MACON, Ga. (MERCER RELEASE) – The Mercer football program and defensive back Alex Avant continue to garner national attention for his interception return as highlighted in Monday's Yahoo Sports Minute.
The highlight reel play was featured on ESPN SportsCenter's Top10 as the top play of the day and the No. 2 play of the weekend and now headlines the latest Yahoo Sports Minute with Angela Sun.
After Mercer raced out to a 10-0 lead in the second quarter, Avant added to that advantage when the Lithonia, Ga., native picked off a pass and created a highlight film on the return. After pulling down the tipped pass, he slid to the far sideline, eluded a pair of tackles and cut back to the middle of the field where he raced to the corner of the end zone for a 35-yard touchdown return. The highlight play brought the 8,150 Mercer fans to their feet as the Bears jumped out to a 17-0 second quarter lead.
Avant earned Pioneer Football League Defensive Player of the Week honors for his effort in a 31-17 victory over Drake that sent Mercer to 4-0 on the season.
The sophomore led the Bears with four solo tackles, seven assisted tackles, one interception and a 35-yard interception return for a touchdown.
Avant is part of a defense that ranks No. 1 in the country FCS total defense, allowing just 241.5 yards per game. The Bears are also No. 6 in the nation in rushing defense and No. 8 in first down defense.
The Bears continue their Pioneer Football League slate next Saturday, traveling to California to take on San Diego. Kickoff is set for 4 p.m. EST.