The 100 Moments of TSU Athletics presented by Taco Bell® series continues by looking back at a great football moment in Tennessee State history.
In 1981, TSU beat Louisville for the program’s first win over a current FBS university. Three years later, the Tigers’ No. 1 ranked defense smothered the Cardinals again en route to an undefeated season.
TSU came into the 1984 game against Louisville sporting a 9-0 record and was fresh off of a 41-8 drubbing of Bethune-Cookman.
However, the game this week would be played in Louisville under a downpour of rain.
Neither the weather nor the Cardinals’ Division 1-A title intimidated the Tigers, as TSU extended its win streak to 10 with a come-from-behind 24-15 victory.
The Tigers’ offense set team records in the game including 3388 yards during the season. The TSU passing game also helped the squad amass a record 402 points and 455.2 yards per game.
Kenneth Biggles, Gilbert Renfroe and Barry Collins may have been lighting up the scoreboard for most of the season, but it was TSU’s defense that really shined against the Cardinals.
Tennessee State intercepted seven of Louisville’s passes on the day, and also recovered five fumbles.
Defensive back Roger Robins’ interception early in the game got the Tigers’ defense going, and it didn’t stop its relentless attack all day.
Robins’ pick set up a crucial first half field goal, but TSU’s corner Carl McAfee wasn’t content in letting the offense do all the scoring.
McAfee first picked off a pass and tossed the ball to teammate Roger Robinson, who scampered the remaining yardage to a touchdown. He then intercepted another toss and ran it back into the end zone himself.
Offensively, running back Steve Griffin had 115 yards against the Cardinals, including a 67-yard run early in the contest.
TSU went on to be ranked No. 1 in the NCAA Division 1AA regular season poll and its defense was the best in the nation, only allowing an average of 187 yards per game.
The 100 Moments of TSU Athletics presented by Taco Bell® highlights some of the greatest moments in honor of Tennessee State's centennial celebration. A new moment will be released each weekday for a total of 100. These moments were chosen by the TSU 100 Moments committee, which consists of alums from various departments. TSU has so many great moments, not all can be represented in these 100.
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