On Saturday, February 19th at 4:00 pm in Yulman Stadium in New Orleans, Louisiana the inaugural Historically Black College and University (HBCU) Legacy Bowl was played which showcased the best National Football League (NFL) draft eligible football players from the Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC), Mid-Eastern Atlantic Conference (MEAC), Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA) and the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SIAC). The game was televised on the NFL Network.
The two men responsible for constructing this All Star Post Season extravaganza was NFL legends Doug Williams and James “Shack” Harris, both from Grambling State University. By doing so, both men exposed many HBCU players to professional teams and scouts.
The players were divided into two teams, Team Gaither and Team Robinson, which represented a legendary HBCU coach. Coach Jake Gaither served as the head coach of Florida A&M University for 25 years compiling a 204-36-4 record while Coach Eddie Robinson spent 52 years as the head coach of Grambling State University with a record of 408-165-15. All HBCUs were represented by their coaching staff. Both teams had two head coaches. Players from the MEAC and CIAA represented Team Gaither while players from the SWAC and SIAC represented Team Robinson. Buddy Pough from South Carolina State was the Defensive Coach for Team Gaither while Damon Wilson was the Offensive Coach. For Team Robinson, Willie Simmons of Florida A&M was the Offensive Coach while Gabe Giardina from Albany State was the Defensive Coach.
Alcorn sent four players from their roster to participate in the Legacy game which consisted of Columbus Willis (Offensive Lineman), Juwan Taylor (Defensive Back), LeCharles Pringle (Wide Receiver), and Felix Harper (Quarterback). The Braves played on Team Robinson.
Team Gaither won the contest with a 22-6 victory. Florida A&M’s Defensive back Antwan Collier earned Defensive MVP honors with 9 tackles and 1.5 tackles for loss while Tennessee State Quarterback Geremy Hickbottom won Offensive MVP going 9 of 15 for 72 yards while rushing for 25 yards and scoring on a 3-yard run.