Photo: Florida A&M Athletics

When the NFL Combine begins in Indianapolis on Tuesday, several HBCU football players will have the opportunity to perform in front of pro scouts and team executives.

The final NFL Combine list dropped and four Black college stars will be among 324 players in attendance.

Fayetteville State defensive back Joshua Williams was most recently selected to the NFL Combine after a tremendous season and standout performance at the Senior Bowl.

In three seasons at FSU, the cornerback totaled 79 tackles and 17 passes deflected. Williams ranked third in the CIAA with three interceptions in 2021 and was named to the All-Conference Team with 27 tackles and six pass breakups.

Also read: HBCU football players were shutout during the NFL Draft in 2021. The reasons for that varied, scouts and analysts say

“This shows you younger guys, we’re watching every level,” said Reese’s Senior Bowl executive director Jim Nagy said.

MEAC Defensive Player of the Year Decobie Durant of South Carolina State will also make the trip to Lucas Oil Stadium. The senior earned All-American accolades this past season racking 38 tackles and posting his first career sack in the Cricket Celebration Bowl, earning him MVP Defensive honors.

He finished with three interceptions on the season, including a pair back against nationally-ranked Clemson. Durant also participated in the East-West Shrine Bowl.

Southern offensive lineman  Ja’Tyre Carter will also be in Indianapolis after participating in the East-West Shrine Bowl and the Senior Bowl.

Florida A&M defensive back Markquese Bell heads to the NFL Combine after leading the Rattlers with 79 total tackles, four forced fumbles, two sacks and one interception. The All-SWAC performer boasted his best game of the year against South Florida, recording a career-high 15 tackles, one sack and a forced fumble.

“He’s our top pro prospect,” FAMU head coach Willie Simmons said. “He’s arguably the top pro prospect in all of Black college football, one of the top in FCS football.”

The NFL Combine runs from March 1-7.


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