I think we should encourage athletes to attend HBCUs. For one, representation matters: seeing top quality talent and coaches that look like you play heavily into getting a player to commit to the coaching philosophy. Secondly, there is the commitment to the player. I believe HBCUs have the players’ best interest at heart. Finally, there is the legacy builder opportunity at an HBCU. I believe that the athletes will have a chance to play at an HBCU and display their talents, and not be behind a deep depth chart that would regulate good talent to the sideline. I am inspired by the talent of coaches that are at HBCUs like Jackson State and Grambling State University, and I believe that you will see more HBCU talent in the NFL in the future.
I think that we should encourage our students to consider HBCUs regardless of their athletic interests. The schools can provide much more than a springboard for future athletic endeavors. But I agree that those wishing to participate in college athletics should look at HBCUs. If there is a school with a good program you are interested in joining, it should not matter what type of school it is if it can help you succeed.
If the talent is present, in general it does not matter where a kid goes to school; pro teams will find them, and they are going to succeed. But from a Black community standpoint, yes, it is still important that our educational institutions have the same opportunity and respect to choose or be chosen by top tier talent just like White D1 schools. The community should encourage athletes to at least consider HBCUs.
If the student is going to receive positive reinforcement and encouragement while at the school, and they feel comfortable, they should be choosing whatever school fits them best. The lack of representation of HBCUs in the areas where they are not prevalent, such as the West Coast, hinders kids from even knowing about them. But I think if students were made more aware of the prominence of HBCUs across the country, they would consider them more.
Our Black colleges should never be overlooked simply for the opportunity they provide for our young people. This privilege should never be taken for granted either from an academic perspective or an athletic opportunity. They can provide the same path to success as any other college or university in the country. I think it would be necessary to include HBCUs in the discussion.
Absolutely they should be considered! My young boys are biracial, half-Black and half-Korean, and my husband and I try to expose them to as many opportunities as possible. HBCUs provide a unique opportunity for them to be in a higher academic environment around students that look like them. And if they choose to pursue sports in college, I think an HBCU would be a wonderful place for them to thrive.
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