PVU vs. TSU Heads Black Colleges Rivalries At Reliant Stadium

By Joe Booker
Updated: November 20, 2005

TEXAS—Reliant Stadium is the place to be this weekend in the Space City. Four of black colleges’ biggest rivalries– Prairie View, Texas Southern, Grambling and Southern— will take place at Reliant Stadium in Houston.

The Prairie View Panthers and Texas Southern Tigers will kickoff the weekend at 1 p.m. Friday Grambling and Southern will follow at 1 p.m. Saturday in a national NBC televised game.

TSU is (1-8, 1-9) and PVU is (2-6, 4-6). PVU won last year 25-7 for the first time since 1988 (13-10). GSU is (7-0, 8-1) and SU is 4-4, 4-4) GSU won last year 24-13. It was GSU first win (30-20), since 2001.

Tragedy brought big events to Houston

The sad and tragic events of hurricane Katrina and Rita is the reason the schools changed their original dates. It so happens, that those dates have fallen in Houston on the same weekend TSU and PVU were original scheduled to play Labor Day weekend. GSU and SU were scheduled to play Thanksgiving weekend at the Superdome in New Orleans The damage that was done by Rita forced people to evacuate New Orleans The Superdome has to be repaired.

This is more than a game—it’s a game and a half

This not just a weekend for black college football— it is an event–it is a happening. It is a game and a half. It will be black college Battle of the Bands at its best. Most fans attend the game to see the bands.

Yes folks, pull up a chair, order your popcorn, peanuts and favorite soft drink and get ready to “party.” Reliant Stadium is the place to be.

It will be a fashion show that you have never seen before. You will see Hip-Hop styles and you will see conservative styles. You will witness styles that you have never seen before. But, you haven’t seen an event like this before in Houston, either. Sorry Houston Super Bowl and World Series fans, you didn’t see anything like what you will see this weekend.

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Nicks vs. Durley

Prairie View and Texas Southern have been after each other’s hide since 1946. It has become one of the most bitters rivalries in college football. The rivalries between Alexander Durley (TSU) and W. J. “Billy” Nicks (PVU) are the most memorable of all rivalries between the two schools.

The Nicks vs. Durley rivalry began in 1952. In 14 (1952-64) meetings between the two coaches, Nicks holds a 9-4 lead Nicks won five national tiles and 7 SWAC titles during that span. Before coming to PV, he won 3 national titles and 4 conference titles at Morris Brown, which gives him 8 national titles and 11 conference tiles in less than 25 years as a head coach. Eddie Robinson of Grambling won 8 national titles in 57-years of coaching. Nicks has won more national titles and conference titles than any college coach in Texas colleges’ football history. When he retired in 1965, Nicks had a winning record against every school he played.

Durley was hired by TSU in 1950. In 1952, Durley coached TSU to its only undefeated (10-0-1) record and national championship. He ended 14-years of coaching at TSU with a 98-48-6 record, which is the best in TSU coaching ranks.

TSU leads the overall series, 39-19-1

Labor Day Classic

Since the Labor Day Classic started in

1985, TSU holds a 17-2 record.

Records: PVU (2-6, 4-6), (TSU 1-8, 1-9)

2004: PVU won 25-7, for the first time since their 13-10 win in 1988)


PVU: Henry Frazier (7-14 at PVU), overall (33-38)

TSU: Steve Wilson (1-19 at TSU), overall (79-87)

The Panthers are having their best season since they were 6-5 in 1976. They have won three of their last five games. The Tigers continue to struggle after a 0-10 record last year. They have not won since upsetting Alabama A&M at Huntsville, back on October, and have lost their last 6 games.


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Robinson vs. Munford

The late coach Arnett Munford (Southern) former coach Eddie Robinson (Grambling), met only three times. Munford coached at Southern from 1936-1961. He won 176 games and lost 14. He coached against Robinson in 1959, 1960 and 1961 and won all three games.

Robinson retired in 1997, after 57-years as head coach at Grambling. He won more games (408) than any coach in college football history. Robinson won 6 SWAC titles and tied 10. He won 8 national titles.

Southern leads the overall series, 28-25-0.

Bayou Classic XXX11

Southern leads 16-15

Records: GSU (7-0, 8-1), (SU 4-4, 4-4)

2004: GSU won 24-13, for the first time since they won 30-20 in 2001


GSU: Melvin Spears (14-6-0 at GSU), overall (14-6-0)

SU: Pete Richardson (109-42-0, at SU), overall (151-5-1)

Melvin Spears has the G-Men on a high. They are setting on top on the Western Division in the Southwestern Athletic Conference with a 7-0 record. Tigers quarterback Bruce Eugene has thrown for more yards per game (409.4) and touchdowns (40) than any quarterback in the country. He has thrown only three interceptions in 327 attempts. The Tigers average 466.5 yards per game.

The Bayou Classic was founded in 1974, by former Grambling Public Relations Director Collie Nicholson. Nicholson is in the SWAC Hall of Fame and Louisiana Hall of Fame.