MIAMI — Phillip Tanner scored on a 3-yard run with 7:26 left to help Middle Tennessee edge Florida International 28-27 Saturday night and become bowl eligible.
The Blue Raiders denied FIU's chance for sole possession of the conference title. The Panthers share the Sun Belt crown with Troy. All three teams are bowl eligible but the Sun Belt only has two guaranteed bowl bids.
FIU had a chance to get in field-goal range, but T.Y. Hilton fumbled after he caught an 8-yard pass from Wayne Younger with 2:38 left. Corey Carmichael recovered at the Blue Raider 27.
Younger replaced Wesley Carroll, who appeared to get hit in the face and nose on a run midway through the fourth quarter.
Tanner's score came 2:31 after FIU took a 27-21 lead when Darriet Perry scored on a 6-yard run. Tanner led Middle Tennessee with 62 yards and two scores.
Perry set an FIU record for rushing touchdowns in a season as he scored his 13th and 14th and finished with 16 carries for 53 yards. Darian Mallary led all rushers with 114 yards rushing.
TROY 44, FLA. ATLANTIC 7: Corey Robinson threw three touchdowns and Shawn Southward rushed for two for the visiting Trojans, who earned a piece of the Sun Belt championship with Florida International's loss.
Troy beat the Owls for the seventh time in eight seasons.
Robinson was 22-for-31 for 305 yards for the Trojans, who scored 30 points in the first half.
The Owls lost their third consecutive game. Jeff Van Camp was 21-for-41 for 302 yards and a touchdown for FAU in coach Howard Schnellenberger's 300th career college game.
"I feel embarrassed for the seniors and for the fans out there," Van Camp told the South Florida Sun Sentinel.
The game was the 300th for FAU coach Howard Schnellenberger. Schnellenberger, 76, is 157-140-3 overall and 57-63 in 10 seasons at FAU.