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HBCU football rankings after Week 11: Jackson State still No. 1, Florida A&M picks up big win

Here’s how we ranked all 21 HBCU football teams in Division I FCS after Week 11 of the season, along with a summary of how each team fared.

PREVIOUS RANKINGS: Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4 | Week 5 | Week 6 | Week 7 | Week 8 | Week 9 | Week 10

1. Jackson State (10-0, 7-0 SWAC)

Deion Sanders' team is officially headed back to the SWAC title game. It wasn't done in the prettiest fashion, but the Tigers clinched an East Division title with a 27-13 win over Alabama A&M. JSU will close out its regular season at Alcorn State.

Last week's ranking: No. 1

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2. Florida A&M (8-2, 6-1 SWAC)

FAMU's Dark Cloud defense put the clamps on Alabama State in a 21-14 win that wrapped up second place in the SWAC East. The Rattlers will try to extend their winning streak to nine games with a win over Bethune-Cookman in this Saturday's Florida Classic.

Last week's ranking: No. 2

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3. North Carolina Central (8-2, 4-1 MEAC)

The Eagles finished off a strong run through the MEAC with a 48-14 shellacking of Norfolk State. They'll travel to Tennessee Tech to finish off their regular season this weekend and then have a month to prepare for the Celebration Bowl.

Last week's ranking: No. 3

4. North Carolina A&T (7-3, 4-0 Big South)

NC A&T took down Charleston Southern, 20-10, in Week 11 to win its seventh straight game. The Aggies will be at Gardner-Webb this Saturday in a de facto conference championship game, with the winner headed to the FCS playoffs.

Last week's ranking: No. 4

5. Southern (6-4, 4-3 SWAC)

Southern kept its faint hopes at a West Division title alive with a 27-7 win at Mississippi Valley State. The Jaguars own the tiebreaker over Prairie View A&M due to their head-to-head win but will need the Panthers to lose to MVSU on Saturday, followed by a win over Grambling State in the Bayou Classic on Nov. 26. They're off this week.

Last week's ranking: No. 6

6. Alabama State (6-4, 4-3 SWAC)

The Hornets had a chance to beat FAMU in the final seconds but the Rattlers blocked a last-second field goal attempt. ASU is locked into third place in the SWAC East and will end its season with the Turkey Day Classic on Thanksgiving against Arkansas-Pine Bluff.

Last week's ranking: No. 5

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7. Prairie View A&M (6-4, 5-2 SWAC)

PVAMU handled business with a 55-24 victory over Arkansas-Pine Bluff in Week 11. All that stands between the Panthers and a conference championship game rematch with Jackson State is Mississippi Valley.

Last week's ranking: No. 9

8. Alcorn State (5-5, 4-3 SWAC)

The Braves look back on track after beating Bethune-Cookman 17-14 for their second consecutive win. Like Southern, they hold a tiebreaker over PVAMU but have an even tougher path to a division title, as Jackson State comes to town this Saturday.

Last week's ranking: No. 10

9. Texas Southern (5-5, 4-3 SWAC)

Texas Southern is now 4-1 over its last five games with the one loss coming to Jackson State. The Tigers handled Grambling State, 41-7, in Week 11. They'll be at Alabama A&M to close out their regular season this weekend.

Last week's ranking: No. 11

10. Delaware State (5-5, 2-3 MEAC)

The Hornets slipped three spots after losing 37-7 at home to Morgan State. They'll try to end their season on a winning note when Campbell comes to town Saturday.

Last week's ranking: No. 7

11. Hampton (4-6, 1-6 CAA)

Hampton, in its first season in the brutal Colonial Athletic Association, isn't quite ready to compete there yet. The Pirates fell 38-24 to a ranked Elon team and will be at Towson to close out their season this weekend.

Last week's ranking: No. 8

12. Howard (4-6, 3-1 MEAC)

It's been a down year for South Carolina State, but a win over the defending conference champion is always reason to celebrate. Howard beat the Bulldogs, 28-14, and will host Morgan State in its season finale.

Last week's ranking: No. 15

13. Morgan State (4-6, 2-2 MEAC)

The MEAC preseason poll projected Howard to finish fifth and Morgan State sixth. Saturday, the Bison and Bears will meet with second place in the conference on the line. Damon Wilson's first season at Morgan State has been an unqualified success.

Last week's ranking: No. 16

14. Tennessee State (3-7, 2-3 OVC)

Tennessee State's 2022 campaign began with some promise but has gone sideways. The Tigers lost their third straight game in a 20-3 defeat to Tennessee-Martin and will shift their attention to Saturday's season-ending road trip to Texas A&M-Commerce.

Last week's ranking: No. 12

15. Alabama A&M (3-7, 3-4 SWAC)

The Bulldogs gave Jackson State a game, leading after the first quarter before falling in the Gulf Coast Classic. That enabled them to move ahead of Grambling State and South Carolina State this week.

Last week's ranking: No. 17

16. Grambling State (3-7, 2-5 SWAC)

Grambling's two-game winning streak came to an end against Texas Southern. The Tigers will look to close out Hue Jackson's first season on a high note with a win in the Bayou Classic, for which they'll have two weeks to prepare.

Last week's ranking: No. 13

MORE:Grambling State football coach Hue Jackson on Deion Sanders, impact on HBCUs

17. South Carolina State (3-7, 1-3 MEAC)

The Bulldogs began the season No. 2 in these rankings but have now lost three straight games and fallen out of contention for a second straight MEAC title. They'll try to beat Norfolk State at home this weekend and avoid the conference cellar.

Last week's ranking: No. 14

18. Bethune-Cookman (2-8, 2-5 SWAC)

Bethune-Cookman took a lead late into the fourth quarter against Alcorn State before a 50-yard interception return by the Braves. The Wildcats will try to play spoiler for rival FAMU's playoff hopes in the Florida Classic in Orlando.

Last week's ranking: No. 18

19. Mississippi Valley State (1-9, 1-6 SWAC)

The Delta Devils will finish in last place in the SWAC East no matter the result of their season finale vs. Prairie View A&M. An MVSU win would cause some chaos in the SWAC West race, though.

Last week's ranking: No. 19

20. Norfolk State (1-9, 1-3 MEAC)

Norfolk State has lost its last four games by an average of 27 points. The Spartans will finish up their season at South Carolina State.

Last week's ranking: No. 20

21. Arkansas-Pine Bluff (2-8, 0-7 SWAC)

The Golden Lions, still the only HBCU team in FCS not to have beaten another FCS team this season, will be off in Week 12 before the Turkey Day Classic in Montgomery.

Last week's ranking: No. 21

Jacob Shames can be reached by email at jshames@gannett.com, by phone at 334-201-9117 and on Twitter @Jacob_Shames.

This article originally appeared on Mississippi Clarion Ledger: HBCU football rankings Week 11: Jackson State stays on top