Your BASN Guide to HBCU Football: Week Eight

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Updated: October 21, 2016
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By Anthony McClean, Editor In Chief Emeritus

 

NEW HAVEN (BASN) — Through the first eight weeks of the HBCU football season, only one team stands with a perfect record — the Golden Tigers of Tuskegee University. At 6-0 (1-0 SIAC West) Willie Slater’s crew has not only set the pace for their conference but all Division II teams this season.

 

Tuskegee, who has achieved their highest ranking in school history, is coming off of an off week following their victory over Morehouse two weeks ago. Following the win, the Golden Tigers were able to maintain their rankings nationally in both the AFCA (5th) and D2football.com (10th) weekly polls.

 

They’ll meet Kentucky State (3-4, 2-0 SIAC West) Saturday 1:00 pm ET inside Cleve L. Abbott Memorial Alumni Stadium, with more than a homecoming victory at stake. The division title hangs in the balance as the Thoroughbreds are undefeated with just one west division game remaining, while Tuskegee has three West Division contests remaining on the schedule.

 

Kentucky State comes into Tuskegee in search of a victory that would wrap up the West Division title for the Thorobreds; while Tuskegee controls their destiny in search of the SIAC West Division title – win out, or get some help along the way. Last weekend, KSU rallied to defeat Miles College 28-24 in the Thoroughbreds’ homecoming at Alumni Stadium.

 

The win snapped KSU’s six-game losing streak to the Golden Bears.

 

They’ll be looking to snap another losing skid entering Saturday’s contest. The Golden Tigers have won the last four meetings and have won 17 of the last 18 meetings between the two schools. The game can be seen on the Tuskegee Digital Network beginning with pregame at 12:30 pm, and can also be heard on XM/Sirius Radio, as it will be carried by HSRN.

 

TRIVIA QUESTION

 

Virginia Union quarterback Shawheem Dowdy threw for 380 yards in last week’s game against Chowan. Who holds the Panthers’ record for the most passing yards in a game?

 

OTHER KEY GAMES TO WATCH

 

N.C. A&T at HOWARD

 

Two of the nation’s best running backs — A&T’s Tarik Cohen and Howard’s Anthony Philyaw — will go head-to-head against each other in the Bison’s homecoming game at Washington, D.C. Philyaw is second behind Cohen in rushing in the MEAC at 126.2 yards per game. The Aggies (5-1, 3-0 MEAC) have won four in a row in the series and a win Saturday would give A&T its longest winning streak over the Bison (1-6, 1-3) in series history. However, the last time the Aggies were in Washington, D.C., for Howard’s homecoming back in 2011, they lost 35-28. The Bison are coming off a 14-9 loss to South Carolina State where they only allowed the Bulldogs one offensive touchdown. The consensus No. 1 team in HBCU football, the Aggies are ranked No. 14 in the FCS STATS Media poll as well as the NCAA FCS Coaches’ poll. It is the 13th straight week the Aggies have been ranked nationally.

 

BOWIE STATE at VIRGINIA UNION

 

The Bulldogs (5-2 overall, 4-0 CIAA) sit atop the Northern as the division’s only undefeated team against conference opponents. The Panthers will have to move past last week’s defeat to Chowan with a victory over BSU to remain in contention for the division title. Meanwhile, the Bulldogs have to win to remain in a comfortable position atop the Division. A win for the Panthers would bring both teams 4-1 in conference play and put more pressure on each program with only two weeks remaining in the regular season. The game, scheduled for 1:00 pm ET, can be seen live on ESPN3 or WatchESPN.

 

GRAMBLING STATE at MISSISSIPPI VALLEY STATE

 

Because of a quirk in their schedule, the last time the Tigers (3-1, 3-0 SWAC) played a game (an October 1st win at the State Fair Classic), the MLB playoffs hadn’t even started. Needless to say, a lot has happened since then. Most notably, the two-year contract extension of head coach Broderick Fobbs which was announced by the school earlier this week. As for on the field, GSU has been getting it done with their Red Zone defense. The Tigers currently rank fifth in the FCS with a percentage of .600. They have also given up the least amount of first downs in the nation with 72. They travel to Itta Bena Saturday to meet a winless Delta Devils team (0-7, 0-5 SWAC) that hasn’t won since last November and has already surrendered 322 points this season.

 

CLARK ATLANTA at ALBANY STATE

 

This SIAC battle will have a big say as to who’ll take control of the Eastern Division race. With five wins thus far, the Panthers (5-2, 3-2) have the most wins in a season since 2008 (6-5). That season also marks the most recent winning season and the last time CAU had a four-game winning streak. The Panthers’ last victory over ASU came in 2001, a narrow 17-14 win.  Since then, the Golden Rams (3-3, 2-1) have won the last 14 games. ASU, who’ve won two straight, are coming off a 26-21 road win at Morehouse College. Last week’s win over Benedict College marked a historic game for the Panthers as Clark Atlanta suited up for the 800th football game in program history. Saturday’s game, scheduled for 2:00 pm ET, can be seen live on the Aspire Network.

OTHER NEWS

 

Alcorn State University failed to monitor its progress-toward-degree certification process when it improperly certified 28 student-athletes in 11 sports over the course of four academic years, according to a decision issued by a Division I Committee on Infractions panel.

The panel prescribed two years of probation, a $5,000 fine retained by the university for compliance education and a vacation of records for games in which ineligible student-athletes competed.

This case was resolved through the summary disposition process, a cooperative effort during which the involved parties collectively submit the case to the Committee on Infractions in written form. The NCAA enforcement staff and the university must agree to the facts and overall level of the case in order to use this process instead of a formal hearing.

The university and members of the NCAA staff discovered the incorrect certifications during an NCAA Division I Academic Performance Program audit. The staff members involved in the process did not understand the steps in the certification, which led to the registrar entering requirements incorrectly and the compliance director erroneously certifying eligibility based on the total hours earned, not those hours that were applicable to student-athletes’ degrees. The panel found the university did not provide adequate rules education to its academic advisors, which resulted in the school failing to monitor its certification process.

Penalties prescribed by the panel include the following:

  •     Public reprimand and censure for the university.
  •     A two-year probation period from Oct. 19, 2016, through Oct. 18, 2018.
  •     A vacation of records for games in which ineligible student-athletes competed. After the release of the public report, the university will identify the competitions affected.
  • A $5,000 fine that will be retained by the university to be used for compliance education of the registrar, academic advisors and compliance staff.

Members of the Committee on Infractions are drawn from NCAA membership and members of the public. The members of the panel who reviewed this case are Britton Banowsky, executive director of the College Football Playoff Foundation; Bobby Cremins, former head men’s basketball coach at Georgia Tech; Alberto Gonzales, dean of the law school at Belmont University and former attorney general of the United States; Thomas Hill, senior policy advisor to the president of Iowa State University; Gary L. Miller, chancellor at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay; Joseph Novak, former head football coach at Northern Illinois University; and David Roberts, chief hearing officer for this case and vice president for athletics compliance at the University of Southern California.

 

TRIVIA ANSWER

 

Lamar Little threw for a Virginia Union record 455 yards against Tuskegee on December 1, 2007.

 

 

 

Anthony McClean can be reached via email at anthonymcclean1962@gmail.com.

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