announces preseason HBCU All-America team

By BASN Wire Services
Updated: August 19, 2009

NEW YORK — Two of black college football’s most explosive offensive weapons — Southern quarterback Bryant Lee and South Carolina State running back William Ford — are just a part of the 2009 Preseason HBCU All-America Team. The preseason team is made up of 27 of the top Black college football players in the country. The voters are comprised of some of America’s top writers who cover black college football. Lee, the 2008 SWAC Offensive Player of the Year and first team-all-SWAC selection, led the SWAC in completions (217), attempts (352), passing yards (2,682) and touchdown passes (20) while throwing just seven interceptions.

The 6-foot-2, 195-pounder was seventh in the conference and second in rushing yards among quarterbacks with 534 yards (on 139 attempts) with six touchdowns.

He had four games of at least 300 yards passing (including one 400-yard game), and posted back-to-back games where he accounted for at least five touchdowns.

As for Ford, the 2008 and MEAC Offensive Player of the Year, led the MEAC and ranked 13th in the nation in rushing with 1,499 touchdowns.

The senior, who earned All-MEAC first team honors and was a second team All-American selection, averaged 6.1 yards per carry with 13 touchdowns a year ago.

Both Lee and Ford were tabbed as their conference’s preseason offensive players of the year. Joining them in the backfield is Prairie View A&M standout Donald Babers.

The offensive line is comprised of Johnny Culbreath from South Carolina State; Robert Okeafor of Florida A&M; Revay Smith of Grambling State; Robert Norris of Morgan State; and Michael Stevens of Tuskegee.

The tight end is Lane College’s Robert Smith while Juamorris Stewart of Southern and Dexter Manley of Elizabeth City State make up the receiving corps.

On the defensive side of the ball, Norfolk State defensive back Terrell Whitehead and Grambling State lineman Christian Anthony — both tabbed as preseason defensive players of the year by their conferences — make up this season’s talented crew.

Both players were also All-Americans last season and are on this year’s Buck Buchanan Watch List.

Anthony was a first-team all-SWAC selection in 2008 and the Defensive Most Valuable Player of the SWAC Football Championship game. Last season he posted 55 tackles (17 for loss) and eight sacks for the SWAC and HBCU National Champions.

He was tied for fourth in the league in sacks last season and was sixth in the Conference in tackles for loss. In the SWAC Championship game, Anthony posted seven tackles (three for loss), two sacks and two QB hurries in the win over Jackson State.

He’s joined on the defensive line by Justin Lawrence of Morgan State; Jeremy Maddox of Alabama A&M and Dexter Jackson, Bethune-Cookman.

The linebackers are Mike Alphonse of Norfolk State; DeJuan Fulgham of Texas Southern; and Andrew Eggleton of West Virginia State.

As for Whitehead, he earned the MEAC’s Defensive Player of the Year honors in 2008 after leading the Spartans with 83 tackles (44 solo) in 2008. He finished tied for third in the conference in passes defended with four interceptions and 11 pass deflections.

Whitehead is joined in the secondary by Kenneth Anio of Grambling State; Anthony Beck of Prairie View A&M; and Darren McKhan, Morgan State, a 2008 All-American.

The specialists are placekicker Jeremy Licea of Alabama A&M; punter Jahmal Blanchard of Hampton; kick returner: LeRoy Vann of Florida A&M; and punt returner: William Osbourne of Texas Southern.

The HBCU Preseason All-American team is a collaboration between DWCommunications, LLC (the parent company of and The Black Athlete Sports Network (


Running backs: Donald Babers, Prairie View A&M; William Ford, South Carolina State.

Lineman: Johnny Culbreath, South Carolina State; Robert Okeafor, Florida A&M; Revay Smith, Grambling State; Robert Norris, Morgan State; Michael Stevens, Tuskegee.

Tight end: Robert Smith, Lane College.

Wide receivers: Juamorris Stewart, Southern; Dexter Manley, Elizabeth City State.

DEFENSE Lineman: Christian Anthony, Grambling State; Justin Lawrence, Morgan State; Jeremy Maddox, Alabama A&M; Dexter Jackson, Bethune-Cookman.

Linebackers: Mike Alphonse, Norfolk State; DeJuan Fulgham, Texas Southern; Andrew Eggleton, West Virginia State.

Defensive backs: Kenneth Anio, Grambling State; Anthony Beck, Prairie View A&M; Darren McKhan, Morgan State; Terrell Whitehead, Norfolk State.

SPECIALISTS Placekicker: Jeremy Licea, Alabama A&M.

Punter: Jahmal Blanchard, Hampton.

Kick returner: LeRoy Vann, Florida A&M.

Punt returner: William Osbourne, Texas Southern.

HONORABLE MENTION OFFENSE Quarterback: Curtis Pulley, Florida A&M.

Running backs: Devan James, Morgan State; Winston Thompson, Clark-Atlanta.

Lineman: Mikeal Harshaw, Jackson State; Dillon Kistner, Fayetteville State; Xavier Manuel, Alabama A&M; Eric Martiner, Stillman College; Chauncey Perry, Virginia Union.

Tight end: Karvin Gwaltney, Elizabeth City State; Sherron Childress, Norfolk State.

Wide receivers: Thomas Harris, Alabama A&M; William Osbourne, Texas Southern; Kevin Elliott, Florida A&M.

DEFENSE Lineman: Sam Washington, Jackson State; Danny Anderson, Tuskegee; Phillip Stevenson, Saint Augustine’s; Jarvis Stokes, Saint Paul’s, Marcus Winston, Clark-Atlanta.

Linebackers: Adrian Hardy, Alabama State; Hurley Hemphill, Virginia Union; Marcos Esquivel, Fayetteville State; James Graham, Benedict College.

Defensive backs: Kevin Thornton, Arkansas-Pine Bluff; Justin Hannah, Tuskegee; Eugene Clifford, Tennessee State; Justin Hamilton, Elizabeth City State; Derrick Shelton, Lane College.

SPECIALISTS Placekicker: Eric Perri, Jackson State; Justin Parker, Virginia State.

Punter: Pedro Ventura, Prairie View A&M; Daniel Mendez, Fayetteville State.

Kick returner: Richard Medlin, Fayetteville State; William Osbourne, Texas Southern Punt returner: LeRoy Vann, Florida A&M; Robert Brown, Shaw.