Arlington, Texas— Winston-Salem State held on to the USN Black College Poll Top Spot for the third week. The CIAA Champion WSSU Rams, will host a second round playoff game on Saturday, November 26th in Bowman Gray Stadium. WSSU is the #1 seed from Super Region 1, and will face the /#5 California (PA). This is the first undefeated regular season for Winston-Salem State, since the 1978 season led by head coach William “Bill” Hayes, current Director of Athletics, and the first time in 20 years the Rams have hosted a NCAA DII Playoff game.
The CIAA has an all-time record of 2-28 in the playoffs. The only two CIAA teams to win playoff games are WSSU, which defeated Cal Poly 17-0 in 1978 in front of nearly 18,000 fans at Bowman Gray, and Hampton, which defeated Albany State 33-7 in 1993. The Rams are 1-4 all-time in the playoffs and in their last appearance lost to Jacksonville State 49-24 in a first-round game at Bowman Gray in 1991.
Coach Connell Maynor is unfazed by his conference’s record.
“I think our guys are ready, and this is what we set out to do,” he said. “We got our first goal out of the way, and that was to win the CIAA championship. The guys really believe that we can win four more football games.”
Winston-Salem State (11-0), Norfolk State (9-2), Jackson State (9-2), Bethune-Cookman (8-3), and Alabama A&M (8-3) held the top five spots in the USN Poll for Week 12. Alabama State (7-3), Morehouse (8-2), Grambling (6-4), FAMU (7-4), and South Carolina State (7-4) are the next five ranked teams. Albany State (8-4) dropped out of the rankings with its 63-14 loss to North Greenville in the Division II playoffs .
Jackson State, Alabama A&M and Alabama State finish tied for the SWAC West crown with 7-2 records. Alabama A&M will represent the West in the SWAC Title Game. Grambling must beat Southern in the Bayou Classic to advance to the title game. If Grambling loses, the University of Arkansas-Pine Bluff will advance.
MEAC Conference Champion Norfolk State heads to the FCS Playoffs when it meets neighbor Old Dominion.
“I’d like to extend congratulations to all the conference champions on their successful seasons,” said John Posey, CEO of Urban Sports News. “There have by many surprises this season. The gap between the traditional powers and other schools has closed. I will say I have never seen a season with such poor special team’s play and poor quarterbacking. It has hurt the HBCU football brand in my opinion. I see North Carolina A&T, Howard, Alabama State and Prairie View as teams on the rise in 2012. I would like to extend our thanks to the SWAC for using Urban Sports News to provide still photography for the 2011 SWAC Volleyball Tournament.”
||Winston-Salem State Rams
||Norfolk State Spartans
||Jackson State Tigers
||Alabama A&M Bulldogs
||Alabama State Hornets
||Morehouse Maroon Tigers
||South Carolina State Bulldogs
Dropped Out of Top 10: Albany State. Moving Up: Bethune-Cookman, Grambling, South Carolina State. Trending Down: Albany State, Elizabeth City, Hampton, North Carolina A&T.
Others Receiving Consideration: Albany State, Elizabeth City, Hampton, Howard, Langston, Miles, South Carolina State, and Stillman.