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Rattlers dominate Wildcats in Florida Classic to win 9th straight

Florida A&M 41, Bethune-Cookman 20
Rattlers dominate Wildcats in Florida Classic to win 9th straight
Posted at 8:59 PM, Nov 19, 2022

ORLANDO, Fla. (FAMU ATHLETICS) — Five different players reached the end zone, led by two scores from Jaylen McCloud, as Florida A&M handily beat Bethune-Cookman 41-20 on Saturday afternoon inside Camping World Stadium.

The Rattlers improved to 9-2 on the year and 7-1 in Southwestern Athletic Conference play, while the BCU fell to 2-9 and 2-6.

Rattlers dominate Wildcats in Florida Classic to win 9th straight

Jeremy Moussa led Florida A&M's passing attack with 195 yards through the air, tossing two touchdowns without throwing an interception.

McCloud led all FAMU rushers with 26 yards and two touchdowns in the contest. A.J. Davis also added 15 yards on the ground, averaging 5 yards per carry.

Moussa's most prolific target in the ballgame was David Manigo, who caught five passes for 78 yards. Xavier Smith got in on the action in the passing game as well, hauling in five balls for 73 yards and one touchdown.

Anthony Dunn Jr led the Florida A&M defensive effort, recording six tackles, 4.0 TFL, three sacks, one forced fumble, and one recovered fumble. Isaiah Major added eight tackles, 3.0 TFL, and 2.5 sacks and Javan Morgan had five tackles, one interception, and two pass breakups in the win.

The Rattlers won the turnover battle in Saturday's game, forcing two turnovers while avoiding any giveways, with Florida A&M turning those takeaways into two touchdowns. Florida A&M converted on 44.4 percent of third-down attempts on the day. The Rattlers also went 1-for-1 on fourth down on a fake punt pass from Chris Faddoul to Jeremiah Pruitte.

Florida A&M's defense held up against Bethune-Cookman's offense, giving up 284 total yards. The Dark Cloud Defense took up residence in Bethune-Cookman's backfield all game, piling up seven sacks and 14 total tackles for loss.

Florida A&M's offense made the most of its trips to the red zone, scoring on four of its four trips, with all of those scores being touchdowns.

Florida A&M grabbed a 6-0 lead over Bethune-Cookman after scoring the game's first points with 9:57 left in the first quarter. The Rattlers then followed with another score to increase the lead to 13-0.

Florida A&M continued to expand its advantage after Bethune-Cookman made it a 13-7 game, scoring again with 11:10 remaining in the second quarter to go up 20-7.The Rattlers continued to extend their lead, scoring again to go up 27-7.

Florida A&M continued to expand its lead after Bethune-Cookman made it a 27-20 game, scoring again with 10:11 left in the fourth quarter make the score 34-20.The Rattlers kept scoring, tacking on a touchdown to increase their advantage to 41-20. Neither team scored again in the game.

» Bethune-Cookman outgained Florida A&M 284-282 in the contest.
» Florida A&M won the turnover battle 2-0 after intercepting one pass and recovering one fumble.
» The Rattlers scored first with 9:57 remaining in the first quarter and never trailed the rest of the game on their way to victory.
» Florida A&M had their highest scoring quarter in the fourth period, when they put up 14 points.
» Florida A&M converted 4 of 9 third downs while Bethune-Cookman was successful on 7 of 14.
» Major led the Rattlers with eight tackles.
» Florida A&M went 1-for-1 on fourth down, converting on 100 percent of attempts.
» The Rattlers collected 14 tackles for loss and added seven sacks.
» The Rattlers ended the game on a high note, scoring 14 unanswered points to close out the contest.
» Moussa completed 78.9% of his passes on the day, going 15-for-19 while averaging 10.3 yards per attempt.
» Xavier Smith threw his first career touchdown on a 24-yard double pass from Moussa to Smith, then Smith to Moussa, which was the first time two players threw a touchdown to each other in the same game in FAMU history
» The Rattlers had a completion by four different players: Jeremy Moussa, Jacory Jordan, Xavier Smith, and Chris Faddoul
» Anthony Dunn Jr. and Isaiah Major set career-highs in sacks with 2.5 each
» Jaylen McCloud, Terrell Jennings, and Xavier Smith scored in back-to-back Florida Classic games.
» Xavier Smith eclipsed the 1,000 yard receiving mark for the second time in his career.

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