Long before Norfolk State became known for completing one of the biggest upsets in college basketball history, the Spartan Legion thrived. Once a staple of CIAA entertainment, the Spartan Legion has been wowing crowds up and down the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference since 1997. The Legion consists of 250 staff, student musicians and dancers and has performed at events both stateside and internationally. In addition to cheering on both the 2011 MEAC football champions and the 2012 MEAC Basketball Tournament Champions, the Legion has also performed for President Obama.
Watch the Norfolk State University Spartan Legion perform “Be Scared” at the 2012 Labor Day Classic vs. Virginia State.
NORFOLK, Va. – Norfolk State senior linebacker Jamal Giddens was selected as the Division I FCS Defensive Player of the Week by NCAA.com and the FCS National Linebacker of the Week by the College Football Performance Awards.
Despite playing just over two quarters before leaving the game due to dehydration, Giddens wreaked havoc for the Spartan defense. He tallied seven tackles, six of them solo, with a career-high 4.5 tackles for loss. He also registered two sacks and two forced fumbles. NSU recovered both fumbles, one in the end zone for the team’s first touchdown during the 24-0 victory over Virginia State.
Giddens’ effort helped lead a defense which recorded its first shutout since 2001, a span of 116 games. NSU limited Virginia State to 107 total yards of offense, including a scant 10 rushing yards on 36 attempts.
Giddens was also listed as an other top performer on the MEAC’s list of weekly standouts.
1. Norfolk State, South Carolina State and Bethune-Cookman are the teams to beat in the MEAC. The three teams were predicted to finish in the in the top three, and in Week One, they all looked the part. Norfolk State dominated former CIAA rival Virginia State in all phases of the game, rushing for 223 yards and the defense forced five turnovers in the route.
South Carolina State dominated FCS-opponent Georgia State, picking up a convincing 33-3 win in the Georgia Dome Thursday night. If that game was any indication, MEAC defensive backs will be in for a rough year as redshirt junior quarterback Richard Cue threw for 300 yards and two touchdowns as SC State overwhelmed Ga. State.
Sunday afternoon in MEAC/SWAC Challenge, Bethune-Cookman sent a message to a national audience on ESPN that they are in the race as well. After trailing by as many as three touchdowns, BCU rallied to win the game, scoring an incredible 38 unanswered points, defeating Alabama State 38-28 in Orlando, FL. The comeback was keyed by backup quarterback Broderick Rogers who threw for 123 yards on six completions, including two touchdowns, and ran for 100 more.
2. Winston-Salem State will get everyone’s best shot this year. Last season the Rams recorded unprecedented success in the Division II level, becoming the first HBCU to win 13 games as they finished just one game away from the championship game. Despite the loss of the team’s best offensive and defensive players, WSSU was still ranked in the top 10 of several Division II polls. Needless to say the team will have opponents seeing “red” all season as all of its’ opponents, in and out of conference will give them their best shot. Saturday’s 28-23 squeaker over UNC Pembroke was evidence of that. The next two weeks against Concord College and Morehouse will definitely be solid challenges for the Rams before they start CIAA play.
3. Morehouse is a serious contender to win the SIAC. Morehouse went up to RFK Field in Washington, DC and gave Howard all it could handle. The Maroon Tigers led late in the fourth quarter before falling victim to the comeback heroics of Howard’s third string quarterback Jamie Cunningham in Saturday’s 30-29 thriller. Morehouse will have to contend with Albany State, who represented the SIAC in last year’s playoffs in the conference’s East Division. but with eight All-SIAC preseason picks, including reigning conference offensive player of the year David Carter, the look to be well equipped for the challenge.
News links from around HBCU land.
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