HBCU football coaching is a stepping stone for Deion Sanders

Deion Sanders is gaining a lot of attention, but what about the other HBCU head coaches,

Deion Sanders is gaining a lot of attention, but what about the other HBCU head coaches,
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The attention Deion Sanders has brought to black college football programs has historically been unparalleled. Interest is at an all-time high and Sanders has won Expanding exposure to talent at HBCU programs. Sanders specifically addressed the players, but similar sentiments could be said to the HBCU coaches. Training at HBCUs has always been an obstacle to career advancement before or after integration. Two seasons in Prime Coach’s transformation for Jackson State football, Power 5 shows like Nebraska, Georgia Tech and Auburn are seriously considering him for their respective loopholes. But he is an anomaly.

Division I HBCU football exists in its own bubble that mainstream college football athletic directors turn a blind eye to. The NCAA and its member conferences do not have a Rooney Rule. As a result, there’s little chance of a stepping stone coming to fruition for black college football coaches, but that’s especially true for HBCU head coaches who aren’t on the coaching carousel. Promotions for jobs in the Football Bowl Subdivision come with higher salaries, larger staff, huge budgets, more resources, a higher caliber of talent – as well as increased oversight. However, for coaching talents without Coach Prime, those opportunities are rare.

More than a dozen head coaches have been hired for head coach positions at FCS level and below over the past decade. Dino Babers, one of the few black coaches who graduated from FCS football to FBS, beat Syracuse 6-0. More coaches have jumped from even lower levels in Division II or Division III to FBS jobs than there are minority coaches from HBCU conferences who have done the same. on one’s own.

Kansas’ hire of Lance Leipold from Wisconsin-Whitewater, where he’d won multiple Division III titles, was a resounding success. LSU’s Brian Kelly made a name for himself in Division II Grand Valley State before being dropped by Central Michigan.

For those trying in HBCU football, they have to wander outside the walls of the SWAC and MEAC Conferences to even get on the main radar. Usually, that means being fired. Offensive coordinator Howard Brennan Marion’s “Go-Go” offense put him on the track and his offensive principles have become one of the most researched programs in the nation. But Marion himself has yet to reach the position of offensive coordinator. Last season, he coached wide receivers at Pittsburgh – where Jordan Addison won the Fred Biletnikoff title, given to the best receiver in the country – while this year Marion was the passing game coordinator at Texas. He should at least be an offensive coordinator somewhere by now.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Todd Bowles, who wants us to close the race and coaching discussion now that he’s through the door, took a detour from the defensive coordinator at Morehouse and Grambling State to the NFL. The Eddie Robinson Award, given to the best coach in college football, is named after the most successful coach in the long history of HBCU football. Since college football integration, programs at PWIs have produced talent who used to play at HBCUs, but have refused to hire HBCU coaches.

The only HBCU head coach in the past 60 years to be hired by an FBS program was Jay Hopson of Alcorn State in 2016. This is Jay Hopson.

The hiring of Hopson as the first white head coach in SWAC Conference history made national headlines in 2012. Then, after four seasons, 32 wins and 17 losses – including including his final game against North Carolina A&T in the Celebration Bowl – Hopson was quietly exposed by Miss South.

The winning sideline head coach for Hopson’s final game at Alcorn State was Rod Broadway, 56. In 15 seasons, Broadway set a 125-45 record, leading A&T to the FCS knockouts. and an undefeated 2017 season. He was never seriously linked to opening FBS.

FAMU’s Willie Simmons is currently the most famous HBCU coaching prospect not named Deion, but even he hit a wall. Simmons, 42, is racing for the job at Florida International after Butch Davis’ contract expired last December. Simmons set a record 45-21, won 24 of 34 games at FAMU despite administrative dysfunction, led the No 1 defense in FCS, and guided the Rattlers to a FCS’s rare playoff station. Simmons already has connections throughout the fertile recruiting regions of South Florida. It is a perfect combination. In the end, the FIU overcame FAMU’s coaching prodigy to reread Mike MacIntyre, who last went 30-44 in Colorado.

Ideally, Simmons, who is 13 years younger than Sanders, would be offered a FBS job in due time. Sanders may be the first, but he shouldn’t be the last.


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