CHARLESTON, Ill. -- Calvin McNairl threw for one touchdown and passed for another as Tennessee State stumped Eastern Illinois 21-10 Thursday night.
McNairl put the Tigers (4-7, 3-4 Ohio Valley) ahead 7-3 in the third quarter when he scored from a yard out. His 3-yard pass to Ronald Bright extended the edge to 14-3.
After Charles Graves hauled in a 22-yard TD pass from Jake Christensen with 10:11 left to help Eastern Illinois (8-3, 6-2) trim the gap to 14-10, Donte Thomas scored on a 10-yard run to put Tennessee State in command.
McNairl finished 9 of 16 for 135 yards. Thomas carried 20 times for 70 yards.
Christensen was 13 of 33 for 151 yards and was pressured into three interceptions.
Eastern Illinois will still get the OVC's automatic bid if Jacksonville State beats Eastern Kentucky on Saturday. But if Eastern Kentucky wins, the Colonels will earn the bid.