Royal A. Shepherd (RoyalShepherdFS on Twitter), Director
TALLAHASSEE, FLA., (www.franchisesportsonline.net) –
Royal A. Shepherd (RoyalShepherdFS on Twitter), Director
TALLAHASSEE, FLA., (www.franchisesportsonline.net) – After a disappointing loss to Jackson State last week, FAMU entered conference play against Savannah State on Saturday. The Rattler offense exploded in the second half to pull out a 31-13 win over the Tigers.
The game was the classic tale of two halves for FAMU. Quarterback Ryan Stanley went 7 of 12 for 37 and two interceptions through the first two periods. The entire offense totaled only 76 yards on 26 plays before the break. He would finish the contest 14 of 20 for 166 yards and added a touchdown pass.
The Rattlers would score 28 of their points after halftime, in large part because of the efforts of redshirt sophomore running back Bishop Bonnett. Bonnett had 94 yards on the ground on nine carries with a rushing touchdown. He added two catches for 70 yards and a receiving score as well, including a 69-yard reception in the third to help jumpstart FAMU’s offense.
Bonnet was awarded the game ball and said he would give it to his daughter. He said his habits made it so that the results were no surprise.
“That’s all I do is work and watch film,” Bonnett said. “I can’t really say that I’m on an emotional high because I expected this. We were supposed to beat them like that.”
FAMU head coach Willie Simmons heaped praise on Bonnett’s work off the field. He said Bonnett doesn’t allow his 5-foot-9-inch frame to stop him from making an impact on the field.
“He is kind of the heartbeat of this football team. He is small in stature but big in heart. He shows that regardless of the situation he comes to work every day and I couldn’t be more proud of him,” Simmons said. “I’m not surprised because I see it every day in practice.”
Redshirt freshman Xavier Smith led the FAMU receiving corps with five catches for 47 yards. Marcus Williams hauled in four passes for 44 yards.
In addition to Bonnett, FAMU running backs Devin Bowers and Deshawn Smith contributed to the Rattlers 186 yards on the ground. Bowers carried the ball eight times for 53 yards and Smith had seven runs for 28 yards and a touchdown.
Punter Chris Faddoul, the conference leader in average yards per punt at 38.2, punted five times for 231 yards and a long of 55 yards. He averaged 46.2 yards per punt on the evening.
Simmons said to have Faddoul on the roster is a huge advantage for the Rattlers. He even put him in the class of some of the collegiate football elites.
“Averaging almost 50 yards a punt, Chris continues to punt at an All-American level,” Simmons said. “He continues to flip the field for us and it’s a huge weapon.”
Savannah State played two quarterbacks throughout the night. TJ Bell threw for 88 yards on 7 of 15 passing with an interception and D’vonn Gibbons went 5 of 13 for 65 yards.
Gibbons led the ground attack for the Tigers with 13 carries for 94 yards. Treveyon Pratt has one reception for 36 yards while D’Andre had three catches for 19 yards.
The Tigers kicked off the game’s scoring on a four-yard touchdown run by JaMichael Baldwin at the 9:15 mark in the first quarter to give SSU a 7-0 lead.
FAMU kicker Yahia Aly got FAMU on the board with a 27-yard field goal with 2:45 left in the second quarter to bring the score to 7-3. It would remain that way going into the half.
Stanley hit Bonnett up the middle seam for a 69-yard touchdown in the third quarter to give the Rattlers their first lead of the game at 10-7.
After forcing the Tigers into a three and out, Smith plowed his way into the endzone from one yard out late in the third quarter to push the Rattlers’ lead to 17-7. Running back Azende Rey added a four-yard touchdown run early in the fourth to increase the lead to 24-7.
With 6:31 left in the game, SSU sophomore running back Jaylen McCloud closed the gap to 24-13 with a two-yard rushing score. FAMU responded less than a minute later with a nine-yard rushing score by Bonnett to push the lead to 31-13.
FAMU will travel to Durham, NC to face conference foe North Carolina Central in a 1 p.m. kickoff.
Royal A. Shepherd (RoyalShepherdFS on Twitter), Director
TALLAHASSEE, FLA., (www.franchisesportsonline.net) – Florida A&M University head football coach Willie Simmons’ calling card has always been his offense. On Saturday, it was the former quarterback’s defense that shined in the Rattlers’ 41-7 win over the Fort Valley State Wildcats in Bragg Memorial Stadium.
