banner
Donal Ware

Top 5 HBCU football teams

Posted September 2, 2010

Top 5 HBCU football teams

5. Tuskegee

The Golden Tigers are stalking their fifth consecutive SIAC title with 15 starters returning. They also expect to have back WR Jonathan Lessa and All-American C Michael Stevens, a pair of former starters who missed 2009 with injuries. The Golden Tigers’ offense, not as productive last season as in previous years, should be improved with QB Josh Harris (882 yards passing, 8 TDs) as the full-time starter. Harris became the No. 1 signal caller when Jeremy Williams was injured against Albany State last year. Harris rallied the Golden Tigers to victory against Albany State and was 4-0 as the starter. All-conference and Boxtorow.com/BASN preseason All-American performer Antoine Mitchell (47 catches, 800 yards, 7 TDs), D’Mario Franklin and Lessa provide Harris a deep and talented corps of wide receivers. FBs John Pascley (415 yards rushing, 10 TDs) and Nykeem Barton (308 yards, 6 TDs) lead a running game that could use an infusion of speed. DT Danny Anderson (37 tackles, 9 sacks) and DE Darian Barnes (37 tackles, 12 sacks) anchor a strong defensive line. The secondary will miss All-American Justin Hannah but should still be formidable with the addition of Dontrell Miller, an All-America transfer from Tennessee-Martin. The Tigers open the season Saturday hosting Benedict.

4. Texas Southern

With Grambling losing Christian Anthony for the season with an apparent heart attack a few weeks back and quarterback Greg Dillion being denied a sixth year of eligibility by the NCAA, an extremely talented Texas Southern makes the top five. The Tigers were the surprise in the conference in 2009, Johnnie Cole’s second season at the helm. They had their first winning record in a decade and their highest finish in the conference since 1998 after being winless in 11 games the year before Cole took over. Defense was the Tigers’ calling card in 2009 as they led SWAC and were 21st in the FCS. They will again be strong defensively. In addition to LB Dejuan Fulghum (88 tackles, 8 sacks) the entire secondary returns. The Tigers should be more potent on offense with QB Arvell Nelson (2,392 yards passing, 12 TDs), who transferred in from Iowa last season, having a full grasp of the system. Nelson has a solid offensive line protecting him, led by All-SWAC performer Charles Smith who has started the last two seasons and played every position without missing a snap. They will also get a boost with the return of WR/KR William Osborne, who sat out last season with an injury following an All-American season in 2008. There opening game against Prairie View A&M in the annual Labor Day Classic in Houston could set the tone not only for the SWAC but have early implications on the Black college national championship.

3. Florida A&M
The Rattlers’ hopes of overtaking South Carolina State and staying ahead of the rest of the MEAC revolve around their quarterback situation. They no longer have Curtis Pulley, who not only was their top passer but was also their leading rusher. Martin Ukpai is the leading candidate to replace Pulley. Ukpai, in his first collegiate start, amassed 284 yards of total offense and led the Rattlers to a victory against arch-rival Bethune-Cookman in the Florida Classic. He has to show that he can produce those numbers over an entire season. WR Isaac West (36 catches, 641 yards) will be a top target for Ukpai. RB Philip Sylvester’s (455 yards rushing, 7 TDs) workload in the running game will likely increase to make up for the yards Pulley accounted for on the ground. Defensively the Rattlers are looking to improve from their middle of the pack status of a year ago. MLB Alvis Graham (66 tackles, six sacks), S Greg Harvey and DE Marquiste Ramos are counted on to step up their play and give the Rattlers a championship caliber defense. PK Trevor Scott gives the Rattlers an additional offensive weapon. He has made 92 of 94 PATs in two seasons and 24 of 42 field goal attempts. Scott made a career-best 52-yard field against Howard last season. FAMU opens the season Thursday night against No. 13 Miami.

