Thursday, August 31, 2017

Tulane not taking Grambling lightly — and for the Green Wave, that's not a chiche

NEW ORLEANS, Louisiana -- Although Tulane never has lost to a team from the Football Championship Subdivision, Grambling has the Green Wave’s full attention entering Saturday’s season opener at Yulman Stadium.

Players and coaches always say they take every opponent seriously, but the Tigers have the credentials to make anyone take notice. Ranked No. 21 in the preseason FCS coaches’ poll, they are coming off a 12-1 season, and the loss came with an asterisk.

Grambling led Arizona 21-3 at halftime before falling 31-21. The Tigers played the final 2½ quarters without star quarterback DeVante Kincade. He was hurt after throwing a pair of early touchdown passes, and the Tigers imploded with six turnovers in the second half.

They outscored everyone else 528-174, coasting to the Southwestern Athletic Conference championship.

“I was in the FCS for four years at Sam Houston State, and we really felt like we could compete with most Division I schools in the country, so this (Grambling) is a top flight I-AA program,” Tulane coach Willie Fritz said. “We know it's going to be a tremendous challenge for us.”


Lyles to start for JSU, but Hayes will play too

JACKSON, Mississippi -- Brent Lyles will start Saturday against TCU, but Jackson State coach Tony Hughes is hedging his bets when it comes to a long-term answer at quarterback.

Hughes said Wednesday that the game plan is for junior college transfer Jarrad Hayes to see some playing time as well.

"Whether that's in the first quarter, the second quarter or the second half, we don't know that yet," Hughes said. "We'll see what the game dictates."

At the end of the day, Lyles and Hayes got the nod over Jordan Williams and Tavis Williams because of their leadership. Both have shown the ability to command the Jackson State offense, read defenses and get their teammates lined up.

Lyles, in particular, showed in spring camp and through the fall he is ready to become Hughes' on-the-field general.

But the quarterback battle between Lyles and Hayes, and even Jordan Williams and Tavis Williams, is clearly not finished.


PVAMU Football Returns To Practice, Turns Attention To #3 SHS Bearkats

PRAIRIE VIEW, Texas -- The Prairie View A&M University football team returned to practice Wednesday night to begin preparations for the season opener next Thursday against #3 Sam Houston St.

The Panthers and Bearkats will kickoff just after 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 7 at Panther Stadium in a live nationally televised game on ESPNU. Tickets are available for the contest at

Wednesday was the first practice since Friday morning, as the Panthers and the Houston area dealt with Hurricane Harvey.

"It feels good to be back out here," said PVAMU head coach Willie Simmons. It really puts things in perspective as to what's really important at the end of the day. Our hearts, thoughts, and prayers continue to go out to everyone affected by the storm and the flooding over the past week. As the saying goes, 'life will go on' and Prairie View A&M University will go on and football has to go on with our responsibility to our program. We have a huge challenge ahead of us against the #3 ranked team in the country. It felt good to get back to practice and get our minds off of everything and get back to what we love to do."

The return to practice brought a sense of normalcy as well as focus for the program. Last week the focus shifted to Texas Southern and the Labor Day Classic XXXIII game scheduled for this Saturday. With the decision announced Monday to postpone the game until Thanksgiving Weekend, a new opponent comes into view, but just as importantly, game week is here with the Thursday contest a week away.

"I think the uncertainty which was there earlier this week is over," Simmons said. "I think it felt good for the guys to touch a football, to put the pads on, and be in our element. We know that barring something unforeseen, the game will be here next week. I know there was a lot of uncertainty of when we would play TSU. Now, we can put that behind us and clearly focus on our Sam Houston St."

The Bearkats were the only team in FCS football to go undefeated during the regular season. Sam Houston St., which had its opening game against #7 Richmond Sunday postponed due to Hurricane Harvey, will face the Spiders Friday in Waco, Texas at Baylor's McLane Stadium.

"It's a great challenge and a great opportunity for us," Simmons said. "We knew when we scheduled the game that it was a great opportunity for this university to continue our push toward national prominence. Sam Houston State is one of the most respected programs in FCS Football. They were ranked #1 most of last year, and are ranked preseason #3 this year. The job that Coach K.C. Keeler has done is nothing short of amazing. He's an outstanding coach, and they have outstanding players. We understand the challenge of a team of their caliber coming in to Panther Stadium. We'll be up for the challenge, and we're looking forward to the opportunity on national television to show what we are as a football team, as a program, and as a university."


Wednesday, August 30, 2017

XU Nuggets start 3-1 for first time in program history

DEARBORN, Michigan — Xavier University of Louisiana didn't secure its first-ever victory against a ranked volleyball opponent Friday, but the Gold Nuggets concluded the UM-Dearborn Early Bird with their best-ever record through four matches.

XULA improved to 3-1 after its second victory of Saturday and third of the tournament, 25-12, 25-22, 25-14 against Fisk.

Freshmen Kayla Black and Anna Dalla Vecchia led the Gold Nuggets against the Lady Bulldogs (0-3). Black had nine kills, and Dalla Vecchia served four aces for the second time in three matches.

Juliana Tomasoni had five kills and finished with 21 for the day, and Tiffany Phillips served three of XULA's eight first-set aces.

XULA produced a 10-1 first-set run and 10-1 and 9-1 runs in the third.

Earlier in the day, XULA defeated Lawrence Tech 25-20, 25-23, 24-26, 15-25, 15-12. On Friday the Gold Nuggets swept Trinity International, then lost in five sets to NAIA No. 24 Madonna.

It was the 12th time that the Nuggets won twice in one day and the first time since the 2015 Gulf Coast Athletic Conference Tournament.