FAMU’s defensive unit didn’t allow a single rushing yard from the Wildcat offense on the day. Fort Valley totaled -12 rushing yards in the game and 291 total yards on 55 offensive plays. Five different Wildcats ended the game with negative net yardage in the ground.
Despite this being Simmons’ first game at the helm, the team was clicking on all cylinders. Simmons said he is anxious to see where the team can go after this.
“These guys have worked extremely hard since I got here in December. They’re committed to doing things the right way. They’re committed to transforming this program to another level,” Simmons said. “They say the biggest jump for a team is from week one to week two. So I’m excited to see how big of a jump that we can make now that we have a game under our belt before the game next week.”
Sophomore linebacker Derrick Mayweather led the attack with five total tackles, including one tackle for loss and a sack. Freshman Kendrick Kelly also added five tackles while Senior linebacker Antonio Miller chipped in four tackles and a sack.
The Rattler defense also caused two turnovers and a safety. They forced two fumbles, recovering one, and senior defensive back Orlando McKinley picked off a pass midway through the second quarter.
Mayweather said the performance from the defense started before the game even kicked off. He said this should be the start of how the defense will look to play all season.
“We just wanted to be laser-focused going in. On defense, we knew we had to play our assignments perfectly. Even if we were wrong, we just wanted to play fast to make a play. We tried to fly around every time,” Mayweather said. “We really set a tone to let everyone know that we are here and we are coming.”
Not to be outdone, the Rattler’s new up-tempo offense was on full display in the contest. Redshirt junior quarterback Ryan Stanley was efficient all game until he was replaced late in the fourth with the game well in hand. Stanley finished the night 11-20 for 115 yards and two touchdowns.
“I feel like overall it was a good game. The scoreboard shows 41-7 but there are a lot of missed opportunities that you can’t have against teams like Troy,” Stanley said. “I missed a few throws to Chad [Hunter] tonight early in the first and second quarter. If you miss those opportunities, it could lose you a game. We got the win tonight, so we will enjoy it.”
FAMU (1-0) rushed for 293 yards as a team, led by redshirt sophomore running back Bishop Bonnett’s 81 yards. Redshirt sophomore receiver Azende Rey added 40 yards on one carry and redshirt junior Hans Supre had 37 yards on the ground.
Redshirt freshman receiver Xavier Smith paced the receiving corps with 2 catches for 35 yards and a touchdown. Rey hauled in three passes for 25 yards and redshirt sophomore Ricky Henrilus, in his first game lining up at wideout for the orange and green after converting from running back, caught two balls for 28 yards.
FAMU kicker Yahia Aly converted kicks of 38, 43, 24, 29, 26 and 29 yards to help give the Rattler offense a boost and set the new FAMU record for the number of field goals made in a game with six.
“As I was running out to kickoff after my fifth field goal, I heard the guy talking about the new record. I looked at the time to see if we had time left just to make sure. When I got the chance I executed and I feel very happy about it,” Aly said. “I’m also glad to have my snapper and holder. Without them, I couldn’t have done this.”
Fort Valley senior quarterback Slade Jarman completed 17-27 passes for 303 yards with one touchdown and one interception. Most of Slade’s passes connected with freshman Lorenzo Smothers. Smothers ended the day with six catches for 207 yards.
Henrilus kicked the scoring off with a one-yard touchdown run in the first quarter. Aly connected on his first two kicks in the second quarter to put the Rattlers up two scores. A lightning delay paused the game’s action with 5:05 left in the second and the Rattlers up 13-0.
Fort Valley (0-1) scored on its first possession once play resumed. Jarman found Smothers for a 92-yard touchdown pass, making the score 13-7. It would be the Wildcats only score of the game.
On the Rattlers’ next drive, Stanley found Smith for a 28-yard touchdown pass at the 2:15 mark in the second, his first of the season. FAMU took a 20-7 lead into halftime.
In the third, Stanley threw his second touchdown of the game, a nine-yard strike to redshirt junior receiver Marcus Williams. Aly added his third and fourth field goals before the end of the period.
The final period saw junior defensive back Elijah Daniels add a safety to the Rattlers dominant defensive outing and Aly connect on his fifth and, record-setting sixth field goals.
The Rattlers will travel to Troy, Ala. to take on the Troy Trojans next Saturday at 6 p.m. CST. The game will be broadcast on ESPN Plus.