2. Prairie View A&M
The Panthers are hunted, no longer the hunters after winning their first SWAC championship in 35 years, and they look to have enough to stay in front of the field. The Panthers will be potent on offense against this season with All-world QB K.J. Black (70 percent completion, 2,033 yards passing, 22 TDS, 4 INTs) and All-SWAC RB Donald Babers (919 yards rushing, 9 TDs) returning. They will operate behind a line that has four starters returning, including All-SWAC performers in G James Dekle and T Tim Husey, and allowed just 19 sacks in 2009. The Panthers’ only question on offense is who will emerge as their go-to receivers after losing a pair of four-year starters. Shaun Stephens (36 catches, 404 yards) appears ready to step up. Brandon Bell and Michael Benson showed promise last year. The Panthers expect to be rock solid on defense again. DEs Marco Spears and Jamail Lavan, who missed most of 2009 with injuries, are at the heart of what should be a formidable front four. Sophomore Elton Holmes takes over at middle linebacker. He will be surrounded by returning starters Chris Ford and Max Sencherey. Boxtorow.com/BASN Preseason All-American Chris Adingupu will be the leader in the secondary. Coach Henry Frazier III’s concern on defense is replacing All-SWAC FS Anthony Beck. The Panthers will be tested right out of the gate in their opener against Texas Southern on September 5.

1. South Carolina State

The Bulldogs, the two-time defending MEAC champions, are primed to three-peat. QB Malcolm Long, who completed 64 percent of his passes for2,502 yards and 20 TDs, had a breakout junior season and should be even better this time around despite losing his top three receivers and RB Will Ford, the MEAC’s career rushing leader. Long will operate behind a seasoned line, which returns four starters, including Boxtorow.com/BASN All-American Johnny Culbreath who was the 2009 MEAC Offensive Lineman of the Year. The Bulldogs have a bevy of talented but unproven running backs vying to replace Ford with Chris Massey, Chris Merrill and Rock King and highly regarded freshman Charles Brown topping the list. The linebacking corps will set the tone on defense. Marshall McFadden returns after missing the 2009 season with an injury to a team with David Erby, Donovan Richard and Julius Wilkerson. Bulldog coaches consider Wilkerson the most talented of the quartet. The Bulldogs open the season on Saturday at No. 16 Georgia Tech.

Locally

Fayetteville State
The strength for the defensive CIAA Champion Broncos will be in the trenches as Dillon Kestner and Larry McDonald were named preseason All-CIAA. RB Richard Medlin 667 yards 10 TDs will look to have a breakout season. Wyoming transfer QB Robert Benjamin has come in and commanded a leadership role. Coach Kenny Phillips is excited about what Benjamin brings to the table from a mental and physical standpoint. While offensive coordinator Connell Maynor has moved on to become head coach at Winston-Salem State, 45-year football coaching veteran Dick Portee, who had a couple of stints as an assistant with NC State, will take over as offensive coordinator. The Broncos defense lost a lot from last year and is really young, which is of concern to Phillips. The Broncos open the season in the Two Rivers Classic on Saturday at UNC-Pembroke.

North Carolina Central
The Eagles are in their fourth season playing at the Division I level after competing in Division II as a member of CIAA. They don’t play a full conference schedule this year and aren’t eligible for the title until next season. With 61 lettermen and 17 starters returning, Coach Mose Rison is building a solid foundation. QB Michael Johnson (1,931 yards passing, 18TDs 10 INTs) was impressive last year in his first season with the Eagles and Rison will look for more from him. Geovonie Irvine (38-582-3) will be his primary target RB Tim Shankle (180-739-8) should receive the bulk of the carriers and Tony McCord (77-359-1) provides a nice change of pace. An experienced offensive line that includes four returning starters should produce time for Johnson to throw and holes for the backs. The Eagles return eight starters on defense and look to build on a strong finish on that side of the ball. LBs Donald Laster and Calvin Hillie will be the key leaders. Senior DT Teryl White anchors the line that has three starters from a year ago. DT Shane Moore, a transfer from Marshall, is expected to be a major contributor. DB Rashad Fox anchors the secondary. The Eagles have seven home games beginning Thursday evening against Johnson C. Smith.

