TSU was poised to finish off its first defensive drive with a three-and-out but on 3rd-and-3, Grambling’s Geremy Hickbottom broke free for a 73-yard touchdown run and a 7-0 lead after the PAT with 13:41 left in the first quarter. TSU answered with an explosive 31-yard reception from DeAndre Johnson to Donnie Corley on the first offensive play of its drive but the drive would stall as they were forced to punt. Grambling State would add to its lead on its second drive as Hickbottom found a streaking Lyndon Rash for a 38-yard scoring strike and a 14-0 lead following Miguel Mendez’s PAT.
The Tigers had a promising second offensive drive stall thanks to back-to-back penalties and a sack. GSU only needed three plays to move ahead by three scores as Hickbottom once again broke free for a 59-yard run and a 21-0 lead. Hickbottom completed a 50-yard reception late in the first quarter to set up another GSU score and a 28-0 lead to open the second quarter. TSU would get on the board not too long after as Johnson and Corley connected on a 35-yard touchdown reception. However, Grambling State answered back with a nine-play, 49-yard drive to move ahead 34-6 and never looked back despite a pair of touchdowns from TSU in the second and third quarters.
TSU finished with a season-high 637 yards of offense as Johnson passed for 351 yards on 21-of-40 passing while rushing for 133 yards on 21 carries. Donnie Corley finished with 11 receptions for 170 yards. Michael Badejo led all TSU defenders with 10 tackles.
The Tigers are back at home next Saturday as they’ll host Alabama State at BBVA Stadium for Senior Day at 2 p.m.