Next for XULA volleyball will be the third annual Big Easy Blastoff at its Convocation Center. The Gold Nuggets will play Friday at 3 p.m. against Texas Wesleyan and 7 p.m. against Rust. The two-day, five-team, 10-match event will conclude Saturday.

Ed Cassiere, Assistant Athletic Director for Communications

HBCU Football Judgment Day Schedule Week 1


Mississippi College at Clark Atlanta, 6 PM
Fort Valley State at West Georgia, 7 PM
Saint Augustine's at Catawba, 7 PM
Winston-Salem State at UNC Pembroke, 7 PM
Tennessee State at Georgia State, 7 PM, ESPN3
Delaware State at Delaware, 7 PM
Florida A&M vs. Arkansas at Little Rock, AR  8 PM, TV: SEC Network, ESPN


Bethune-Cookman at Miami, FL,  12:30 PM, TV: ACC Network, ESPN
Virginia State at Norfolk State, 6 PM
Morgan State at Towson, 6 PM,  ESPN3
North Carolina A&T at Gardner-Webb, 6 PM
North Central at Duke, 6 PM, TV: ACC Network, ESPN
Hampton at Ohio, 7 PM,  ESPN3
Howard at UNLV, 9 PM

Mississippi Valley State at North Dakota State, 3:30 PM, ESPN3
Alabama A&M at Alabama-Birmingham, 3:30 PM
Morehouse at Arkansas Pine Bluff, 7 PM
Miles at Alcorn State, 7 PM
Jackson State at Texas Christian (TCU), TV: FOX
Grambling State at Tulane, 8 PM, ESPN3
Tuskegee at Alabama State, 8 PM
Prairie View at Texas Southern - Postponed


Charleston (WV) at West Virginia State, 12 Noon
Lincoln (MO) at Langston, 3 PM


Lincoln (PA) at Cheyney, 1 PM
Elizabeth City State at Cenral State (OH), 1 PM
Virginia Union at LIU Post, 1 PM
New Haven at Shaw, 1 PM
Bowie State at Seton Hill, 3 PM
Livingstone at Benedict, 5 PM
Wingate at Johnson C. Smith, 6 PM
Fayetteville State at Chowan, 6 PM


Lane at Texas College, 1 PM
Slippery Rock at Kentucky State, 1:30 PM
Valdosta State at Albany State, 6 PM


MEAC/SWAC Challenge
South Carolina State at Southern, 2:30 PM, TV: ESPN2, ESPN

Monday, August 28, 2017

'If you haven't been through it, you can't even imagine it:' Preparation goes on at Southern as its thoughts go out to Houston

BATON ROUGE, Louisiana -- It was only a year ago that some Southern football players sheltered their families in their apartments after historic flooding inundated Baton Rouge and the surrounding area.

It hasn’t been long, but those days will not soon be forgotten by Southern coach Dawson Odums. What his community endured last August also provided some perspective for the situation Houston now finds itself in, suffering from widespread flooding brought on by Hurricane Harvey.

“If you haven’t been through it, you can’t even imagine it,” Odums said. “Our prayers go out to all those involved.”

Some of those involved are players on his current roster.

Four players on Southern’s roster list Houston as their hometown, and a few others come from surrounding areas also at risk of flooding. They are forced to deal with the disaster from afar.

Odums had a conversation with those players Sunday.


Miami Hurricanes Spotlight: Bethune-Cookman

MIAMI, Florida -- Scouting Report:

The Wildcats finished last season with a 4-6 record (their first losing season since 2009), but came on strong at the end of the year winning four of their last five games. It was a subpar showing by the Wildcats standards as they have won the MEAC Championship in four of the past seven years (2010, 2012, 2013, 2014) and won the HBCU National Championship in 2010 and 2013. Third-year head coach Terry Sims said the team is is expecting to get back to its winning ways this season.

Series History with the Hurricanes:

Bethune-Cookman is 0-3 all-time versus Miami. The first game came in 2011, which was the Wildcats first game against a major college opponent in 86 years. Miami also won in 2012 and in 2015.


Pough: SCSU Bulldogs ready to find out what kind of team they have

ORANGEBURG, South Carolina -- South Carolina State head football coach Oliver “Buddy” Pough is as excited as anyone to see how his Bulldogs perform in the season opener against Southern in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, on Sunday.

It’s partially the fact that it’s the MEAC/SWAC Challenge game and will be a bowl-type atmosphere for his players.

But, more important than that, it will be a new season with a new mix of players who can write their own history, separate from the disappointing 5-6 campaign that S.C. State posted in 2016.

“2017, I’m looking forward to this,” Pough said at his first weekly press conference of the season, on Monday. “This is a big deal for us and a big opener.

“We had kind of a rough year last year. So we are looking to kind of make some amends that way. Got a little bit better schedule, got home games this year. With six home games, that’s like a new sensation, after playing so much on the road last year.”

The Bulldogs only need to pack bags for this weekend to face a Jaguars team that was 8-3 in 2016, before hosting Charleston Southern (Sept. 9) and Johnson C. Smith (Sept. 16) in back-to-back weeks on Willie E. Jeffries Field inside the friendly confines of Oliver C. Dawson Stadium.


WSSU Preview: Rams poised to make another run at CIAA title

WINSTON-SALEM, North Carolina -- Not since the glory days of a few years ago has Winston-Salem State felt this confident going into a football season.

But that confidence is warranted, thanks to 16 of 22 starters returning and depth at every position. The Rams, 9-3 last season and winners of a second straight CIAA title, will once again be the team to beat in the conference.