Saint Augustine’s
Perennially the Falcons defense has always been stout but 2009 was an exception. Saint Aug's gave up almost 300 yards of total offense per game. Conversely, the offense hadn't shown much sign of life, but last year averaged over 200 yards of total offense per game. Michael Costa has been head of the program since it reinstated football in 2002 and this year he is looking for a balance and may get it. Offensively, the Falcons may have the best running back tandem in the conference in Walter Sanders and Arnold Mullins (1,016 yards, 8 TDs total). The Falcons also look like they finally have some stability at quarterback as Joaquin Green returns for his sophomore season after being named CIAA Rookie of the Year, completing 48.5 percent of his passes for 1,318 yards with 12 TDs and 10 INTs. Defensively, the Falcons should be better as LBs Steven Stanback (72 tackles, 9 tackles for loss, preseason All-CIAA) and Mark Hall (78 tackles, 13.5 tackles for loss) lead the unit. The Falcons open the season on Saturday at Catawba

Shaw
The Bears were points short of going for its third-straight CIAA Championship last year losing 29-28 at Fayetteville State. The Bears will have a strong running game again this year, led by All-CIAA RB Raymond Williams (138-811-12), arguably the best back in the conference. The Bears will have a stable quarterback in former Southern Durham star Kevin Atkins who transfers in from Alabama A&M. The Bears led the conference in scoring averaging 42.1 points per game. The Bears will have a solid defense, led by preseason All-CIAA selections DL Demarcus Roberson and LB Fred Sparkman. Shaw has an opportunity to win the CIAA Championship for the third time in four years and opens the season on Saturday hosting Virginia Union at Southeast Raleigh’s John Baker Stadium.
 

Comments

This blogpost is closed for comments.

Oldest First
View all
  • The Logan Zone

    Today at 11:30 am on WRAL-TV

  • NFL: Detroit at New England

    Today at 1:00 pm on FOX50

  • NFL: Cleveland at Atlanta

    Today at 1:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • NFL: Miami at Denver

    Today at 4:25 pm on WRAL-TV

  • CBB: NC State vs. South Florida

    Today at 4:00 pm on WRAL-FM

  • NFL: Washington at San Francisco

    Today at 4:15 pm on 99.9 The Fan

  • NFL: Dallas at NY Giants

    Tonight at 8:30 on 99.9 The Fan

Scoreboard
Local
Final
NCCU 21
NCA 14
 
Final
DAVID 72
UNC 90
Final
ECU 34
TULA 6
 
Final
COL 4
CAR 3
Final
DUKE 70
STAN 59
4:00pm Today
CREI
NCCU
 
4:00pm Today
NCSU
SFLA
 
6:00pm Tonight
MIA
CHA
 
Final
ORL 92
MIA 99
Final
IND 83
PHO 106
Final
NYK 91
PHI 83
Final
CLE 93
TOR 110
Final
HOU 95
DAL 92
Final
MIN 101
SAC 113
Final
SAN 99
BRK 87
Final
MIL 100
WAS 111
Final
UTA 94
NOP 106
6:00pm Tonight
MIA
CHA
 
6:00pm Tonight
MEM
LAC
 
6:00pm Tonight
BOS
POR
 
7:00pm Tonight
OKC
GSW
 
9:30pm Tonight
LAL
DEN
 
Final
UGA 55
CHSO 9
Final
UF 52
EKU 3
Final
OSU 42
IND 27
Final
OKLA 44
KU 7
Final
UAB 18
MARS 23
Final
NEB 24
MINN 28
Final
PURD 14
NW 38
 
Final
ILL 16
PSU 14
Final
MSU 45
RUTG 3
Final
UCF 53
SMU 7
 
Final
SCAR 37
SALABAMA 12
Final
WKENT 45
TXSANANTO 7
 
Final
WAKE 6
VT 3
 
Final
ODU 30
LATU 27
Final
ARST 52
WASU 31
Final
CMICH 20
WMICH 32
 
Final
COLST 58
NMU 20
Final
LALAF 16
APPST 35
Final
BST 45
EMICH 30
Final
HOU 38
TULSA 28
Final
UTAH 10
ARZ 42
Final
FSU 20
BC 17
Final
UNT 17
FIU 14
 
Final
CLEM 28
GASTATE 0
 
Final
ND 28
LOU 31
 
Final
MICH 16
MD 23
 
Final
ARK 30
MISS 0
Final
PITT 30
SYR 7
Final
ISU 31
TTU 34
 
Final
ECU 34
TULA 6
 
Final
IOWA 24
WISC 26
Final
MEM 31
SFLA 20
Final
CAL 17
STAN 38
Final
NMST 17
LAMON 30
Final
ALA 48
WCAR 14
Final
OREG 44
COL 10
Final
MTST 35
FATL 34
Final
UVA 30
MIAMI 13
Final
AUB 31
SAMF 7
Final
TENN 21
MIZZ 29
Final
BAY 49
OKST 28
Final
MSST 51
VANDY 0
Final
UCONN 0
CIN 41
Final
UCLA 38
USC 20
Final
WYO 14
BSU 63
Final
NEV 20
FRES 40
 
