UNA and ASU ranked #1 in their conferences

Two more teams from the state of Alabama have risen to the top of the rankings.
      North Alabama is the new No. 1 team in NCAA Division II, taking over the top spot after Northwest Missouri State lost to Pittsburg State last week. Meanwhile, Alabama State has been voted the top-ranked team in Black College Football by four different polls. The Hornets moved up following losses by South Carolina State and Bethune-Cookman.
      They follow Alabama and Auburn, who won the past two Football Bowl Subdivision national titles.
      UNA (5-0) began the season ranked No. 6, but received a boost following a 23-17 victory over then third-ranked Abilene Christian on Sept. 17. The Lions last topped the national poll in 2009.
      "I still believe it doesn't mean a whole lot being No. 1 this early in the season," UNA coach Terry Bowden said. "But I would just as soon fight the rest of this battle from No. 1 as from No. 2."
      Alabama State is off to a 4-1 start for the first time since 2007, and is 4-0 in the Southwestern Athletic Conference for the first time since 2005. The Hornets' only loss this season was by seven points to FBS team Eastern Michigan.
      "The players are excited about where they are ranked and happy about it," ASU coach Reggie Barlow said. "But we have a mature group and we're not going to celebrate. It's a great accomplishment, but I'm just not really big into that type of thing at this point in the season."
       North Alabama at Arkansas Tech, 6 p.m.
      North Alabama has an eight-game winning streak in the series with Arkansas Tech dating to 1999, including three victories in Russellville, Ark. The Lions shut out Tech last year 28-0.
      UNA is coming off a 42-14 victory over Southern Arkansas. The Lions trailed 14-0 just before halftime, then scored touchdowns on five of their next six possessions. UNA had 318 yards in total offense in the second half, while holding Southern Arkansas to 43 yards.
      Arkansas Tech (1-4) has allowed an average of 35 points per game during its current three-game losing streak. That is almost exactly the average number of points UNA has scored this season (34.4.).
       Alabama State at Texas Southern, 1 p.m.
      Alabama State will be looking for a different result in this rematch of last year's SWAC championship game. The Hornets lost to Texas Southern 11-6 in the 2010 title game, and also were beaten by the Tigers 21-7 during the regular season.
      "We dropped two to these guys last year, so we're excited about the opportunity to change the fate on that," Barlow said. "Hopefully our guys will not need any extra motivation from us this week, as Texas Southern did beat us twice last year."
      ASU is the only team still undefeated in SWAC play following last week's 31-23 victory over Alcorn State. Quarterback Greg Jenkins passed for 299 yards and three touchdowns and rushed for 59 yards and a score in begin named the SWAC offensive player of the week.
      Texas Southern (2-2, 1-2) is coming off a 58-13 loss to Jackson State.
       Alabama A&M vs. Mississippi Valley State, 1 p.m.
      Alabama A&M (3-2, 2-1 SWAC) is on a three-game winning streak for the first time since 2007. The Bulldogs needed a 20-point, fourth-quarter comeback to win their third in a row, edging Arkansas Pine-Bluff 28-27 after trailing 27-7.
      "The guys played with the spirit of a team that wanted to win the football game," A&M coach Anthony Jones said. "When UAPB went up 27-7 our character came out."
      The Bulldogs have a good chance to keep their winning streak going this week against winless Mississippi Valley State (0-5, 0-4). The Delta Devils have lost their five games by an average score of 38-16, though they are coming off their closest game of the season (28-21 against Southern).
       Samford at Furman, 12:30 p.m.
      Samford (2-2, 0-2 Southern Conference) hopes to put together a different ending in its series with Furman (3-1, 2-0), which has won three consecutive games against the Bulldogs with two of them coming down to the final play.
      "If we do our part, it will be another close game," Samford coach Pat Sullivan said. "They are a good football team with a lot of experienced players, and they're playing with a lot of enthusiasm. Hopefully we'll continue to get better."
      Both teams scored in the 40s last week. Samford defeated Gardner-Webb 41-14, while Furman beat Western Carolina 47-21.
       South Alabama at Texas-San Antonio, 4:30 p.m.
      After two consecutive losses to FBS opponents, South Alabama (2-2) takes a step back to play another team that is new to college football.
      Texas-San Antonio (2-3) is in its first season of competition. The Roadrunners, who are led by former Miami coach Larry Coker, began the season with a 31-3 victory over Northeastern State, but have lost three of four since.
      "They are a very hungry football team," South Alabama coach Joey Jones said. "They remind me of us a couple of years ago, the way we came out that first year with a lot of hunger and excitement."
       Stillman vs. Benedict, 5 p.m.
      Stillman (4-1, 3-0 SIAC) has won three in a row and opened up a 1½-game lead in the West Division of the SIAC. The Tigers currently are the only team in the SIAC with three conference victories.
      The Tigers have allowed an average of only 16.2 points per game in their four victories. They are led by defensive end Shawn Lincoln and linebacker Larry Harris, who combined for 20 tackles in last week's victory over Lane.
      Benedict (1-4, 0-2) lost in overtime to Miles last week in the debut of new head coach James Woody.
       Miles at Clark Atlanta, 12:30 p.m.
      Miles (2-3, 1-1 SIAC) could be in for a defensive struggle against Clark Atlanta (2-3, 1-1), which has the lowest-scoring offense in the conference but the second-stingiest scoring defense.
      Clark has allowed an average of 18.8 points per game this season and has held three opponents to a touchdown or less. But the Panthers have scored an average of 10.6 points per game and have managed a total of only nine points in losing their past two games.
      Miles is coming off an emotional 20-14 victory over Benedict. The Golden Bears scored a touchdown and a two-point conversion to tie the game with a minute left in regulation, then won in overtime.
       Tuskegee vs. Morehouse College in Columbus, Ga., 1 p.m.
      Any momentum Tuskegee has from picking up its first victory of the season will be put to the test against SIAC East Division co-leader Morehouse.
      The Golden Tigers (1-3, 1-1 SIAC) ended their worst start to a season in 16 years with an 18-15 victory over Fort Valley State last week.
      "It's a great relief," Tuskegee coach Willie Slater said. "We needed it desperately. We're excited about it, but we're still going through growing pains."
      Morehouse (4-1, 2-0), which is on a three-game winning streak, leads the SIAC in scoring defense (15.4 points per game) and is second in scoring offense (35.6 ppg).
       West Alabama vs. Southern Arkansas, 5 p.m.
      West Alabama (4-1) looks to expand on its current four-game winning streak against a Southern Arkansas team that has lost three in a row.
      This will be the fourth home game in the past five weeks for the Tigers, who have not lost since a season-opening setback to South Alabama.
      Southern Arkansas (1-4) has struggled this season primarily because of turnovers. The Muleriders have committed 12 turnovers while forcing only four.

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