Coach Kienus Boulware and his experienced coaching staff have assembled a team that hopes to go deeper in the Division II playoffs. Last year, the Rams lost to Long Island Post 48-41 in the first round.

Just how good can the Rams be this season?

“That’s the million-dollar question because you don’t know until you hit the field,” Boulware said. “With us, I would say the sky’s the limit, so we have to have fun, be sound fundamentally and be ready to go in that first game against Pembroke.”


2017 Queen City HBCU Battle of the Bands

SIAC preview: Tuskegee Golden Tigers


1. More playoff power: Tuskegee was ranked fifth in Division II after starting the season 6-0 last year. The Golden Tigers split their final six games, including losses to Kentucky State and Virginia State, to finish 9-3. The Tigers return 16 starters from a season ago, but lost plenty of production from both sides of the ball. Tuskegee head coach Willie Slater said it's hard to predict how his team will fare this season. "I think we'll do well," Slater said. "We haven't been in as good of shape as I expect them to be to start. We've been working on that." The Tigers made the NCAA playoffs for the fourth straight year, losing at North Greenville in the second round.

2. Life without Lacey: Tuskegee will enter the season with a new starting quarterback. Wetumpka native Kevin Lacey started at quarterback for the Tigers the last three seasons, throwing for 2,232 yards and 20 touchdowns during his senior season. Sophomores Jamarcus Ezell and Ahmad Deramus return from last season. "Our guys are doing well," Slater said. "Jamarcus was Lacey's backup last year, and we've got some young guys as well. I think they'll be able to carry the load." Ezell threw for 333 yards and five scores a season ago while Deramus threw only two passes all year.


Bowie State Athletics Mourns the Loss of Head Bowling Coach Ken Scott

BOWIE, Maryland -- It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of our colleague Head Bowling Coach Kenneth Scott. Coach Scott left us suddenly on the morning of Saturday, August 19th. Below are Memorial and Funeral Service arrangements. Please keep his family and our Athletic Department in prayer during this time of sorrow.

Memorial Service
Friday 8/25/17
11 am
Ascension Lutheran Church
7415 Buchanan Street
Landover Hills, MD 20784

Viewing and Funeral
Friday 9/1/17
Jenkins Funeral Home
7474 Landover Road
Landover, MD 20785

Viewing: 12:30-1:30
Funeral Service 1:30-2:30


Sunday, August 27, 2017

SCSU Garvin Releases 2017-18 Men's Basketball Schedule

ORANGEBURG, South Carolina -- South Carolina State head men's basketball coach Murray Garvin has released the 2017-18 Bulldogs schedule, a slate that includes 13 home games and 15 non-conference opponents.

"We are excited to have the likes of Wisconsin, UCLA, N.C. State, Boston College, College of Charleston, Central Florida, Yale, and many others on our out of conference schedule this season," said Garvin. "We were also able to add many in-state schools to our non-conference slate."

The Bulldogs kick off their season with a four-game road swing beginning Nov. 10 against Wisconsin at Madison, WI. Garvin's team then heads to Boston to take on Boston College Nov. 12th, followed by a matchup with Yale Nov. 14th before culminating the trek with a West Coast battle at UCLA Nov. 17th in Los Angeles, CA.

SC State returns to Orangeburg Nov. 21 for its home opener against Central Arkansas, before traveling to Rock Hill, SC to take on Winthrop University (Nov. 26), then hosts Morris College in its second home contest Nov. 28th.

After a Thanksgiving holiday break, Garvin and the Bulldogs hit the road for contests with ACC foe North Carolina State Dec. 2nd in Raleigh, NC and Presbyterian College Dec. 5th in Clinton, SC.

The Bulldogs return home to take on Brevard College on Dec. 7th, travel to Greenville, SC to face Furman Dec. 9th, this will the second year in a row the two teams faceoff on the hardwood with SC State posting an 69-67 victory in their last meeting on Dec. 16, 2016.

SC State host a pair of contests, beginning with Charleston Southern on Dec. 12th and Jacksonville on Dec.16th in Orangeburg at Smith-Hammond-Middleton Memorial Center.

Garvin noted, "It has been awhile since we have squared off against Winthrop, Presbyterian, Charleston Southern and Furman all in the same year. This will also be the third season in a row that we have faced Jacksonville, with the last two games having been decided on the last possession of the game with them winning last year and us beating them in the first matchup."

SC State next embarks on a four-game road swing, starting with intrastate rival College of Charleston Dec.19th, Central Florida Dec.21st in Orlando, and Bethune-Cookman Jan. 3rd, in the league opener, at Daytona Beach, Fla., before wrapping up their road swing Jan 6th at Dover, DE against the Hornets of Delaware State.

The Bulldogs get a break from the road, hosting four-straight conference games at SHM -- Howard Jan. 13th, Maryland-Eastern Shore Jan. 15th, Norfolk State Jan. 20th, and Hampton Jan. 22nd.

MEAC play continues road at Coppin State (Jan. 27th) and Morgan State (Jan.29th), both in Baltimore, MD, and at Savannah State (Feb. 3rd) in Savannah, GA.

Garvin and his squad then hosts Coppin State Feb. 5th and league rival North Carolina A&T Feb.10th before traveling to the Virginia for encounters with Hampton on Feb.17th and Norfolk State on Feb. 19th.

The Bulldogs return to Orangeburg Feb. 24 to host North Carolina Central before finishing their final regular-season road trip in Tallahassee, Fla. against Florida A&M Feb. 26th.

SC State closes out the regular season at home Mar. 1st against Savannah State.

The 2018 MEAC Basketball Tournament will be held March 5-10th at the Norfolk Scope Arena.

