Inside Hotlanta and the SIAC
By Hal Lamar and Patsy Lamar
CAU In Tuskegee, Aims for 3-0 Start; Morehouse To Face Central State in Ohio
The Clark-AU Panther Cardinal and black will attempt to do this weekend what they haven’t been able to achieve since 2008. They will travel to Cleve Abbott Stadium (sometimes referred to as Death Valley) to take on the Golden Tigers of Tuskegee University. A win for CAU would propel the team to 3-0 and an opportunity to claim sole possession of first place in the eastern division of the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SIAC). Tuskegee enters the game with a 1-1 overall and a conference mark of 0-1. Despite that, the Tigers are still a force to be reckoned with and definitely not ignored. Since the 2006 win, CAU has lost to Tuskegee 11 times. CAU won only 3 games from 1964 through 2006. According the best available records, the school dominated the series 9-5 from 1945 to 1964.
One of CAU’s aces–in-the-hole is quarterback Johnathan McCrary. The son of the late Greg McCrary, a former CAU all Conference tight end, is using up the last two years of his football eligibility (he has already received his degree from Vanderbilt University), has the poise and the athleticism to go far beyond his college days. More about that in a minute.
Morehouse, meanwhile, takes their 1-1 record to Wilberforce, Ohio to take on the 0-2 Marauders of Central State. The Maroon Tigers hold a 2-0 lead over CSU in their short two game series. Last week in their season opener, Morehouse knocked down the Dragons of Lane College. Freshman quarterback Michael Smith from Detroit accounted for two scores, including a 13 yard touchdown pass and a two yard run. The Dragons were held to two scores thanks in large measure to the Morehouse defense, led by All-American linebacker David Smith who accounted for 10 total tackles, five of them solo shots. Also contributing defensively was Antonio Smith. The junior All-American from Birmingham Alabama’s total tackles included two sacks.
ELSEWHERE IN THE CONFERENCE: The Kentucky State Thororbreds, runner-up SIAC champs from last year, hardly looked the part last weekend. They were shutout on the road by McKendree University 50-0. The ‘Breds trailed 36-0 at
the half. KSU quarterback Paul Campbell passed for 174 yards but was completely shut out of the end zone and sacked five times.
Redshirt freshman quarterback Chancel Johnson led Albany State to 2-0 with a 20-7 win over Tuskegee. Johnson passed for 207 yards and three touchdowns….
Miles offense was shut out in the second half 35-0 and could account for only 7 points in the first half which led to their 45-7 loss to the University of West Georgia. These two teams have tangled since WG returned football to their campus in 1981. West Georgia leads the series with the Bears 9-0……..
Benedict battled Limestone College to a 17-17 tie but were unable to convert on their share of OT and lost to the Saints 20-17.
EXTRA POINTS: Former North Carolina A&T running back Tarik Cohen, this year’s 4th round draft pick by the Chicago Bears, struck a big blow for HBCUs last
Sunday when he rushed for 66 yards and caught a touchdown despite the 23-17 loss to the Atlanta Falcons. It’s rare for a slick-sleeve rookie to perform in such a fashion on a pro football gridiron. But anybody who watched Celebration Bowl I back in 2015 knew this “soul pro’s” gridiron days were far from over. When the final whistle blew Celebration I to a close, the Bunn, North Carolina native had rushed for 295 yards on just 22 carries and scored three long touchdowns.
John Grant, executive director of the Celebration Bowl was right. The bowl, televised Internationally, provided serious exposure to the athletes of the HBCU who more often than not , are ignored when draft day approached. Cohen’s performance will go a long way changing attitudes around the NFL by many of the “doubting Thomas” decision makers there is indeed first, second and third round talent in the ranks of “our” schools…
I personally can’t wait until draft day 2018 to see who goes in the top rounds. I’m predicting that one of those early rounders from the HBCUs will be Clark-AU quarterback Johnathan McCrary.
HAL’S SIAC PICKS THIS WEEK
Clark-AU @ Tuskegee-CAU in 3 OTs by 6
Morehouse @ Central State-Morehouse by 7
Kentucky Wesleyan @ Kentucky State-Ky Wesleyan by 10
Lane @ Benedict- Benedict by 7
Miles @ Ft.Valley- Ft Valley in 2 OTs by 6
North Greenville @ Albany State-ASU by 6
Got an item? Contact Hal -> hallamar at comcast.net