No. 9 JSU edges past Campbell in historic homecoming weekend

Jackson State running back Sy'veon Wilkerson (36) runs upfield past a Campbell defender during...
Jackson State running back Sy'veon Wilkerson (36) runs upfield past a Campbell defender during the first half of an NCAA college football game in Jackson, Miss., Saturday, Oct. 22, 2022. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis)(Rogelio V. Solis | AP)
Published: Oct. 23, 2022 at 3:31 PM CDT
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JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - The undefeated No. 9 Jackson State Tigers downed the Campbell Fighting Camels in front of a packed-out Veterans Memorial Stadium crowd to flex their best start to a season since 1983 on a historic homecoming weekend.

Head Coach Deion Sanders has Jackson State University at the center of college football.

The Vet housed 51,596 fans, by far the most this season, with celebrity rappers Snoop Dogg and Rick Ross in the building to experience the homecoming festivities in the capital city. From Coach Prime and his football team to the Sonic Boom, the homecoming weekend was truly special, including some performances on the gridiron.

After beginning last week’s contest on the front foot against Bethune-Cookman, the Tigers resorted back to their old ways and started the game sluggish against Campbell.

The Fighting Camels led Jackson State after the first quarter and Heisman candidate quarterback Shedeur Sanders and the JSU offense failed to register a touchdown in the first half of the game.

The #1 FCS Tigers’ defense, however, did what they’ve done all season and contained the well-coached Fighting Camels to just seven points to keep Jackson State leading 9-7 at halftime.

“The [Fighting] Camels are well-coached. They were physical and they were tough,” Coach Prime said during the postgame press conference. “They knew what they were doing and didn’t make any mistakes, and we did... some costly mistakes. [Both teams] played a heck of a game. Hats off to Coach Minter and that whole program. What he’s built there is phenomenal.”

Sanders would notch his only touchdown of the day in the third quarter with a 48-yard pass to tight end D.J. Stevens to increase their lead 15-7. The aggressive Jackson State defense held Campbell scoreless in the third period.

Tigers’ running Sy’Veon Wilkerson rushed home a 4-yard run to score JSU’s last points of the game late in the fourth quarter. Jackson State’s defense surrendered a late touchdown with 30 seconds left to play. However, it was too late as the Tigers beat Campbell 22-14.

NFL-caliber middle linebacker Aubrey Miller Jr. was sensational on Saturday for the Tigers as he recorded 13 tackles and a sack.

Kicker Alejandro Mata converted 4 field goals while Wilkerson rushed for 116 yards and a touchdown.

ESPN’s College Gameday will be coming to Jackson on Saturday, October 29 for the first time in Jackson State’s history. The Tigers will host Southern University that Saturday at the Vet, with kick-off slated for 1 p.m. The game between the two rivals will be aired on ESPN Plus.

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