Historically Black Colleges and Universities deserve better.
They deserve people who want to be there. People who don’t believe they’re inferior. People who want to change the culture of HBCU sports.
In a sense, that is who I thought Deion Sanders was. But his recent departure from Jackson State to Colorado has left me confused.
No, I’m not hating on the man for getting his paper. His salary grew from $300,000 a year to roughly $6 million. Few people would turn that down. In his rather prescient “60 Minutes” interview, Sanders mentioned how underpaid he was (his salary was less than 5% of Alabama Coach Nick Saban’s). He also expressed wanting to look out for “his assistants” whose salaries also pale in comparison to that of Power 5 schools. He even said that he’d “be a fool not to” entertain an offer from a bigger program.
What’s most concerning, however, is him high stepping to Colorado, the perennial pushovers of the Pac-12 having not won a conference championship since 2001, after employing the whole God called me to save HBCUs rhetoric during his “60 Minutes” interview. Is it fair to expect one man to save HBCUs? Of course not, but that’s the expectation he set for himself. And after intercepting one of the top recruits in Travis Hunter, going 27-5 across three seasons and being very vocal about to the lack of resources at HBCU programs, he seemed to be on the right path. To give that up in favor of a lackluster predominately white institution considering the dreams he sold just seems disingenuous.
The thing is, Prime’s jump to a Power 5 school was always expected. It’s impossible to ignore the gap in resources between HBCUs and even Football Bowl Subdivision schools, let alone those in Power 5 conferences. The question becomes then, did he really accomplish what he said God called him to do? Sure, JSU benefited from having Coach Prime but what about the other schools? Is Clark Atlanta University better off? What about Rust College? Florida Memorial?
Look: Sanders has the opportunity to do some really great things at Colorado. The move could usher in Colorado’s era of Pac-12 prosperity with top dogs USC and UCLA on the way out. The move could be the catalyst his assistants needed to find their own head coaching gigs at bigger schools. The move could even end in Sanders becoming the first Black coach to win a national college football championship. But was now really the time? If Colorado already came calling, who’s to say that a bigger, more storied institution wouldn’t have been next?
So while I wish Sanders happy trails in Colorado, I can’t help but think there was more work to be done in Jackson. That Jackson needed him more. That the job wasn’t quite finished.l
I guess that’s why my pops always said “Don’t love anything that don’t love you back.”
INSIDE THE 305
This newsletter wouldn’t be complete without some Black excellence.
Today’s little slice of Black excellence comes courtesy of Markenzy Lapointe, who became the first Haitian American lawyer to be named the U.S. Attorney for South Florida. The position “is responsible for directing about 250 prosecutors in a district extending from Key West to Fort Pierce,” already considered one of the country’s busiest areas, according to the Miami Herald’s Jay Weaver.
“The opportunity to serve this community and country in this capacity is the greatest honor — I never dreamed of it,” Lapointe told the Miami Herald. “I’m equally moved by the support from so many in this community throughout this process.
When the Herald’s Jacqueline Charles deemed her latest offering “the most comprehensive published accounting to date of Jovenel Moïse’s murder and the mystery surrounding it,” she certainly wasn’t lying.
This story has it all: amazing graphics, brilliant storytelling, stunning visuals, etc.
Definitely a must-read.
OUTSIDE THE 305
Surprise surprise – Morehouse has saved the day again.
Incumbent Raphael Warnock bested Republican challenger Herschel Walker in the Georgia Senate race. The win delivered Democrats an outright majority 51-49.
BG is officially free.
Two-time Olympic gold medalist Brittney Griner was released Thursday in exchange for international arms dealer Viktor Bout.
CBS reported that an agreement to release Griner was negotiated last Thursday, according to U.S. Officials. President Joe Biden confirmed Griner’s release on Twitter early Thursday morning. Griner had been detained in Russia since February following the discovery of hashish oil in her luggage.
That’s how many days it has been since SZA dropped her last project, the critically acclaimed “CTRL.” Have no fear: SZA returns Friday with her highly anticipated follow up “SOS.” The album spans 23 tracks and features Don Toliver, Phoebe Bridgers, Travis Scott and the late Ol’ Dirty Bastard.
Where does “The 44 Percent” name come from? Click here to find out how Miami history influenced the newsletter’s title.