"This season's schedule gives us the opportunity to go against some of the best in country, which in turn, should prepare us for an equally challenging MEAC schedule, stated Garvin."


11/10/2017University of WisconsinMadison, WITBADetails
11/12/2017Boston CollegeChestnut Hill, MATBADetails
11/14/2017Yale UniversityNew Haven, CTTBADetails
11/17/2017UCLALos Angeles, CATBADetails
11/21/2017University of Central ArkansasOrangeburg,SC - Smith-Hammond-MiddletonTBADetails
11/26/2017Winthrop UniversityRock Hill, SCTBADetails
11/28/2017Morris College (S.C.)Orangeburg,SC - Smith-Hammond-MiddletonTBADetails
12/2/2017North Carolina State UniversityRaleigh, NCTBADetails
12/5/2017Presbyterian CollegeClinton, SCTBADetails
12/7/2017Brevard CollegeOrangeburg,SC - Smith-Hammond-MiddletonTBADetails
12/9/2017Furman UniversityGreenville, SCTBADetails
12/12/2017Charleston Southern UniversityOrangeburg,SC - Smith-Hammond-MiddletonTBADetails
12/16/2017Jacksonville UniversityOrangeburg,SC - Smith-Hammond-MiddletonTBADetails
12/19/2017College of CharlestonCharleston, SCTBADetails
12/21/2017UCFOrlando, FLTBADetails
1/3/2018*Bethune-Cookman UniversityDaytona Beach, FLTBADetails
1/6/2018*Delaware State UniversityDover, DETBADetails
1/13/2018*Howard UniversityOrangeburg,SC - Smith-Hammond-Middleton4 p.m.Details
1/15/2018*University of Maryland Eastern ShoreOrangeburg,SC - Smith-Hammond-Middleton7:30 p.m.Details
1/20/2018*Norfolk State UniversityOrangeburg,SC - Smith-Hammond-Middleton4 p.m.Details
1/22/2018*Hampton UniversityOrangeburg,SC - Smith-Hammond-Middleton7:30 p.m.Details
1/27/2018*Coppin State UniversityBaltimore, MDTBADetails
1/29/2018*Morgan State UniversityBaltimore, MDTBADetails
2/3/2018*Savannah State UniversitySavannah, GATBADetails
2/5/2018*Coppin State UniversityOrangeburg,SC - Smith-Hammond-Middleton7:30 p.m.Details
2/10/2018*North Carolina A&T State UniversityOrangeburg,SC - Smith-Hammond-Middleton4 p.m.Details
2/17/2018*Hampton UniversityHampton, VATBADetails
2/19/2018*Norfolk State UniversityNorfolk, VATBADetails
2/24/2018*North Carolina Central UniversityOrangeburg,SC - Smith-Hammond-Middleton4 p.m.Details
2/26/2018*Florida A&M UniversityTallahassee, FLTBADetails
3/1/2018*Savannah State UniversityOrangeburg,SC - Smith-Hammond-Middleton7:30 p.m.Details
Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference Tournament
3/5-10/2018*Mid-Eastern Athletic ConferenceNorfolk. VATBADetails

Home Games are in bold
* denotes a Default contest


S.C. State Pough to Hold Bulldog Weekly Press Confeence

ORANGEBURG, South Carolina -- South Carolina State head coach Buddy Pough will start the 2017 campaign, beginning Monday (Aug. 28) with the annual Bulldog Football Press Conference.

The weekly press conference will be held at 12 noon, each Monday during the season in Staley Hall room 224 on the campus of SC State University.

Pough who is entering his 16th season at the helm, is 117-57 overall, and needs just 12 more wins to become the All-Time Winningest Coach in school history.

SC State opens the season Sunday, Sept. 2, in the annual MEAC/SWAC Challenge against Southern University in Baton Rouge, LA. Kickoff is 1:30 p.m. (CT)/2:30 p.m. (ET) and will be televised live on ESPN2,

For additional information on South Carolina State football, call the Office of Athletic Media Relations at (803)-536-7060 or at follow the Bulldogs at

Next Tuesday (8/29) kicks off 13 weeks of MEAC Football Media Teleconferences.
Teleconference Information:

MEDIA ONLY CODE: 1-800-926-9175 (PASSCODE 7264532)
These are new telephone numbers for 2017 so please be mindful.

August 29 • September 5 • September 12 • September 19 • September 26 • October 3 • October 10 • October 17 • October 24 • October 31 • November 7 • November 14 • November 21

10:00 -- MEAC Notes
10:03 -- Fred Farrier, Morgan State
10:13 -- Alex Wood, Florida A&M
10:23 -- Terry Sims, Bethune-Cookman
10:33 -- Kenny Carter, Delaware State
10:43 -- Mike London, Howard
10:53 -- Latrell Scott, Norfolk State
11:03 -- Connell Maynor, Hampton
11:13 -- Erik Raeburn, Savannah State 
11:23 -- Buddy Pough, South Carolina State
11:33 -- Rod Broadway, North Carolina A&T State
11:43 -- Jerry Mack, North Carolina Central


Former Alcorn Interim President Norris Allen Edney Sr. passes

Dr. Edney Sr., served as president of the Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC) from 1979-1984.

LORMAN, Mississippi -- Alcorn State University is saddened to announce former interim president, Dr. Norris Allen Edney, Sr., died Saturday at his home in Natchez, Mississippi.

Edney served as interim president from February 2010 to January 2011 and acting president from December 2013 to March 2014, guiding the university through two presidential transitions. Under Edney’s leadership, Alcorn had a familiar and steady hand to steer it through SACS reaffirmation of accreditation in 2010.

