Alex D. Williams

Hampton vs Howard 2021: Players to watch and predictions for breakout stars

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: SEP 11 Howard at Maryland
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The Howard University Bison (0-2) and Hampton Pirates (1-1) will face off in the first-ever Truth & Service Classic at Audi Field in Washington, D.C. on Saturday, September 18th at 12 pm ET on NBCSN. This historic meeting will mark the 96th meeting between these two teams, who make up one of the oldest HBCU rivalries.

The Pirates lead the series 53-41-1 and look to continue their four-game win streak against the Bison dating back to 2015. Howard has not won this matchup since a 30-29 win in 2014 and as the home team for the game played at Audi Field, home of the MLS team D.C. United, the Bison look to win their first game of this season.

The Bison, led by first-year head coach Larry Scott, are a very young team, and this matchup against a long-time opponent could set the pace for what this team could accomplish in the future.

So, don’t sleep on the Bison.

RELATED: Hampton vs Howard 2021 – Looking back at the legacy of a historic HBCU rivalry

Who are the players to look out for from Howard?

Quinton Williams, Junior, QB

In Howard’s first game of the 2021 season, Williams went 17 for 27 for 226 yards and a touchdown in the loss against the University of Richmond. Although he followed that up with only 67 passing yards in a loss against the University of Maryland in Week 2, Williams is proving that he can lead this team. In a strong 2019 season, Williams garnered 936 passing yards and 8 touchdowns, showing what he’s capable of when hot and proving he can make those exciting plays to get the offense going.

Jarett Hunter, Sophomore, RB

Hunter carried the ball 12 times for 93 yards against the University of Richmond in Game 1, averaging 7.8 yards per carry as the leading rusher for the team. Getting him going on offense will be key in accelerating the running game and setting the tone early on.

Rodney Dennard, Senior, DB

DB Rodney Dennard combined with DBs Kenny Gallop and Aaron Walker (All-conference team 2020 honoree) for a total of 22 tackles in the Howard vs UMD matchup. Dennard was also named to the Preseason All-MEAC Team, as he combined for 101 tackles with DB Ray Williams (Preseason All-Conference team 2020 honoree) in 2019.

*Predicted Breakout Player: Darrian Brokenburr, Junior, DL

Coming off a strong 2019 season, where he tallied 31 tackles and led the Bison with 3.5 sacks, Brokenburr was named to the Phil Steele Preseason All-Conference team (Second team) in 2020.

What about Hampton?

Coming into this matchup, Hampton has defeated Howard in the annual matchup in their last four meetings dating back to 2015 with Hampton leading the overall series 53-41-1. The Pirates currently have a record of 1-1 in the Big South Conference after winning their season opener against Virginia Union (42-28) but losing in Week 2 (47-7) to Old Dominion.

The Pirates are incredibly dynamic on offense when sharp and have the potential to continue their dominance over the Bison by starting the offensive attack early and exploiting weaknesses in the Bison defense.

Who are the players to look out for from Hampton?

Jett Duffey, Graduate Transfer, QB          

Quarterback Jett Duffey, a transfer from Texas Tech, was 24 for 35 and threw for 242 yards, 2 TDs  and  2 INT in the win against Virginia Union in the season opener. Against Old Dominion, he was 7 of 16 for 83 yards with only one touchdown. Duffey’s star power was shown in the matchup against VUU where the Pirates’ combined 611 total yards on offense (242 in the air) and brutally defeated the Panthers 42-28. Expect the high-powered Hampton, led by Duffey, to provide a major challenge for the Howard defense.

Jadakis Bonds, Junior, WR

In the most recent Pirate loss against Old Dominion, WR Jadakis Bonds was held to 5 catches, for 86 yards. However, with 7 catches for 160 yards and 3 touchdowns in just 10 games, Bonds put on a performance during his freshman year in 2018. Now in his junior season, his standout role in the Hampton offense earned him a spot on the 2021 preseason All-Big South First Team.   Bonds and Duffey connecting early in the matchup will be key in dominating early on offense.

Elijah Burris, Freshman, RB

Burris was named the Big South Co-freshman of the Week, after attaining 194 all-purpose yards and 3 touchdowns on 15 carries in the win against VUU. He also recorded a 51-yard kickoff return and had a fourth quarter 30 -yard touchdown run to seal the Pirate victory. After that win, Burris was also named Stats Perform National FCS freshman of the week.

*Predicted Breakout Player: Caleb Brown, Senior, DB

Brown was named the Big South defensive player of the week after the Pirates win against Virginia Union. He recorded 3 tackles, 2 interceptions and became the first Pirate player to have a two-interception game since 2014. In his 2019 junior season, Brown also had 43 total tackles, one interception and five pass breakups.

How to Watch Hampton vs Howard:

Hampton vs Howard airs live at 12pm ET on NBCSN on Saturday, September 18th. All coverage also streams on NBCSports.com and the NBC Sports appChris Lewis will handle play-by-play, and will be joined by analyst Jay Walker – a former Howard University quarterback – and reporter Zora Stephenson.

