Glass Throws For DI Program Record 446 Yards, Four TDs as Alabama A&M Falls 37-28 at Grambling

GRAMBLING, La. – A record-setting passing attack was offset by five turnovers as Alabama A&M (3-1, 1-1 SWAC) dropped a 37-28 decision at Grambling (2-3, 1-1 SWAC) in an NCAA Division I football game on Saturday, October 2.
 
THE STATS – ALABAMA A&M
Graduate quarterback Aqeel Glass (St. Louis, Mo.) threw for an NCAA Division I Era program record 446 yards, going 36-of-62 with four touchdowns but also four interceptions to lead the Bulldog attack. That passing total surpassed his own previous mark of 440 set this spring at Jackson State on April 10.
 
Three of those four TDs would go to senior wideout Dee Anderson (Dallas, Texas) – all from eight yards out – as part of a five-catch, 64-yard day while junior wide receiver Odieu Hilaire (Belle Glade, Fla.) hauled in 10 balls for 161 yards and a score. Not far behind him was fellow junior Abdul-Fatai Ibrahim (Miramar, Fla.) with 10 grabs and 133 yards.
 
On a day that was not conducive to the ground attack, senior running back Gary Quarles (Cottondale, Ala.) carried 14 times for 59 yards for a 4.2 average and a long of 17 to round out the top offensive performances.
 
Defensively, graduate linebacker Armoni Holloway (Pinson, Ala.) had six tackles, three solo, a sack and 1.5 tackles for loss while sophomore defensive end Phillip Hopkins (Montgomery, Ala.) had a sack, TFL and five tackles.
 
Senior linebacker Branden Bailey (Deerfield Beach, Fla.) led the way with seven tackles and junior safety Trenell Troutman (Orlando, Fla.) added six stops – three by himself – and 1.5 TFLs. Junior defensive tackle Jamal Irby (Mobile, Ala.) chipped in with a pick late to keep A&M in the game and sophomore punter Troy Lendvay (Montreal, Quebec, Canada) kicked three times for 126 yards for an average of 42.0 on the day with a long of 54 yards.
 
THE GAME
The Bulldogs wasted no time going to work with their high-powered offense as Glass hit Hilaire and Ibrahim on 17- and 26-yard completions, respectively, as they drove 87 yards over 11 plays. That game opening series went just 3:11 and was capped off with an eight-yard strike to Anderson for his fourth touchdown in a five quarter span.
 
Holding that 7-0 lead, A&M’s defense stepped up and delivered a three-and-out on GSU’s first possession, handing the ball right back to their offense. The ensuing drive would stall at the Tigers’ 13-yard line before a missed kick from 30-yards out would begin a set of two unfulfilled drives for both clubs.
 
That stretch would take the game to the second quarter and see the Bulldogs driving. Back-to-back grabs of 21- and 11-yards by Ibrahim brought the ball down to the Grambling eight-yard line. From there, history would repeat itself as Glass connected once again with Anderson to extend to a 14-0 lead by the 13:15 mark.
 
At that point, however, things would change drastically as the Tigers found the offense – fueled by the defense – that had been lacking all season as they scored 24 straight points over the remainder of the second period.
 
That barrage would begin following a Brendan Vaughn interception that set GSU up at the A&M 40-yard line. From there, Noah Bodden covered those 40 yards in five plays, capping it off with a 13-yard touchdown pass to Tony Forrest at the 7:58 mark to cut the deficit in half.
 
The Tigers would then convert on an onside kick on the ensuing kickoff, recovering at the Bulldogs’ 15-yard line. Following an 11-yard sack by Armoni Holloway that brought up an unmanageable 3rd and 17, an incompletion brought out Grambling’s Garrett Urban, who would convert on a 39-yarder to pull to within 14-10 just 1:32 later.
 
A&M’s next drive would last just two plays as Quincy Mitchell stepped in front of a Glass pass and returned it 11 yards to the A&M 15-yard line. Bodden and GSU would take full advantage as the possession lasted all of one play, that a 15-yard rifle to Dorrell James, flipping the script and putting the Tigers up 17-14.
 
Grambling’s defense would continue to wreak havoc and set the offense up with short fields, this time as defensive lineman Sundiata Anderson forced a fumble on the second play of the Bulldogs’ next drive. That would be picked up by Cameron Richardson who would take it 21-yards for the scoop-and-score and a 24-14 lead at the 4:38 mark.
 
