HATTIESBURG, Miss. (WAVY) — Jalen Richard ran for 161 yards and four touchdowns, Nick Mullens passed for two TDs and ran for another, and Southern Mississippi rallied to beat Old Dominion 56-31 on Saturday.
ODU quarterback David Washington left the game in the first quarter with a knee injury. In a post game interview, coach Bobby Wilder said he thinks Washington suffered torn ligaments in both his MCL and ACL. Washington, a junior, is out for the rest of the season.
Redshirt freshman Shuler Bentley took over Washington and he had his most productive game as a Monarch.
ODU led 17-14 at halftime, and in the third quarterback Mullens hit Michael Thomas on a 24-yard scoring pass, but Shuler Bentley threw scoring passes of 11 and 64 yards to Jonathan Duhart and the Monarchs (5-6, 3-4 Conference USA) led 31-21.
Ito Smith scored on a 19-yard run and Richard scored the go-ahead TD on a 10-yard run. He added a 4-yard run after Trae Collins’ interception. Mullens scored from 9 yards and Richard from 54 in the fourth.
Mullens was 21 of 37 for 302 yards, and the Golden Eagles had 612 yard to 338 for the Monarchs.
Bentley was 22 of 41 for 228 yards, with a 16-yard TD pass to Zach Pascal. Martez Simpson recovered a Mullens fumble and returned it for a 33-yard score.
ODU needs to win its regular season finale next week at home against Florida Atlantic to become bowl eligible. FAU lost to the Florida Gators 20-14 in overtime.