INDIANAPOLIS -- Paul Sharpe, who had scored only one touchdown in his first 11 collegiate games, scored three Saturday as Florida A&M defeated Jackson State 28-14 in the 20th annual Circle City Classic.
Sharpe scored twice on 1-yard runs in the first quarter and caught a 4-yard TD pass to cap a 78-yard, five-play drive opening the second half.
Six turnovers, including five on lost fumbles, frustrated the Tigers' offense. Jackson State was in danger of going scoreless for the first time in 165 games before Tim Manning caught a 4-yard TD pass from Robert Kent with 11:07 to play.
The Rattlers (4-2) moved 61 yards in 11 plays to score in the first period after linebacker Julian Worley forced a Jackson State fumble and recovered the ball. Jackson State (2-4) had driven from its 9-yard line when Torrey Ross fumbled following a 15-yard pass play.
The Tigers turned the ball over again on the ensuing possession when punter Domenick Addison fumbled the snap and Brandon Finney recovered for the Rattlers at the 12. Four plays later Sharpe recorded his second score of the season.
Jackson State's fourth turnover of the game came late in the first half when Kent fumbled on the Rattlers' 6-yard line.
The Rattlers went ahead 25-0 after recovering another Kent fumble on the Rattlers' 20-yard line. Florida A&M then marched 77 yards in 13 plays to score on a 2-yard run by Rashard Pompey.
A 23-yard field goal by Juan Vasquez put the Rattlers ahead 28-7 and Cletis Gordon returned the ensuing kickoff 95 yards for Jackson State's second touchdown.
Officials announced an RCA Dome sellout of 58,198 for the annual battle of two black colleges -- nearly 3,000 above the 55,506 capacity listed by the NFL's Indianapolis Colts. However, many of the seats were empty the entire game.
This story is from ESPN.com's automated news wire. Wire index
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