On Saturday, ESPN’s College Gameday aired live from the campus of Florida A&M University.
It was the first time the program had ever broadcasted from an Historically Black College & University, and many are looking forward for more to come.
“This is the first time and I don’t think it will be the last time,” said MEAC Commissioner Dennis Thomas.
“FAMU just paved the way for the first time, and this is how it’s supposed to be. And I just want to thank FAM for that partnership with the conference.”
Thomas cited a number of reasons why Gameday came to FAMU.
“I think it was a culmination of things-Number one, I’ve been asking and requesting that they do Gameday at one of the MEAC institutes for the past three years and I guess all the stars lined up,” Thomas said. “The moon was full, and this weekend was the right time to do it. I just think that MEAC requesting it consistently for a long time and FAMU being the perfect place for it.”
With ESPN choosing FAMU as its first HBCU host school for Gameday, many people say that it brought good exposure for FAMU.
“This is a big thing,” said Chris Brown, 22, a junior business administration student from Bainbridge, Ga. “We’re the number one HBCU in the nation, and lot of people probably don’t know. This is good exposure.”
Some students feel that it will bring good exposure for athletics.
“We are number one, and it’s great to see HBCU’s with this exposure,” said Ryenaldo Russell, 23, a senior business student and safety from Washington D.C for FAMU’s football team.
“This is great exposure for our football team, our school, so people wont be so narrow-minded. It’s a privilege to be out here.”
Thomas also said it gives FAMU good exposure.
Thomas said this is a “tremendous opportunity of exposure and promotion for, not only the Mid Eastern Atlantic Conference, Florida A&M University, Dr. Ammons [and] his staff.”
Thomas said FAMU has done a phenomenal job in helping put on Gameday.
“I just have to commend Dr. Ammons and Bill Hayes the Athletic Director and Joe Taylor the head football coach,” Thomas said.
Even though some were pleased with ESPN coming to FAMU to host the show, others weren’t so satisfied with not having the featured game.
“This is a good look to be on national television,” said Jamaal Fields, 22, a senior finance student from Chicago, Ill. “I feel slighted because the game is not coming on TV.”
Not only were some students pleased with Gameday coming to FAMU, but also the panelist for Gameday were as well.
Lee Corso, college Gameday panelist said, “it was almost like for me homecoming” coming to FAMU.
Desmond Howard, college Gameday panelist said the show attracts a lot of people.
“It’s like you build it and they will come,” Howard said. “You could put this thing in the desert and they will come.”
Howard said that college Gameday coming to an HBCU brings exposure to HBCU’s.
“I think it brings a lot of attention to it first and foremost.” Howard said.
“I mean, what more could you ask for? I guess guys who are in our profession are very aware of it because of a lot of great athletes that come from these universities, but a lot of people may not be aware. So it kind of raises their awareness.”