Final
WASH 37
ORST 13
Final
HAW 37
UNLV 35
 
Final
PRIN 68
INCWORD 79
 
Final
UMASS 68
ND 81
Final
GEOR 80
RMU 66
 
Final
LAS 59
PETE 50
Final
VT 63
APP 65
 
Final
IUPUI 71
BST 69
Final
WMICH 91
DRAK 75
 
Final
RICH 80
HIGH 56
 
Final
MSST 71
UTST 63
Final
CAMP 48
COL 54
 
Final
DAVID 72
UNC 90
Final
NIOWA 66
UNF 49
 
Final
CSNO 79
SAMF 72
 
Final
YALE 61
MLOWELL 63
 
Final
NEV 50
CLEM 59
Final
PROV 80
FSU 54
 
Final
MARQ 89
NEOM 97
Final
DET 66
SALA 53
 
Final
TXSA 80
TXST 67
 
Final
CHIST 75
TRINCHRIS 52
 
Final
UMO 63
LIB 52
 
Final
BONA 59
CAN 53
 
Final
SAV 87
CLST 83
 
Final
NW 68
ELON 67
 
Final
RFLSH 57
MDES 53
 
Final
CARK 68
SEMIZ 74
 
Final
AFA 90
WSCO 60
 
Final
YOUNG 82
LONG 72
 
Final
MTST 66
SOUTH 48
 
Final
ARKLR 73
UMKC 68
Final
ABCHRIST 81
DUQ 102
 
Final
WEBER 58
LSU 72
 
Final
BUT 80
GHND 39
 
Final
CSFU 70
SJST 66
 
Final
WOFF 72
SD 68
Final
NORST 76
TXSOU 66
 
Final
COOK 42
TOWS 63
 
Final
SILL 46
YALE 53
 
Final
KNST 83
ALCOR 80
 
Final
MAN 78
BING 63
 
Final
JVST 88
MILES 71
 
Final
CSOU 79
WRST 86
 
Final
CITA 81
BOBJONES 50
 
Final
INDST 78
BRO 66
 
Final
WYO 56
COL 33
 
Final
GSOUT 97
FCCOL 41
 
Final
CCAR 76
PIEDINT 33
 
Final
LATU 63
AMER 44
 
Final
MAR 62
ARMY 76
 
Final
TENT 69
CHAT 67
Final
EKENT 115
CLERMONT 50
 
Final
SMU 77
EWASH 68
Final
NIAG 62
HART 65
 
Final
PENN 77
LAF 83
 
Final
UCSB 91
MASTERS 45
 
Final
BUCK 69
MNTER 73
 
Final
VMI 93
UNCW 110
 
Final
RIU 66
NEB 62
Final
NKENTUCKY 98
OHMWSTRN 48
 
Final
GTDNS 73
QUIN 76
 
Final
EMICH 70
UNCG 62
Final
ETST 98
UNCA 87
 
Final
TEMPL 50
UNLV 57
 
Final
STJOE 68
VERM 60
 
Final
MON 65
CCST 50
Final
KSU 78
ILLCH 60
Final
FAIR 60
SHSU 74
Final
LIP 74
TRANSYLVAN 63
 
Final
FUR 55
UCD 58
Final
WKENT 63
BEL 64
Final
NDST 74
HAMP 66
 
Final
IND 85
LAM 72
 
Final
TTU 80
MIZST 68
Final
HOU 72
MRGST 57
 
Final
NAVY 44
NE 68
Final
ALAAM 81
OAKW 61
 
Final
WILL 60
SELA 57
 
Final
TULA 89
SONO 45
 
Final
TXPA 82
A 77
 
Final
RICE 65
WMARY 69
Final
TXARL 87
HOUB 69
 
Final
MINN 69
UMBC 51
 
Final
UTEP 77
NMST 76
 
Final
GONZ 109
STTHOM 55
Final
SUTAH 75
WLVRN 85
 
Final
PBY 49
MORE 69
 
Final
DUKE 70
STAN 59
Final
WISC 78
BSU 54
Final
PORT 75
SIUE 53
9:30am Today
MAINE
VALPO
 