President Alfred Rankins, Jr. shared the news stating, "We are shocked and saddened to hear the news about one of the most respected and long-serving educators in Alcorn’s 146-year history." Rankins continued, “Alcorn has lost a treasured former longtime professor, university leader and dear mentor and friend. We ask the university family to please keep Dr. Edney’s wife, Lillian, their children and families in your thoughts and prayers.”

Throughout his career, Edney served Alcorn in multiple roles beginning as a biology instructor in 1963. He worked his way up to various leadership positions including chairman of the Department of Biology, dean of the School of Arts and Sciences, dean of Graduate Studies, and interim dean of the School of Nursing. He also served as president of the Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC) from 1979-1984.

“Alcorn has lost one of its long-standing pillars with the passing of Dr. Norris Edney," said Donzell Lee, provost and vice president for academic affairs. "Edney was a mentor and role model to many. His guidance, wisdom and most importantly, his presence and voice had an immeasurable impact on the Alcorn family."

Edney also served his community as president of the Natchez-Adams County School Board. He earned an associate degree from Natchez Junior College, a bachelor’s degree in biology from Tougaloo College, a master’s degree in biology from Antioch College in Yellow Springs, Colorado, and a doctorate degree in conservation from Michigan State University.

“Dr. Edney was a remarkable man and a consistent leader who never passed on an opportunity to share his wisdom and experience with those entrusted with the University’s future,” said Marcus Ward, vice president for institutional Advancement and executive director of the ASU Foundation, Inc. “He was extremely generous in offering sound advice to young leaders. For that, we are extremely thankful and extend our deepest sympathies to Mrs. Lillian and to all of the Edney family and friends.”

Vice president for student affairs, Emanuel Barnes, added, "Dr. Edney’s heartfelt love for Alcorn was uncompromising. He was a widely admired and effective administrator throughout Mississippi and the higher education community. Our hearts and prayers are with his wife and their family."

Arrangements will be announced when available.


Alabama NewsCenter 2017 football preview: Alabama A&M University Bulldogs

HUNTSVILLE, Alabama -- Alabama A&M plays the villain in the feel-good story of the football season when the Bulldogs kick off on Sept. 2 against UAB at Legion Field.

And coach James Spady relishes that role.

“I hope we get billed as the bad guy,” he said. “We’re going to do everything we can to spoil their return. That’s our motivation. We understand what the big deal is. And it is a big deal. It’s a great story for college football. For a team to disband or stop playing and then turn around and rise again, I think that’s a heck of a story for college football.

“But we want to put a damper on their rise to prominence,” Spady continued. “That’s our goal. One of the things that motivates us is to spoil this whole thing for them. We’re doing everything we can to get to that point.”

Kickoff for the 2017 college football season is fast approaching. Alabama NewsCenter is talking with coaches across the state about the upcoming campaign. Next up is Spady, the A&M coach whose team was 4-7 in 2016.

Alabama NewsCenter: What is the outlook for this season?


Tennessee State Tigers Hold Mock Game in Hale Stadium

NASHVILLE, Tennessee -- Head coach Rod Reed used his Thursday practice as a mock run-through for Tennessee State's season opener at Georgia State on Aug. 31. The Tigers were not the only unit going through a gameday situation as the Aristocrat of Bands (AOB) marched down 33rd avenue onto John A Merritt boulevard and into Hale Stadium.

With the AOB in its section, the Tigers ran over 70 plays against the scout team. The defense took the field first, holding the scout team down throughout the series, as well as added situations. Before the offense could take the field, freshman kicker Coby Weiss converted on a 50-yard field goal for the scout team.

The top offensive squad for the Tigers moved down the field against the defensive scout team. Treon Harris capped off the first drive with a touchdown pass to DeVon Johnson.


The offense continued to put the pressure on as they scored on the next two possessions. Seth Rowland punched one in from two yards out, while Harris combined with Patrick Smith for the final score.

The mock game continued with the second units getting an opportunity against the scout team. The scouts offense put together a solid drive just before halftime with the big play coming on a 35 yard run by freshman Jordan Bell. The second team defense stood tall as safety Vincent Sellers intercepted Josh Trueheart inside the 10 yard line.

TSU will celebrate the 11 seniors on Friday afternoon at the annual Senior Kickoff Luncheon. The Tigers will take time out of their practice schedule for Fan Day on Saturday.

Head Coach Rod Reed
- On the importance of the mock game
“It was an opportunity to get out here and clean some things up. We wanted to see the game operation and how we would handle things next Thursday night. We had the band out here, we had the clock going, we had the officials out here. We wanted to see what our substitution patterns were going to be, and we probably simulated about a half of football.”

- On what he wants to see in the next week from his team
“We’ve just got to correct the little things. We made some containment errors tonight. Those are things that can be corrected. That’s why we put these kind of things on tape. We tried to simulate what we think we might get from Georgia State to the best of our ability. We’ve just got to go back and clean those things up.”

- On looking forward to a game week
“It’s going to be great to go into a game week. It’s been a long camp, and I think our guys are chomping at the bit to get at somebody else. We’re going to clean some things up. We’re going to have a couple of good practices this week, and we’re going to go down to Georgia on Wednesday and Thursday night, we’re going to turn it loose.”


Hampton University hopes coaching changes leads to winning season


Eighth year (59-26, 14-20 in three seasons with HU).

The Pirates finished 5-3 in the conference for the second consecutive year, but overall it was a losing season that included a third straight defeat to Norfolk State. Maynor's coaching staff will look very different with five new assistants, including Maynor's first offensive coordinator — Duane Taylor. Job one will be finding a starting quarterback.


