Archive for March, 2009

Black College football spring updates

Want to know how your favorite HBCU football program is shaping up for the 2009 season? Over the next few weeks, I’ll try to provide updates as spring practice is alive and well on most Black College campuses.

Grambling – The 2008 SWAC and Black College national champions will conclude spring practice with the Black and Gold game Saturday at Eddie Robinson Stadium.

South Carolina State – Last year’s MEAC champion will have its second practice of the spring tonight and have its first scrimmage Saturday. The Bulldogs finished 10-3 last season and performed well despite losing to Appalachian State in the first round of the FCS (formerly Division I-AA) playoffs.

Florida A&M – Curtis Pulley heads into spring drills as the No. 1 quarterback, but Eddie Battle and Martin Ukpai also received snaps as workouts began Monday. The Rattlers will practice two more times this week with the spring game actually coming at the end of next week’s practices on April 4.

Savannah State – The Tigers

Continue reading Black College football spring updates »

Black College players prepare for NFL Draft

NFL scouts are making the rounds of colleges throughout the country in advance of next month’s draft and several HBCUs are on the list.

FAMU and Morgan State will have Pro Day on Thursday while Hampton, Norfolk State and Tennessee State will be under the microscope on Friday. NFL scouts should have plenty to see at Hampton as defensive end Chris Baker, projected by some online mock drafts as a second or third-round selection, and WR Jeremy Gilchrist headline a group of players performing on Pro Day.

Sending players to the league is nothing new for the Pirates, who had a second-rounder (LB Justin Durrant) and a third-rounder (DE Kendall Langford) in the last two NFL Drafts.

In Nashville, the scouts will have a watchful eye on former TSU stars RB Javarris Williams, OT Cornelius Lewis and C Cecil Newton. TSU has been good to the NFL over the years, including last year’s lone HBCU first-rounder – CB Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie.

Other HBCU stops include South Carolina State (March …

Continue reading Black College players prepare for NFL Draft »

All-time Black College football team

Editor’s Note: The recent news that the Black College Football Hall of Fame will be established in Atlanta presented an opening to renew a discussion on the All-time Black College football team. You can view the team, created by Donald Hunt of the Philadelphia Tribune for ESPN, by clicking here and then return to the discussion on my most recent blog.

A few months ago, I created a blog opening the discussion on the All-time Black College football team.

You can check out the team by clicking here. The team had some of the greatest names in HBCU history – Grambling coach Eddie Robinson, QB Doug Williams of Grambling and Jackson State RB Walter Payton just to name a few.

There were some notable omissions from the list, household names from their Black College football and/or NFL days. Shannon Sharpe, who’s likely heading into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in the future, was a dominant player at Savannah State and Richard Dent was a beast at Tennessee State and later with the …

Continue reading All-time Black College football team »

Black College football powers to meet

For those who’ve wanted to see the top two Black College football teams square off, you’ll get your chance in September.

South Carolina State will face Grambling State in the fifth annual MEAC/SWAC Challenge Sept. 6 at the Florida Citrus Bowl in Orlando. The Sunday night event, presented by Disney, will be televised by ESPN2.

South Carolina State won last year’s MEAC title with an unbeaten conference record, advanced to the Football Championship Subdivision (formerly Division I-AA) playoffs and finished 13th in the final FCS rankings. Grambling finished 2008 with an 11-2 record, the SWAC title and the Black College championship.

And yes, SCSU was ranked second behind Grambling in the final Black College poll.

So, what are your thoughts on the big matchup to open the 2009 season? And if for some reason you don’t think that Grambling and SCSU are the best Black College football teams, let me hear your choice and why it (or they) should be on top.

Let the debate begin …

Continue reading Black College football powers to meet »

Black College football tidbits

Just a couple of quick notes from the world of Black College football:

North Carolina Central has signed on to play Duke University in the 2009 season. The historically black institution and the Division I member of the Atlantic Coast Conference are located with miles of each other in Durham, N.C.

The game will be played Sept. 26 at Duke’s Wallace-Wade Stadium.

Former Tennessee State quarterback Joe Gilliam, Jr. was one of 11 recent inductees into the state of Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame. Gilliam played for TSU from 1969-71 and the Pittsburgh Steelers of the NFL from 1972-75.

Gilliam, who was inducted posthumously after his death in 2000, joined former Memphis basketball player Elliott Perry and Decatur native and former Tennessee football player Chip Kell in this year’s class. Gilliam’s father, Joe Gilliam, Sr., was inducted in 2007.

Continue reading Black College football tidbits »