JSU makes statement, silences Grambling in blowout win in home opener

Jackson State safety John Huggings (6) pushes through Grambling State defense during the second...
Jackson State safety John Huggings (6) pushes through Grambling State defense during the second half of an NCAA college football game in Jackson, Miss., Saturday, Sept. 17, 2022. (Barbara Gauntt/The Clarion-Ledger via AP)(Associated Press)
Published: Sep. 18, 2022 at 3:31 PM CDT
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JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - The Jackson State University Tigers make a huge statement in an overwhelming win over the Grambling State Tigers in the W.C. Gordon Classic on Saturday afternoon at “the vet.”

Thee JSU Tigers’ home opening contest did not disappoint, with the home fans and Sonic Boom of the South creating an electrifying atmosphere. Dominantly taming another Tigers squad in back-to-back weeks, the Tigers of the capital city are putting the nation on notice - if they weren’t already watching.

After not scoring a touchdown until the final moments of last week’s matchup against Tennessee State, the offense scored early, pounding home a 1-yard touchdown run from star quarterback, Shedeur Sanders.

In the closing stages of the first quarter, Jackson State running back Sy’veon Wilkerson, who has emerged as the top back, scored a physical 3-yard touchdown with thirty-six seconds left in the first quarter.

The normally stout JSU defense, who had not allowed a touchdown all season, surrendered their first end zone score of the year as Grambling State running back Maurice Washington broke free for a 73-yard touchdown to end the first trailing 14-7.

The G-Men scored another quick touchdown to start the second quarter, which tied the ball game at 14 a piece. JSU dealt well with the pressure of a tight score as Shedeur Sanders connected with Dallas Daniels on a 23-yard touchdown toss to stretch the lead 21-14.

Grambling Head Coach Hue Jackson’s NFL coaching experience looked to be coming to fruition for the traditionally great G-Men, keeping the game uncomfortably close for the uber-talented #11 JSU Tigers, who led 21-17 at halftime. However, Jackson State came out firing after the halftime whistle.

JSU outscored Grambling 45-7 in the second half, proving to be the new king of the jungle. It’s clear that Coach Prime preaches dominance as the Tigers won big, just like he said they would, winning 66-24 over the fellow HBCU powerhouse.

Despite the dominating second-half performance from the home Tigers, Coach Sanders was not pleased with the first-half display, calling for more consistency from the offense.

“I just want one of these games to be complete,” Coach Sanders said during his postgame press conference. “For the offense... the first game was complete, the second game was lackadaisical, the first half [of this game] of lackadaisical, then we got it together. But, we got the W... that’s what’s important.”

Shedeur Sanders completed 21 of 31 pass attempts, throwing for 357 yards and 6 total touchdowns. Running back Sy’veon Wilkerson carried the rock 23 times and rushed for 141 yards on the ground for JSU.

Wide receivers Willie Gaines and Dallas Daniels led the explosive receiving core, with Gaines racking up 89 yards and a touchdown on 2 catches and Daniels scoring 3 touchdowns with 5 grabs and 85 yards.

Linebacker Aubrey Miller led the aggressive JSU defense with nine tackles.

Coach Sanders and the undefeated JSU Tigers will host the struggling Mississippi Valley State Delta Devils on Saturday, September 24, at 1 p.m.

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