Yahkee Johnson, Sr. | 5-7 | 160 | RB

He makes up for an obvious lack of size with shiftiness and elusiveness. He led the Pirates with 763 yards on only 135 carries, an average of 5.7 per. He rushed for a career-high 121 yards and a touchdown against Delaware State.

Brendan Cole , Sr. | 6-3 | 215 | Rover

A former Bethel Bruin, Cole was the Pirates' third-leading tackler last season with 54 stops. He had a season-high 11 tackles in a win over South Carolina State. He intercepted a pass and led the Pirates with three fumble recoveries (along with two forced).


Mississippi Valley State tries to find missing link to having winning season

ITTA BENA, Mississippi -- What can you say? It’s been a long three years in Itta Bena – the Delta Devils have only won one football game in the last 1,000 days and change.

But all that could change in 2017, thanks to a defense that may be better than you think and an offense that has matured over the off-season.

Coach Rick Comegy’s squad underwent a youth movement last season, with 26 sophomores and 29 freshmen. Those players are a year older and ready to change the culture at Valley.

The Delta Devils return a capable quarterback in Austin Bray, and Comegy hopes to kick start the running game behind the blocking of second-team All-SWAC offensive lineman Alvin Solomon. All-SWAC defensive back Everett Nicholas is the lone bright spot on a defense that gave up more than 45 points a game last season.

The schedule is brutal early, but features four winnable games against Pine Bluff, Alabama A&M, Virginia-Lynchburg and Jackson State in the middle of the schedule, with the last two at home.


A look inside Jackson State's 2017 football schedule

JACKSON, Mississippi -- At TCU, Sept. 2

The Tigers would love to get a win, but this game is more about bringing home the bacon for an athletic program facing budget cuts across the board. It should give Tony Hughes a chance to see which quarterback will respond well under pressure, at least.

Tennessee State (Memphis), Sept. 9

This is one the Tigers feel like they should have won last year. They had TSU on the ropes, up by a touchdown in the third quarter of last year’s Southern Heritage Classic. This is a game they’d like to flip, and getting revenge could indicate they are on the right track for a winning season.

At Grambling, Sept. 16

Just how good is that Jackson State defense? We’ll find out in Week 3 when the Tigers travel just west of Ruston, Louisiana for a matchup with the reigning SWAC champs in both teams’ conference opener. Grambling quarterback Devante Kincade lit the Tigers up last year in a 35-16 win in Jackson.

Arkansas-Pine Bluff, Sept. 23

After a grueling first three games, the Tigers return home for a winnable game against a conference foe that won just one game last year and has shown little signs of improvement. This game should give JSU a chance to get a conference win in front of its home crowd for the first time in 2017.


2017 SWAC Football television schedule announced

BIRMINGHAM, Alabama -- The Southwestern Athletic Conference released its 2017 football television schedule on Thursday which includes 28 contests that will spread across 10 different networks.

All 10 of the member institutions will be featured on either the ESPN family of networks, ABC, Fox Sports Network, AT&T Sports Net, Peachtree TV, Stadium TV, beIN, the local CBS affiliate WHNT in Huntsville, or the NBC Sports Network. All games are available in standard high-definition.

Among some of the highlighted contests, Texas Southern will kick off the college football season by playing in the first game of the Division I college football slate on Saturday, August 26 against Florida A&M in Tallahassee at 11 a.m. CT. on ESPNU.

Southern University will open their season on Sunday, Sept. 3 in the 13th annual MEAC/SWAC Challenge when the Jaguars host South Carolina State at Ace W. Mumford Stadium. The opener will be known as the Battle on the Bluff in Baton Rouge, La. Kickoff will air live at 1:30 p.m. CT on ESPN2.

Four days following at 6:30 p.m. CT on ESPNU, Prairie View A&M will be featured on the first Thursday night football match up on Sept. 7 when it hosts STATS FCS No. 3 ranked Sam Houston State of the Southland Conference for a 6:30 p.m. kick.

In week three, Jackson State travels to take on the defending SWAC Champions and No. 21 Grambling State on the newly installed artificial turf at Eddie G. Robinson Memorial Stadium Sept. 16 on ESPN3 at 6 p.m.

Alabama State third-year head coach Brian Jenkins hosts defending SWAC Eastern Division Champion Alcorn State for a Thursday night showdown on Oct. 5 on ESPNU at 6:30 p.m. CT. The 76th Magic City Classic between Alabama A&M and Alabama State will take place in Birmingham, Ala. on Oct. 28 on ESPN3 with a time to be determined. The game will be tape delayed for a broadcast on ESPNU as well. Alabama A&M defeated Alabama State in a one-point overtime thriller in last year’s edition of the game.

SWAC Western Division rivals clash when Grambling State and Southern square off in New Orleans, La. for the Bayou Classic on the NBC Sports Network at 4 p.m. on November 25. The teams finished No. 1 and No. 2 in the SWAC West Division standings a year ago with the division title being decided in this game last season.

The postseason starts with the final edition of the SWAC Football Championship in Houston, Texas on Saturday, Dec. 2 at NRG Stadium. The SWAC Championship game began in 1999 and will forgo the game starting in 2018. The Final Judgement will pit the traditional East and West Division Champions against one another and will be available to also watch on ESPNU. Kickoff time is set for 3:30 p.m.

The TV line up concludes with the Celebration Bowl Saturday, December 16, at the new Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, Ga. The multi-purpose retractable roof stadium serves as the home of the Atlanta Falcons of the National Football League (NFL) and Atlanta United FC of Major League Soccer (MLS). The state-of-the-art stadium is set to open on Aug. 26 when the Falcons host the Arizona Cardinals in an exhibition game. It is also scheduled to serve as the hosts of Super Bowl LIII in 2019. Kickoff for the Celebration Bowl is set for 11:00 a.m. CT on ABC.

