BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) — Quincy Crittendon scored on a 25-yard run in the second overtime and Samford defeated Mercer 50-44 on Saturday for the Bulldogs’ first outright conference title in 86 years.
No. 9 FCS Samford’s 10-1 record matches the 1991 team for the best regular-season record in school history. The Bulldogs, who clinched at least a tie for the SoCon title last week, last won an outright conference championship in 1936 when then-Howard College won the Dixie Conference with a 5-3-1 record.
After Samford (8-0 Southern Conference) and Mercer (No. 16 FCS, 8-4, 5-3) scored touchdowns on their first overtime possessions, Mercer missed a field goal to open the second overtime. Crittendon ended it on the second play of Samford’s possession.
Samford’s Michael Hiers completed 43 of 55 passes for 454 yards with four touchdowns.
Fred Payton was 30-of-51 passing for 514 yards with two touchdowns and an interception for Mercer. Ty James caught 13 passes for an astounding 351 yards, just 25 yards shy of the FCS single-game record.