Bethune-Cookman Athletics Director Lynn Thompson missed his calling. He should be on radio. Thompson introduced the MEAC football coaches at today’s luncheon in Norfolk, Va. The conference really goes all out for its football coaches – dimmed lights, pulsating music. By the time it’s over, you are ready for some football.
New N.C. Central coach Jerry Mack was well supported with a busload of Eagle Club supporters in the house who didn’t take too kindly to the Eagles being picked to finish 8th. They booed associate commissioner Patricia Porter as she read the ranking.
Legendary football coach Willie Jeffries again was the keynote speaker and, to be honest, some members of the media groaned because they thought Jeffries was going to tell those same old tired jokes. We were all pleasantly surprised. He was in rare form. So much so that he’s going to get a separate blog tomorrow, but here’s a pre-taste: “My wife and I have been married for 52 years. How have we done it? We go to dinner twice a week; dim the lights, have some good food and music. She goes on Tuesday, and I go on Thursday.”
• Bethune-Cookman coach Brian Jenkins used his 3 minutes at the podium to plead the cause of all HBCUs. “HBCUs are in serious trouble. I challenge everyone to support our universities.” Jenkins said he’s given over $8,000 to Bethune in his four years in various capacities.
• Delaware State coach Kermit Blount recently wore red pumps for charity to protest violence against women. “If you find any pictures of me on the Internet in red pumps, it was for a good cause,” Blount said. “I have a new respect for women.”
• New Hampton coach Connell Maynor was much more subdued than his CIAA days. And he seemed to know what folks were thinking. “All y’all think I’m cocky. It’s because I know what my God can do,” said Maynor who is a professed born-again Christian. Then he issued this warning: “You picked me to finish 7th, that’s not gonna happen.”
• Leave it to the white guy to get the party started. Norfolk State coach Pete Adrian brought the house down with a revised version of The Temptations’ I Wish It Would Rain, and a breakdown dance after his speech. Priceless!
• N.C. A&T coach Rod Broadway had the most introspective speech. Broadway said his life has gone through three stages: the first was all about providing for his family; the second was to climb the career ladder; and now the third, which is to make a difference in young men’s lives. Doesn’t mean he still doesn’t want to win, though.
• Mack talked a little smack. He said NCCU is second to none and won’t back down to anyone. “I’m disappointed that we’re picked 8th. I’m not new to this, I’m true to this.”
Now, are you ready for some football!
Predicted order of finish:
2. South Carolina State
3. North Carolina A&T
5. Delaware State
6. Norfolk State
8. North Carolina Central
9. Morgan State
** Florida A&M and Savannah State are not eligible for postseason competition, therefore they are not listed on the above prediction order.