Sports

Carson-Newman coach Ken Sparks earns 324th win, passes Paul 'Bear' Bryant on NCAA career list

  • In this photo taken Saturday, Oct. 25, 2014,  in Jefferson City, Tennessee, Carson Newman University head football coach, Ken Sparks walks the sideline during their game against North Greenville. Carson Newman won 35-34 and the win was the 324th for Sparks, all with the Eagles. With the victory, Sparks passed former Alabama coach Paul "Bear" Bryant and is now alone in fifth place on the all-time career wins list in college football. For Sparks, it made it special that the victory came on homecoming. (AP Photo/Carson Newman University, Wade Payne/)

    In this photo taken Saturday, Oct. 25, 2014, in Jefferson City, Tennessee, Carson Newman University head football coach, Ken Sparks walks the sideline during their game against North Greenville. Carson Newman won 35-34 and the win was the 324th for Sparks, all with the Eagles. With the victory, Sparks passed former Alabama coach Paul "Bear" Bryant and is now alone in fifth place on the all-time career wins list in college football. For Sparks, it made it special that the victory came on homecoming. (AP Photo/Carson Newman University, Wade Payne/)  (The Associated Press)

  • In this photo taken Saturday, Oct. 25, 2014,  in Jefferson City, Tennessee Carson Newman University head football coach, Ken Sparks walks the sideline during their game against North Greenville. Carson Newman won 35-34 and the win was the 324th for Sparks, all with the Eagles. With the victory, Sparks passed former Alabama coach Paul "Bear" Bryant and is now alone in fifth place on the all-time career wins list in college football. For Sparks, it made it special that the victory came on homecoming. (AP Photo/Carson Newman University, Wade Payne/)

    In this photo taken Saturday, Oct. 25, 2014, in Jefferson City, Tennessee Carson Newman University head football coach, Ken Sparks walks the sideline during their game against North Greenville. Carson Newman won 35-34 and the win was the 324th for Sparks, all with the Eagles. With the victory, Sparks passed former Alabama coach Paul "Bear" Bryant and is now alone in fifth place on the all-time career wins list in college football. For Sparks, it made it special that the victory came on homecoming. (AP Photo/Carson Newman University, Wade Payne/)  (The Associated Press)

  • In this Nov. 23, 2013, photo provided by Carson-Newman Uiversity, Carson Newman football coach Ken Sparks talks to his players during an NCAA Division II football game in Jefferson City, Tenn. Sparks has won five NAIA titles and has reached the NAIA or NCAA Division II championship game four other times during his 35-year coaching career. Sparks can reach one more milestone Saturday, Oct. 18, 2014,  as he seeks his 323rd career victory, which would tie him with Paul "Bear" Bryant for sixth place on the NCAA's all-time list. (AP Photo/Carson-Newman University, Adam Greene)

    In this Nov. 23, 2013, photo provided by Carson-Newman Uiversity, Carson Newman football coach Ken Sparks talks to his players during an NCAA Division II football game in Jefferson City, Tenn. Sparks has won five NAIA titles and has reached the NAIA or NCAA Division II championship game four other times during his 35-year coaching career. Sparks can reach one more milestone Saturday, Oct. 18, 2014, as he seeks his 323rd career victory, which would tie him with Paul "Bear" Bryant for sixth place on the NCAA's all-time list. (AP Photo/Carson-Newman University, Adam Greene)  (The Associated Press)

Carson-Newman coach Ken Sparks earned his 324th victory Saturday, passing Paul "Bear" Bryant and moving into sixth place on the NCAA's career victories list as the Eagles rallied to a 35-34 win over North Greenville.

Sparks, in his 35th season at Carson-Newman, improved his career record to 324-87-2. Bryant went 323-85-17 for Maryland, Kentucky, Texas A&M and Alabama from 1945-82.

The top five coaches in career victories are John Gagliardi (489-138-11), Eddie Robinson (408-165-15), Bobby Bowden (377-129-4), Pop Warner (336-114-32) and Larry Kehres (332-24-3). The 70-year-old Sparks has the most wins of any active coach.

Warner previously was credited with 319 wins, but the NCAA updated his record in 2012 to include victories he'd earned while coaching Iowa State in the 1890s. NCAA records show Warner coached two schools at the same time from 1895-99.

Carson-Newman (6-1) rallied from a 28-7 second-quarter deficit.