By ADD SEYMOUR JR.
Malcolm Bell threw for 184 yards and a touchdown and ran for 131 yards and two more TDs as North Carolina Central defeated rival North Carolina A&T 42-21 in their regular season finale, giving the Eagles the MEAC championship and sending them to the Air Force Reserve Celebration Bowl.
The win was the 15th straight MEAC victory for North Carolina Central (9-2, 8-0 MEAC) while North Carolina A&T (9-2, 7-1 MEAC) finishes the regular season with their third consecutive season of nine or more wins.
After Dorrel McClain's 15-yard TD run early in the first quarter, North Carolina Central never looked back. NCCU led by as many as 28 points, after McClain's second TD run early in the fourth quarter made it 35-7. McClain finished with 109 yards and three touchdowns rushing the nation's fifth-ranked run defense.
Defensively, North Carolina Central shut down North Carolina A&T's star running back, Tarik Cohen, only allowing him 82 yards rushing and one TD on the day. The Aggies averaged just 3.6 yards a rush, while Central averaged 7.1. A&T was outgained 454 yards to 328 and didn't score until the third quarter.
"We didn't look like ourselves today," said North Carolina A&T Head Coach Rod Broadway. "I thought we were prepared. I thought we were ready, but we just made too many mistakes today. That team today had on our uniforms, but they were not who we have been all year."
The Aggies were without injured starting quarterback Lamar Raynard for the second straight week.
Auburn 55, Alabama A&M 0
Southern 55, Mississippi Valley State 0
Grambling 47, Texas Southern 28
Prairie View A&M 57, Arkansas-Pine Bluff 7
Alcorn State 36, Jackson State 16
Army 60, Morgan State 3 - Army (6-5) had three players who rushed for at least 100 yards as they piled up 505 yards on the ground to crush Morgan State (2-8, 2-5 MEAC). Andy Davidson rushed for 111 yards and two TDs, Cole Macek ran for 108 yards and two touchdowns and Darnell Woolfolk had 104 and on TD for Army. Defensively, Army limited Morgan State to eight first downs and 28 yards rushing. Army also had five sacks.
Norfolk State 17, Hampton 10
Howard 26, Delaware State 21
South Carolina State 32, Savannah State 0
Bethune-Cookman 39, Florida A&M 19
Tennessee State 32, Southeast Missouri 31 - Ronald Butler's 14-yard touchdown pass to Patrick Smith lifted Tennessee State (7-4, 4-3 OVC) to a season-ending win over Southeast Missouri (3-8, 3-5 OVC). Butler's early fourth quarter TD toss to Smith gave TSU a 25-10 lead, but SEMO got a touchdown run, a 2-point conversion and a field goal in the fourth quarter to seemingly put the game away. But Butler drove the Tigers downfield in the last 2:48 of the game to lead TSU to the win.