HBCU sports season is officially on, and as host of the national sports talk radio show, From the Press Box to Press Row, I cover all the action on the games that showcase our Historically Black Colleges and Universities. HBCU GameTime will provide a weekly rundown on what’s happening on the field, and occasionally other sports-related topics. Let’s play!
While there were a lot of talented HBCU football players last season, what immediately comes to mind when I think back is the run that the Winston-Salem State Rams made.
The Rams, crowned Boxtorow HBCU National Champions by the media, went 13-1 and won the most games of any HBCU in a single season. The Rams made it all the way to the NCAA Division II national semifinals before falling.
The question now becomes, can the Rams repeat that feat, perhaps better it, or will another team reign supreme in 2012?
Any time you have a really good quarterback — which the Rams do in All-CIAA performer Kameron Smith (completed 59 percent of his passes for 2,706 yards and 33 touchdowns) — your chances of repeating are enhanced.
Challenging the Rams in the CIAA will be the Elizabeth City State Vikings, a playoff contender in their own respect a year ago. The Vikings have the CIAA Preseason Offensive Player of the Year in running back Daronte McNeill.
Look for challenges for the HBCU national crown from defending champions in respective conferences including Miles (SIAC), Norfolk State (MEAC), which was the national champion in the Boxtorow HBCU FCS Coaches Poll, and Grambling (SWAC).
Look for Alabama State (SWAC), Jackson State (SWAC), and Bethune-Cookman (MEAC) to be serious challengers with Alabama A&M (SWAC) and Morehouse (SIAC) having an outside shot and North Carolina A&T (MEAC) being my sleeper team.
For more about the respective conferences, click here.
I welcome your questions and comments on HBCU sports below: