I cringed as the scores came in over the weekend: Ohio State 76, Florida A&M 0; Florida State 54, Bethune-Cookman 6; Miami 77, Savannah State 7. Our Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) have traded their proud, rich football heritage for money. And I don't think it's worth it.
There's only one reason our HBCUs schedule games against schools whose head coaches make more than their entire athletic budgets: they earn a big payday, even if that means being publicly humiliated along the way.
The irony is that the SEC wouldn't continue to have a lock on national football championships were it not for their black players. And it wasn't all that long ago that blacks were as unwelcomed in the SEC as they were at KKK rallies. But when Sam Cunningham ran for 135 yards and two touchdowns on 12 carries in 1970 as the University of Southern California routed Alabama 42-21 in Birmingham, the conference got the message that they couldn't win without black talent.