Stanley Brooks, Correspondent (@StanleyBrooksFS)
In an exhibition game of teams from the Southwestern Athletic Conference vs. the Mid-Atlantic Conference, the Southern University Jaguars (3-3) defeated the Rattlers of Florida A&M University (2-7) 83-71.
Florida A&M head baseball coach Jamey Shouppe believes experience will continue to be a valuable tool for getting his team back to the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference tournament for a second straight title, and hungry to play better in the NCAA Baseball Tournament.
Two seasons ago, Shouppe and his team played in their first MEAC tournament. They didn’t win it, but the experience the players gained was what sparked the Rattlers to coming back this season to win their first MEAC Conference title in 21 years.
“The experience we gained will make our guys not satisfied with just going there showing up,” Shouppe said. “We are going to be hunger this year, and coach to win. And play to win every game we play.”
The FAMU baseball team has won 49 games over the last two seasons, while tallying their most conference wins in a two-year stretch. The Rattlers will be returning over a dozen seniors, who will go into next year’s season ready to be more competitive.
“We have to continue doing what we have done,” Shouppe said. “We have to refine the process. As we continue to set our own bar higher. We have to continue working harder and smarter.”
Shouppe will enter his third season as the Rattlers’ head coach in the upcoming season. He is working on recruiting talent that will be better, and overall improving his baseball program. He will be looking for players that can do the job in the classroom, but also be competitive on the baseball field.
“Pitching. You always have to recruit for pitching,” Shouppe said. “You are not going to win if you do not have pitching. We saw that in the post season. We will continue to look to bring in better arms.”
“We just have to recruit well to continue to build,” he added.
Shoupe was also able to gain experience this past season, which will help moving into next season.
“Obviously, when you play good teams, you see good players,” Shoupe said. “We saw the type player it takes to make it, and win the regional tournament. And, to move on in the NCAA tournament. We saw our strengths, and the guys who get exposed.”
Credit: Florida A&M Sports Information
ORLANDO, Fla. (Sept. 1) – FAMU head coach Earl Holmes won his first contest as the permanent head coach of the Florida A&M Rattlers defeated the Mississippi Valley State Delta Devils 27-10 in the 2013 MEAC-SWAC Challenge presented by Disney. The Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference extends their win streak to five with the victory, here Sunday afternoon at Florida Citrus Bowl in Orlando.
In addition, FAMU has won their third straight contest against Southwestern Athletic Conference member MVSU. The Rattlers faced the Delta Devil, twice before as FAMU defeated MVSU, 10-0 in 1987 and 28-13 in 1990.
This was FAMU’s second appearance in the MEAC-SWAC Challenge, as the Rattlers dropped a 33-27 decision to Southern University in the third MEAC-SWAC Challenge in 2007 at Legion Field in Birmingham, Ala.
Holmes was happy with the effort he saw from his team, but feels they have to solidify the game plan and concentrate on working out the kinks. “The most important thing is to make you biggest improvement between the first and second game. It’s always easier to correct the guys with a win. We did some things well, but there are certainly some things we need to work on. We can now move forward after getting this first win under our belts,” Holmes said.
The Rattlers would be the first to light up the scoreboard as they capitalized on a MVSU punting error as the ball was snapped over the punter╒s head, resulting in a 30-yard loss, giving the FAMU offense the ball on the MVSU 12-yard line.
To introduce our new segment, we enlisted the assistance of MEAC Player Of The Year Antonia Bennett from FAMU. Check out the Blitz Pick-UP!
By Ariel Bedford
JoAnne Graf Field hosted a cross-town showdown, with the FAMU Lady Rattlers Softball team battling the Lady Seminoles as part of a 5-game home stretch for FSU… Continue reading College Softball: #21 FSU 5 – FAMU 3 (Blitz Analysis)
By Ariel Bedford
The FAMU Rattlers were courteous to their opponents in hosting the 2012 FAMU Relays, yet at the same time, rudely dominant in the majority of the events they participated in…
Franchise Sports’ Ariel Bedford has the full report on how the Rattler Track & Field team started off the Outdoor Season strong at home:
Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference: Women’s Basketball
Tallahassee, Fla. (Feb. 29, 2012) The Lady Rattlers will be closing out their season tomorrow afternoon against the Morgan State Lady Bears, who beat the Rattlers last season, 63-54 in the regular season match up.
The Lady Rattlers are currently tied for second in the MEAC standings with Howard at 13-2. The Lady Bears on the other hand are second to last in the MEAC standings with a record of 3-12.