11:30am Today
GMAS
COC
 
12:00pm Today
FSU
UMASS
 
12:00pm Today
SHSU
WOFF
 
12:00pm Today
UNCG
YOUNG
 
12:30pm Today
CMICH
ARKPB
 
1:00pm Today
ILLCH
SILL
 
1:30pm Today
MORE
AMER
 
1:30pm Today
CORN
DREX
 
2:00pm Today
CCST
COOK
 
2:00pm Today
ARKLR
CSNO
 
2:00pm Today
LEH
CLMB
 
2:00pm Today
USB
MERMAR
 
2:00pm Today
FAIR
SD
 
2:00pm Today
NMU
TEXAM
 
2:00pm Today
STLU
TAMCC
 
2:30pm Today
EMICH
LONG
 
2:30pm Today
ND
PROV
 
3:00pm Today
RAD
CATAWBA
 
3:00pm Today
DEN
COPST
 
3:00pm Today
UAB
JST
 
3:00pm Today
WICHS
NWM
 
3:00pm Today
OKLA
NWST
 
3:30pm Today
PSU
USC
 
3:30pm Today
KSU
YALE
 
4:00pm Today
CREI
NCCU
 
4:00pm Today
NCSU
SFLA
 
4:00pm Today
UCR
STKAT
 
4:05pm Today
HC
NICHOLSCOL
 
4:30pm Today
BC
DAY
 
4:30pm Today
MON
TOWS
 
4:30pm Today
SAMF
UMKC
 
4:30pm Today
HOF
WAGN
 
5:00pm Tonight
CIN
EILL
 
5:00pm Tonight
UGA
FATL
 
5:00pm Tonight
BRAD
NCAT
 
5:00pm Tonight
LATU
PBY
 
5:00pm Tonight
RUTG
Terriers
 
5:30pm Tonight
NAVY
BING
 
6:00pm Tonight
SHU
GWEBB
 
6:00pm Tonight
UNT
IONA
 
6:00pm Tonight
KENT
MNTST
 
6:00pm Tonight
FORD
MLOWELL
 
6:00pm Tonight
UCF
USCU
 
6:30pm Tonight
SCAR
AKR
 
6:30pm Tonight
WVU
UCONN
 
7:00pm Tonight
CALST
DEL
 
7:00pm Tonight
HOW
HOOD
 
7:00pm Tonight
OSU
SHU
 
7:00pm Tonight
VANDY
TENST
 
8:00pm Tonight
NE
MAN
 
8:00pm Tonight
COLST
MERC
 
8:00pm Tonight
MISS
NARZ
 
8:00pm Tonight
WASH
PAC
 
8:00pm Tonight
LMU
SDCHR
 
9:00pm Tonight
CHAR
MIAMI
 
9:00pm Tonight
ILLST
ODU
 
9:00pm Tonight
GAELS
UCI
 
10:00pm Tonight
UCLA
LBSU
 
10:30pm Tonight
SEAT
MONT
 
Final
OTT 2
STL 3
Final
WAS 1
BUF 2
Final
PHI 4
CLB 2
Final
TOR 4
DET 1
 
Final
TAM 2
MIN 1
Final
BOS 0
MON 2
 
Final
NYI 4
PIT 1
 
Final
NAS 3
FLA 2
Final
DAL 5
LOS 4
Final
COL 4
CAR 3
Final
EDM 1
CHI 7
Final
CAL 5
NJD 4
Final
SJS 3
ARI 4
4:30pm Today
WIN
STL
 
7:00pm Tonight
NYR
MON
 
8:00pm Tonight
ANA
ARI
 
9:30pm Tonight
VAN
CHI
 
1:00pm Today
HOU
CIN
1:00pm Today
ATL
CLE
1:00pm Today
NEP
DET
1:00pm Today
MIN
GBP
1:00pm Today
IND
JAC
1:00pm Today
CHI
TAM
1:00pm Today
PHI
TEN
4:05pm Today
SEA
ARI
4:05pm Today
SDC
STL
4:25pm Today
DEN
MIA
4:25pm Today
SFX
WAS
8:30pm Tonight
NYG
DAL
Final
NCCU 21
NCA 14