2017 SWAC football telecast schedule

Date Game Site Time (CT) Network

Saturday, Aug. 26 Texas Southern at FAMU Tallahassee, Fla. 11 a.m. ESPNU

Saturday, Sept. 2 Alabama A&M at UAB Birmingham, Ala. 2:30 p.m. WHNT (Local)

Saturday, Sept. 2 Miss. Valley St. at N. Dakota St. Fargo, ND 2:30 p.m. ESPN3

Saturday, Sept. 2 Grambling State at Tulane New Orleans, La. 7 p.m. ESPN3

Saturday, Sept. 2 Jackson State at TCU Fort Worth, Texas 7 p.m. FOX Sports Network

Saturday, Sept. 2 Prairie View at Texas Southern Houston, Texas 8 p.m. AT&T Sports Net (Local)

Sunday, Sept. 3 S.C. State at Southern Baton Rouge, La. 1:30 p.m. ESPN2

Thursday, Sept. 7 Sam Houston St. at Prairie View Prairie View, Texas 6:30 p.m. ESPNU

Thursday, Sept. 7 Houston Baptist at Texas Southern Houston, Texas 7:30 p.m. AT&T Sports Net (Local)

Saturday, Sept. 9 Alabama A&M at Vanderbilt Nashville, Tenn. 3 p.m. SECN Alternate

Saturday, Sept. 9 Alabama State at Troy Troy, Ala. 5 p.m. ESPN3

Saturday, Sept. 9 Miss. Valley St. at S. Illinois Carbondale, Ill. 6 p.m. ESPN3

Saturday, Sept. 9 Southern at Southern Miss Hattiesburg, Miss. 6 p.m. Stadium TV

Saturday, Sept. 9 Jackson State at Tennessee State Memphis, Tenn. 6 p.m. Fox Sports Southeast

Saturday, Sept. 9 Arkansas-Pine Bluff at Akron Akron, Ohio 6:30 p.m. ESPN3

Saturday, Sept. 9 Alcorn State at FIU Miami, Fla. 6:30 p.m. beIN Sports

Saturday, Sept. 16 Alabama A&M at South Alabama Mobile, Ala. 6 p.m. ESPN3

Saturday, Sept. 16 Arkansas-Pine Bluff at Ark. St. Jonesboro, Ark. 6 p.m. ESPN3

Saturday, Sept. 16 Jackson State at Grambling St. Grambling, La. 6 p.m. ESPN3 / ESPNU (tape delayed)

Friday, Sept. 29 Alcorn State at Texas Southern Houston, Texas 8 p.m. AT&T Sports Net (Local)

Thurs., Oct. 5 Alcorn State at Alabama St. Montgomery, Ala. 6:30 p.m. ESPNU

Saturday, Oct. 7 Texas Southern at Kennesaw St. Kennesaw, Ga. 6 p.m. PeachTree TV (Local)

Saturday, Oct. 14 Alabama State at Texas Southern Houston, Texas 2 p.m. AT&T Sports Net (Local)

Saturday, Oct. 28 Alabama A&M vs. Alabama St. Birmingham, Ala. TBA ESPN3 / ESPNU (tape delayed)

Saturday, Nov. 11 Southern at Texas Southern Houston, Texas 5 p.m. AT&T Sports Net (Local)

Saturday, Nov. 25 Southern vs. Grambling State New Orleans, La. 4 p.m. NBC Sports

Saturday, Dec. 2 SWAC Championship Houston, Texas 3:30 p.m. ESPNU

Saturday, Dec. 16 Celebration Bowl Atlanta, Ga. 11 a.m. ABC

Schedule subject to change.


Alcorn State is once again the favorite to win the SWAC East

LORMAN, Mississippi -- Alcorn State is the favorite to win the SWAC East for a fourth-straight year, but that doesn’t mean second-year coach Fred McNair doesn’t have his work cut out for him.

After a tumultuous off-season full of off-the-field distractions, the Braves are anxious to get back on the field and get back to winning. And there’s plenty of reason to think they’ll do just that.

They return two capable quarterbacks, first-team All-SWAC guard Timothy Gardner and second-team All-SWAC tailback De’Lance Turner. First-team All-SWAC selection Michael Brooks leads a solid defensive line and O.J. O’Neal anchors a secondary that was second in the league in stopping the pass last year.

The schedule sets up nicely, with an adjustment game against Miles College before they jump into the meat of the schedule with Florida International, McNeese State and Southern.

Three questions with Fred McNair

Do you think the guys coming back will use the motivation from losing the SWAC Championship game?


SWAC preview: Alabama State Hornets


1. ‘Main course’: Alabama State head coach Brian Jenkins said he’s tired of just being in the mix for a conference title. The Hornets finished 4-7 last season, posting their first losing mark since 2009. This season, the Hornets were picked to finish second in the SWAC East behind Alcorn State. “It’s time for us to be in the main course,” Jenkins said. “The East is tough, just like the West. There’s a lot of parody in the league, but I think that’s a good thing. That means that if we’re the last team standing, we’ve earned the right to be called (SWAC) champion.” ASU hasn’t earned that distinction since 2004 and hasn’t reached the SWAC title game since 2011.