*Author’s Note: Alex D. Williams is two-time published author and a senior at Howard University, from New Orleans, Louisiana. She studies Broadcast Journalism with a minor in Sports Administration. You can follow her on social media at @Alexdwilliams2_. You can also follow her sports podcast: A Girl & Her Grandpa: A Sports Podcast through the generations found on Apple, Spotify, and several other platforms.

Hampton vs Howard 2021: Looking back at the legacy of a historic HBCU rivalry

Hampton vs Howard in the Truth and Service Classic
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Two Historically Black Universities. One goal. To educate, unify and accelerate the Black community. On Saturday at 12pm ET on NBCSN, they’ll meet on the gridiron for the Truth and Service Classic, both seeking bragging rights in a rivalry that goes back more than a century.

Less than 150 miles apart in the DMV, Howard University in Washington, D.C. and Hampton University in Hampton, Virginia, have been staples of academic excellence and empowerment within the HBCU community for over a century. Over those years, both institutions have worked to educate and amplify the voices of generations of leaders. While both schools have promoted academic scholarship since their founding, Howard in 1867, and Hampton in1868, both have also played an integral role in the realm of athletics. On Saturday, Howard (0-2) and Hampton (1-1) will meet for another chapter in a storied football rivalry that also provides an opportunity to spotlight the rich history between the two schools.

How to Watch Hampton vs Howard:

Hampton vs Howard airs live at 12pm ET on NBCSN on Saturday, September 18th. All coverage also streams on NBCSports.com and the NBC Sports app. Chris Lewis will handle play-by-play, and will be joined by analyst Jay Walker – a former Howard University quarterback – and reporter Zora Stephenson.

Over a century of athletic history at HBCUs

In the late 1800s and early 1900s, Black schools were fielding sports teams, but there was still widespread segregation in colleges and college athletics.  In 1912 the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA), originally the Colored Intercollegiate Athletic Association, was founded to organize regular competition between schools and provide structure for the emerging athletic powerhouses at the universities.  A group of colleges, including Howard University and Hampton University (formerly Hampton Institute), created the CIAA to further HBCU athletics. Virginia Union University, Shaw, and Lincoln were the other founding members of the CIAA.

History of the Hampton-Howard rivalry

Although Howard currently competes in the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference and Hampton in the Big South Conference, the rivalry between those HU schools persists today. Who exactly is “The Real HU” and which school earns that right to bear that title is an argument that can still be found throughout social media and popular culture, and unavoidably appears in any conversation held by alumni.

Before Hampton officially transitioned to the Big South Conference in 2018, the Pirates were also a part of the MEAC and competed against Howard annually.

The first official meeting between both teams occurred over a century ago in 1908, and this Saturday, September 18th, both programs will meet again for the 96th time, at this year’s inaugural Truth & Service Classic.

While the Hampton Pirates lead the series 53-41-1, the Howard Bison are looking to earn their first victory of the season, playing a “home game” at the brand new Audi Field in Washington D.C., home of the Major League Soccer team D.C. United. Howard won four straight matchups between 2011 and 2014, but Hampton has taken the last four straight dating back to a 37-19 win in 2015.

 Spotlight shines on football and culture

The rich legacy and history of this matchup makes the Classic even more intriguing to watch, as viewers will have the opportunity to catch a glimpse of the special HU rivalry that remains a highly anticipated matchup over 100 years after its first meeting.

This Saturday, Howard University and Hampton University will both have an opportunity to shine light on the magic of HBCU culture and athletic competition.

Heavily Guarded Nation's Capital Hosts Presidential Inauguration

This competition will forever be a touchstone in HBCU culture and athletics. You’ll hear it through the harmonious sounds of the Howard University Showtime Marching Band, which was also featured at the Presidential Inauguration parade with Howard alumna, Vice President Kamala Harris, and in the cheers from Hampton University students and alumni at pep rallies on campus and from the stadium,. The opportunities for exposure for both programs on Saturday are significant, as after a two-year wait since the last matchup in 2019, the world will have another chance to watch two great HBCUs show why their history and legacy matters.  Tune into NBCSN at 12pm ET on Saturday to see if Howard will have a chance to win their first rivalry matchup since 2014 or if Hampton will continue to dominate against the Bison.

RELATED: How to watch Hampton vs Howard – Live stream, TV info, kickoff time for the Truth and Service Classic football game

 

*Author’s Note: Alex D. Williams is two-time published author and a senior at Howard University, from New Orleans, Louisiana. She studies Broadcast Journalism with a minor in Sports Administration. You can follow her on social media at @Alexdwilliams2_. You can also follow her sports podcast: A Girl & Her Grandpa: A Sports Podcast through the generations found on Apple, Spotify, and several other platforms.