The ladies’s school recreation, not to mention ladies’s HBCU basketball, is a testomony to empowerment by sport. The ladies’s recreation is evolving greater than ever and it’s lovely to watch. Nonetheless, there’s no denying now we have an extended strategy to go in offering an equitable taking part in area for ladies hoopers relative to their male counterparts. The ladies’s HBCU basketball panorama is flooded with expertise that warrants the identical sort of recognition that Energy 5 hoopers get. This upcoming ladies’s season will present a number of leisure, unpredictability and moments that depart us in awe. Listed here are a number of storylines to comply with…
Final yr, there was one ladies’s HBCU program particularly that separated itself from the pack for the overwhelming majority of the season: Jackson State College. Whereas members of the media had been centered on Deion “Primetime” Sanders and the varsity’s soccer group, they had been overlooking a historic run unfolding proper earlier than their eyes. The ladies’s group entered the SWAC event on a loopy win streak and was closely favored to clinch a spot in March Insanity. They’d find yourself being upset by Southern College within the semifinals on a final second buzzer-beater. This yr, the Girl Tigers are on a revenge tour to make up for that misplaced alternative. They’re returning All-SWAC First Teamer Ti’lan Boler and SWAC Coach of the Yr Tomekia Reed, together with a bunch of women confirmed to have a constructive influence on the ground. The sky’s the restrict for the Girl Tigers–let’s see the place they land.
Norfolk State punched their ticket to the Huge Dance after a stellar season by which they gained their common season and convention event. They wish to take issues a step additional this yr. Meaning advancing in March Insanity. Repeating their success will show difficult because the Girl Spartans misplaced two All-MEAC First Group choices, together with the Defensive Participant of the Yr, Camille Downs. However this yr’s squad is star-studded, led by one NC State switch Diamond Johnson, a possible WNBA draft decide. Johnson isn’t the one high-major expertise on the roster, which consists of transfers from St. Johns, VCU and Seton Corridor. Coach Larry Vickers was named MEAC Coach of the Yr final season, and the workers he’s put collectively has been a serious components in transfers opting to play for him. The Girl Spartans have the substances to be very particular and make some actual noise in school basketball this yr.
All eyes might be on returning MEAC Participant of the Yr Future Howell out of Howard College. The 6-foot guard might be on a mission to keep up her spot as the most effective participant within the convention. She’s the one participant from final yr’s All-MEAC First Group who wasn’t a senior or graduate pupil. If she’s even a little bit higher this yr and All-Rookie choice Nile Miller continues trending upward, Howard College has an actual shot at reducing down the nets on the finish of the season.
HBCUs have an distinctive historical past of manufacturing feminine athletes who embody energy, resilience and excellence each on and off the courtroom. This season, we proceed to honor and construct upon this legacy.
Photographs through Getty Photographs.