* Southern Conference game
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• Saturday’s slate is the first of the season to feature exclusively Southern Conference games, as four league contests are on the schedule and Wofford is on its bye. Preseason SoCon favorite and 17th-ranked Samford visits Chattanooga in a crucial early season tilt, as the Bulldogs look to avoid the 0-2 league start.
• Mercer picked up a signature win Saturday when it downed then-No. 9 Samford 30-24 on the road. The Bears held the high-octane Bulldogs to just 424 yards of total offense, more than 100 yards below their season average of 541 entering the contest. The win was Mercer’s third over a ranked FCS opponent in the last two seasons, as the Bears knocked off No. 17 The Citadel and No. 22 Western Carolina last year.
• Chattanooga improved to 3-0 with a 34-24 win at UT Martin on Saturday. Quarterback Nick Tiano was an efficient 20-for-24 for 208 yards and two touchdowns, while running back Tyrell Price ran for 118 yards and two scores on 22 carries.
• Two SoCon teams are nationally ranked this week. Wofford moved up a spot into a tie for sixth in the AFCA FCS Coaches’ Top 25 and remained No. 8 in the STATS FCS Top 25, while Samford dropped to No. 17 in both polls. Mercer, Chattanooga and Western Carolina are receiving votes in both polls, while Furman is also receiving votes in the STATS poll.
• Wofford nearly nabbed the SoCon’s first win over an FBS program since 2015, leading Wyoming in the final minute of the contest Saturday before the Cowboys escaped with a touchdown with 17 seconds left for the 17-14 win.
• Samford quarterback Devlin Hodges was 30-for-41 for 291 yards against Mercer on Saturday, becoming just the second player in league history to surpass 1,000 career completions. With 1,016 to his credit now, he trails only Elon’s Scott Riddle, who had 1,168 from 2007-10. Hodges, who also ran for 38 yards Saturday, assumed sole possession of the SoCon’s career record for games of 300 yards of total offense (25), breaking a tie for first with SoCon Hall of Famer Armanti Edwards of Appalachian State (2006-09).
• Furman’s Grayson Atkins and Wofford’s Luke Carter have the eighth-best and ninth-best consecutive PAT conversion streaks in league history, respectively. Atkins has converted all 57 of his career attempts so far, while Carter his connected on all 56 of his.
• VMI sophomore quarterback Reece Udinski turned in the first 300-yard game of his collegiate career on Friday, throwing for 305 yards in the Keydets’ 27-24 loss to ETSU.
• Conversely, ETSU held VMI to minus-28 rushing yards, tied for the fourth-fewest by a SoCon team in a game in league history. The Bucs totaled 8.0 sacks for 52 yards, notching 11.0 tackles for loss for 55 yards total on the day. ETSU had an all-around impressive day on defense, as it also intercepted five passes and forced and recovered a fumble.
• Western Carolina quarterback Tyrie Adams went over the century mark with both his feet and his arm in the Catamounts’ 28-10 win at Gardner-Webb on Friday. The redshirt junior ran for 106 yards on 12 carries and threw for 108 yards and two touchdowns. Teammate and running back Connell Young, a converted wide receiver, ran for 105 yards and a score and caught six passes for 66 yards and a TD.