FAMU prepares to get it on with Howard in the Celebration Bowl

Courtesy of Florida A&M Athletics

ATLANTA, Ga. –– Rattlers’ historic season is ending Saturday afternoon as they make their first appearance in the Celebration Bowl and look to cap off the season by bringing a Celebration Bowl trophy to Tallahassee.
When, Where, How to Watch/Listen, Digital Program: 
When: Saturday, December 16, 12 p.m. Eastern
Where: Mercedes-Benz Stadium
Watch: ABC
Listen: Florida A&M Rattlers app or Rattlers+
Digital Program
Coaches in the game
Willie Simmons (Clemson, 2002 | The Citadel, 2003) 
Career Record: 65-24 (9th season, 2020 canceled due to COVID-19)
Record at FAMU: 44-13 (6th Season 2020 canceled due to COVID-19)
Larry Scott (USF, 2000) 
Career Record: 18-23 (5th season) 
Record at HU: 14-21 (4th season)  
Overall: FAMU leads 29(27)-11 (two wins vacated in 2010 and ’14) 
First Meeting: FAMU won 9-6 (1933)
Last Meeting: FAMU won 39-7 (2019)
Streak: FAMU, 1
The Rattlers continue to show to have one of the best defenses in the nation as they’re ranked in the top 25 in 12 categories: turnovers gained (24), passing yards allowed (11), passes intercepted (12), red zone defense (8), sacks (6), rushing defense (5), defensive touchdowns (4), pass efficiency defense (2), scoring defense (2), 3rd down defense (2), total defense (2), and tackles for loss (1). 
The Rattlers possess the best defensive player in the SWAC, as Isaiah Major won SWAC Defensive Player of the Year. They also possess the best offensive player in the SWAC, as Jeremy Moussa won SWAC Offensive Player of the Year. The Rattlers also had a league-high 13 All-SWAC selections, the most by any team since joining the league in 2021.
The Rattlers enter the game on a ten-game winning streak, currently the second longest in the nation (South Dakota State, 26), and a three-game winning streak at a neutral site after winning the last two Florida Classics and the Orange Blossom Classic this year.
The Rattlers will also look for their rushing attack to spark the offense as Howard has struggled to slow down the run this season, ranked 101st in rushing defense. The Rattlers also come into the game on a six-game streak rushing over 100 yards, including two 200-plus yard games during that span. The Rattlers have run over 100 yards nine times, including three 200-plus yard games. Another reason the Rattlers will look to lean on their rushing attack is because Howard has the nation’s number-one pass defense.
The Bison enter the game with the nation’s number-one pass defense, with a significant reason being the MEAC Defensive Player of the Year, Kenny Gallop, leading the defensive backs. The Bison also enter the game with the nation’s 21st total defense and 30th scoring defense. 
Offensively, the Bison emphasize running the ball as they have two 500-plus yard rushers (Jarrett Hunter, 602, and Eden James, 572), with their quarterback also being a threat to run the ball. James has also been a big-play threat, ranked 26th in the nation, averaging 5.78 yards per carry. Their emphasis on rushing has allowed them to possess the nation’s 24th-best rushing attack. The Bison have also been great at taking care of the ball, turning the ball over only four times this season, the fourth-best in the nation.

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