For the third consecutive week, the Alabama State University football team maintained its status as the consensus top-ranked team in Black College Football, and moved up in the FCS Sports Network/Fathead.com Top 25.
The Hornets, 6-1 overall and 6-0 in the Southwestern Athletic Conference for the first time since 2005, are now ranked 19th in the FCS Top 25.
Alabama State is coming off its fifth straight win, a 20-7 defeat Saturday of Prairie View A&M in a possible SWAC Championship preview. The Hornets jumped out to a 17-0 halftime lead en route to their ninth consecutive conference win dating back to last season.
Monday morning, Head Coach Reggie Barlow spoke with the media during the weekly SWAC Coaches Teleconference Monday, looking back on last week's win which kept the Hornets in first place in the SWAC Eastern Division.
"It was a good game. I enjoyed being a part of it," Barlow said of the Prairie View game. "Coach Heishma Northern is doing a good job with his guys. Our coaches thought they have really good schemes defensively, offensive schemes and on special teams and we knew it would be a challenge to control them."
PV came into the game ranked second in the SWAC in scoring offense, but was held to its lowest scoring output of the season. The Hornets forced three turnovers and three missed field goals.
"They were averaging 30 points a game and we knew it would be a tough game, but it was good for our guys to play at home in front of our home crowd," Barlow said. "Our guys came out and played with good energy. We were able to make some plays, get a couple of turnovers and be able to capitalize on them."
For the first time this season, the Hornets have a bye week before returning to play Oct. 29 in the 70th State Farm Magic City Classic. And while Alabama State will not play on Saturday, the Hornets are slated to practice Tuesday morning, Wednesday afternoon, and Thursday morning. Barlow will give his team time to heal bumps and bruises, but still begin preparing for the showdown with the Bulldogs in Birmingham.
"It's just like everyone else around the country," Barlow said. "When you've been going since August 3rd or 4th, now you finally get an opportunity to let these guys rest a little bit and heal. But, we still have to work and we'll be smart about how we do that. We will go back and self scout ourselves and get some of these guys healthy and get ready for the second half of the season."
• The Hornets have won at least six games in SWAC play for the second straight season and the fourth time in the past eight seasons (2004, '05, '10, '11).
• The nine-game SWAC winning streak is the longest by the Hornets since a 10-game winning streak during the 2004-05 seasons.
• With three takeaways against Prairie View, the Hornets have forced at least one turnover in 26 straight games (72 takeaways over that time: 30 fumbles/42 INTs).
• Wide receiver Nick Andrews became number one in receptions in ASU history, surpassing Damon Hodge (176). Andrews now owns the Hornets' receptions (178) and receiving touchdowns mark (26). He needs 108 receiving yards to surpass Barlow (2,536) for the Hornets' career record in that category.
• FS Kejuan Riley moved to sixth in interceptions in ASU history since 1970 with his 14th career interception, sixth in 2011.
• QB Greg Jenkins has accounted for 15 touchdowns this season (nine passing, six rushing).
• Riley and LB Demarques Taylor each made a career high 14 tackles vs. the Panthers.
• LB Marcus Owens made his first career interception in the fourth quarter.