year and the first one since October 6, 2018, when the Rattlers defeated Norfolk State 17-0.

“It’s a huge win whenever you can shut a team out,” said head coach Willie Simmons. “We came fresh out the gate with a lot of energy and enthusiasm.

“Defensively, we played lights out, and offensively we did what we needed to.”

The Rattlers could not have asked for a better start as they opened the game up with a 6 play, 77-yard drive that finished up with Kamari Young in the end zone. Rasean McKay stood tall in the pocket, took a hit, and delivered the ball on the money to Young. Young broke the tackle and was off to the races, in which nobody would catch him. 

Florida A&M continued to extend the lead as Xavier Smith scored on a 6-yard sweep capping off a 9 play, 42-yard drive. Then, Terrell Jennings would finish a 7 play, 66-yard drive with a 10-yard run, in which he walked into the end zone untouched. 

In the first half, the defense showed their dominance holding the Hornets to no points and allowed only 24-yards, the lowest in a half since 2008 versus Winston-Salem State. Isaiah Land added two sacks in the first half set a new career-high for sacks in a half.

The Rattlers came out of the second half picking up where they left off defensively in the first holding Alabama State to no points forcing a turnover on downs after Derrick Mayweather sacked Ryan Nettles on 4th and 4. 

Land would add another sack and a tackle for loss, giving him a total of three sacks on the day, the most sacks by a Rattler on the season.

Later in the fourth, Kortney Cox recorded his first career interception extending the Rattlers turnovers forced streak to 14 consecutive games. The interception would set up a 9-yard touchdown run for Bishop Bonnett to give the Rattlers a 28-0 lead.

The defense finished upholding the Hornets to 197 total yards while recording four sacks and one interception.

Florida A&M returns to Bragg Stadium next Saturday, October 9, at 6 p.m.

Florida A&M shuts out Alabama State for first SWAC win
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