2. Next man up? Alabama State has rushed for over 2,000 yards in each of the last four seasons. Last year, the Hornets were once again tops in the SWAC with 220.5 rushing yards per game. Hornets junior Alex Anderson has been plagued by injuries throughout this career, but Jenkins said Anderson is finally healthy enough to carry the load. “Alex has come in 10-12 pounds heavier," Jenkins said. "Last year, he tried to play through some injuries. This year, he has a better understanding of the offense. With the added weight and his health, we expect some big things from him."

3. Defensive reload: ASU has a new defensive coordinator in ...


Hampton hopes to continue MEAC upswing with swarming defense

HAMPTON, Virginia -- Brendan Cole and Steven Smith are determined to end their Hampton careers by keeping the Pirates on an upward trend.

Following a string of losing seasons, both overall and in the MEAC, Hampton finished 5-3 in conference the past two years.

“We took a big step last year in leadership,” said Cole, a safety and grad student. “The year before we had our first winning season in about three years, so we built off that. Now we’re trying to take that next step, which is just togetherness.”

The defense, which ranked second in the MEAC in yards allowed in 2016, returns most of its starters. Cole and Smith – a senior linebacker and former Salem High standout – anchor the swarming D.

“We fly around and everybody runs to the ball,” Smith said. “Hustle, determination and not giving up.”

While both offense and defense finished in the top five in nearly every category, Smith believes the two weren’t synced in enough games to top the team standings.


For Norfolk State this year, "there can’t be any more excuses"

NORFOLK, Virginia -- No more excuses.

That’s how tight end Demetreus Ferebee sees it.

As Norfolk State enters its third year of the Latrell Scott regime, most players on the roster are his recruits. And while Ferebee, a redshirt senior, is one of the few holdovers from former coach Pete Adrian’s guys, he recognizes this year should be a pivot toward improvement.

“There can’t be any more excuses,” Ferebee said. “We gotta make it happen.”

The Spartans finished 4-7 overall in each of Scott’s first two seasons, sandwiched in the middle of the MEAC standings. In a favorable light, the first two years were mostly a transition period as new and old recruits mingled.

“The first two years, we were polishing up and getting guys ready,” said Nigel Chavis, a redshirt sophomore defensive end/linebacker. “To me, the third year is when the work shows.”


Saturday, August 26, 2017

What we learned from FAMU's 29-7 victory over Texas Southern

TALLAHASSEE, Florida -- Ryan Stanley deserves to be FAMU’s starter

Redshirt sophomore quarterback Ryan Stanley remains undefeated at home and Florida A&M’s starter (4-0). He got off to a somewhat shaky start on Saturday against Texas Southern, but he more than made up for it as the game went on.

Vincent Jefferies saw a bit of time – like head coach Alex Wood said he would – but Saturday was Stanley’s game. He finished the game 19 for 32 with 217 yards and a touchdown and didn’t turn the ball over. He also had a rushing touchdown.

Jefferies completed one pass for five yards, but had a 12-yard rushing touchdown.

“We’ve got confidence in Ryan,” Wood said. “We all have work to do, the whole operation, but he did well today. I thought Vince came in and did well protecting the ball. There’s some systemic things we need to work with for both of them, but we’ll get that done.”


Ryan Stanley shines in FAMU's season opener against Texas Southern

TALLAHASSEE, Florida -- For redshirt sophomore quarterback Ryan Stanley, home-field advantage is real.

There’s some magic in Bragg Memorial Stadium for Florida A&M’s second-year starter. He’s undefeated at home in four starts, and has only turned the ball over twice as a starter in Tallahassee.

He led the Rattlers to yet another home victory Saturday against SWAC opponent Texas Southern in front of 15,401 fans as FAMU dismantled the Tigers 29-7 in the first game of the FCS season, the inaugural Jake Gaither Classic at Bragg.

For Stanley, it was just another day in his favorite place to play. He finished the game 19 for 32 for 217 yards and two touchdowns (one rushing, one passing).

“I don’t know maybe it’s just the atmosphere,” Stanley said with a smile after the game. “Great fans, I don’t know… there’s something about Bragg. I don’t know what it is.”

It was FAMU’s first season-opening victory at home since 2011, the team’s first season-opening victory overall since 2013.


Jake Gaither Classic Half-Time: FAMU Marching 100 vs. Tx So Ocean of Soul Marching Band

XULA Gold Nuggets defeat Lawrence Tech in 5 sets at UMD

DEARBORN, Mich. — Senior Juliana Tomasoni and freshman Jaida Dowd combined for 25 kills Saturday to lead Xavier University of Louisiana to a 25-20, 25-23, 24-26, 15-25, 15-12 volleyball victory against Lawrence Tech in the UM-Dearborn Early Bird.

The Gold Nuggets start the season 2-1 for the first time since 2013. They gave Lawrence Tech its first loss of the year.

Tomasoni produced 16 kills, a season high, and two aces. Dowd had a career-best nine kills.

Also contributing to XULA's 53 kills were Hasani Salaam with eight, Adili Rikondja with seven and Lauryn Taylor with six. Eva Le Guillou served two aces. Taylor and Le Guillou are freshmen.

The Gold Nuggets missed a chance for a 3-set sweep when the Blue Devils (3-1) rallied from a 21-16 deficit in the third. Lawrence Tech forced a fifth set after opening the fourth with a 13-1 run.

"Started strong," XULA head coach Pat Kendrick said. "Backed off our intensity in the third and had to fight our way back to win."

XULA scored five of the final six points in the fifth to wipe out Lawrence Tech's 11-10 lead.

It was the first time in three years that XULA played consecutive 5-set matches and the first time ever that the Gold Nuggets went to five sets on consecutive days. NAIA No. 24 Madonna beat XULA 15-11 in the fifth Friday evening.

Ed Cassiere, Assistant Athletic Director for Communications