The Alcorn State Braves overwhelmed the Grambling State Tigers in Indianapolis, and beat the Tigers 48-0. On paper, this was Grambling’s worst performance of the year. Alcorn set the tone of the game early by blocking a Grambling punt on the first drive.
“Started the game off again this week, with a blocked punt,” said George Ragsdale. “That kind of put us behind the eight ball.”
Alcorn’s quarterback John Gibbs went 18 of 37 for 254 with one touchdown. Alcorn rushed for 292 yards, led by Arnold Walker who rushed for 110 yards and two touchdowns.
Grambling’s defense gave up over 500 yards of total offense for the fifth time this year. Despite the numbers, Ragsdale still believes the defense played well.
“A lot of times your offense put your defense in bad situations” said Ragsdale. “A bunch of those yards are at the end of the game, you know when teams are up on us by 34-0 in the fourth quarter.”
Offensively, the Tigers struggled to get anything going all game. Quarterback D.J. Williams went just 6 of 20 for 30 yards passing in the game. The receivers dropped a few passes.
“DJ plays his butt off, but he cannot throw the football and catch it too,” Ragsdale said. “You can’t not pay your bills two months in a row, or someone will come knock on your door, you know you drop this ball out here two games in a row and coach Rags is going to knock on your door.”
The Tigers only converted on one third down, and totaled just 162 yards of offense.
The bright spot in the Tigers’ offense was the rushing game. Jestin Kelly lead all Grambling rushers with 99 rushing yards on 23 carries. Ragsdale was pleased with the running game.
“Kelly running that thing like it was nobody’s business man, running through people, over people” Ragsdale said.
Next week the Tigers will travel to Mississippi Veterans Memorial Stadium and face-off with SWAC rival Jackson State (5-2 5-0 SWAC) at 2 p.m.
This is a big rivalry game for Grambling, and it has been for decades. Last year Jackson State beat the Tigers 53-17 in Eddie Robinson Stadium.
Ragsdale has been trying to keep the team positive all season with his energy.
“Here goes somebody that is 5-0, if you are a real man, a real football player, wouldn’t it be great to beat them!” Ragsdale said.