Alabama A&M would move the ball on their next possession, going 37 yards in eight plays before seeing the drive extinguished on a 4th and 4 attempt that came up a yard shy with 1:45 on the clock. GSU would do no better their final time having the ball as time ran out on them at their own 44-yard line, sending the teams to the half with that 10-point margin.
 
Following a pair of unsuccessful drives for both clubs over the first 10-plus minutes of the second half it would be the Tigers that would find their offense. That would come in the form of a 60-yard connection from Bodden to Kobe Ross on a 2nd and 5 to extend the lead to 31-14 with 3:35 showing on the clock.
 
Danquarian Fields would then squelch the Bulldogs’ next drive with an interception at the A&M 45-yard line that he would run back 16-yards. That positioned GSU at the 29-yard line but three plays later they would be left with a 46-yard field goal attempt – one that would go wide left and leave them with nothing to show for the effort.
 
Taking over with 41 seconds left in the frame, two incompletions, a sack and a penalty would set up a 4th and 8. The ensuing incompletion then put the Tigers at the A&M 31-yard line but seven plays and 21 yards later they would only be able to manage a 27-yard field goal to push to a 34-14 advantage.
 
A&M would then get off the deck as they took possession with 11:31 remaining and flashed the offense that has torched many a defense. This time it would be the Glass and Hilaire show as they opened with a 15-yard connection from their own 19-yard line before rifling a 66-yard touchdown two plays later to cut it to 34-21 in a span of just 38 seconds.
 
Back within striking distance but with a long way to go and short time to get there, the Bulldogs’ defense stepped up and forced a three-and-out to get the ball back at their own 20-yard line with 9:09 to play.
 
A&M would work their way 80 yards with a methodical 13-play drive that would see a pair of pickups on 3rd and 5. They would top that, however, as Glass came through on a 4th and 5 to laser a ball to Anderson, once again from eight yards out, cutting the deficit to just six points, 34-28.
 
With 3:38 having gone off the clock on that drive, GSU took over with 5:25 left and chewed up nearly another three minutes in bringing the ball to the Bulldogs’ 10-yard line. On third down, Bodden dropped back to pass only to find Irby waiting to pick off his pass attempt and simultaneously end the threat and give A&M new life with 2:28 to play.
 
It would be short-lived, however, as Richardson returned the favor on the other side of the ball, picking off Glass on his first attempt and bringing it back three yards to the 17-yard line. They would take off 1:37 before Urban drilled a 27-yard field goal to make it a two-score game, 37-28, with 43 seconds remaining.
 
The Bulldogs would go 40 yards in that time, including a 28-yard completion to Anderson, but it would be to no avail as a nine-point spread and a ticking clock were too much to overcome.
 
THE STATS – GRAMBLING
Bodden led the Tigers on offense with a 16-of-34 passing day that saw him finish with 191 yards, three touchdowns and a pick while Darque Brutton produced 82 yards on 22 carries. Ross led the receiving corps with four catches for 81 yards and a touchdown and James and Forrest each added solo scores.
 
Despite 37 points on the board and 28 allowed, the driving force on the day was a GSU defense that forced five turnovers setting up short fields. Richardson snagged one of four interceptions and ran back a fumble recovery for a score while Vaughn, Fields and Mitchell each had key picks.
 
Up front, the defensive line did damage with four sacks for 24 yards as Anderson notched two to go with his 2.5 TFLs and three tackles. He was joined by Koby Foster and Lane Lewis with a sack apiece and Reyondo Estes and Devani Martin were the tackle leaders with six and five, respectively.
 
Urban delivered an impressive day on the special teams front, converting three-of-four field goals (39, 27, 27) with his only miss from 46-yards, and landing two of his six punts (198 yards, 33.0) inside the 20-yard line.
 
UP NEXT
Alabama A&M returns home after more than a month of games on the road as they take on Jackson State on Saturday, October 9. That game will serve as Homecoming and will kick off at 2 p.m. at Louis Crews Stadium.
 
NOTES
The loss snaps a nine-game win streak that dates back to November 23, 2019. Prior to the 30-13 win over Mississippi Valley State that began that stretch, the Bulldogs’ last loss was a narrow 34-28 defeat at the hands of Alcorn State on November 16, 2019.
 

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