Week three of the HBCU football season may have been the most exciting so far, providing some special historical moments.
The Division II ranks were the star of the show, with numerous games going down to the wire.
A SIAC team crossed off several firsts in a win while a conference counterpart is staking its claim to be the best Division II football team.
Here are the 5 Takeaways from Week 3 of the HBCU Football season.
1. Howard second half collapse
In arguably the most heated rivalry in all of HBCU lore, the Hampton Pirates came away victorious, defeating the Howard Bison 35-34.
Coming off a one-sided 65-19 win over Morehouse, Howard came into this game looking to make a statement in what was its first game against an FCS opponent.
The Bison were doing so in the beginning, leading 31-14 midway through the third quarter and 34-21 in the fourth quarter.
However, that lead would not last as the Pirates scored two fourth-quarter touchdowns to take home the win.
This was a demoralizing loss for Howard, who looked to be building momentum following impressive performances against Eastern Michigan and Morehouse, respectively.
2. Allen’s historic comeback win over Kentucky State
The Allen Yellow Jackets’ 34-30 win over the Kentucky State Thorobreds was historic in more ways than one.
The win improved the team’s record to 3-0, their best mark to begin a season the best start in school history.
Trailing 30-7 entering the fourth quarter, Allen scored 27 unanswered points, securing the largest comeback win in school history.
The Yellow Jackets are now only one of five Division II HBCU teams with unblemished records this season.
3. Down to the wire Division II games
This weekend was very entertaining, with several games going down to the wire being decided in the final seconds.
Reigning CIAA champion Fayetteville State survived a battle with the Lincoln Lions to come away with a 20-17 win. The Broncos needed 11 unanswered points in the final five minutes of the game, including a game-winning field goal as time expired to make it past the Lions.
The Tuskegee Golden Tigers were battered and bruised in their battle with the Central State Marauders but emerged victorious, winning 27-21.
Fort Valley State went to war with Edward Waters in a game that saw both teams trade touchdowns in the final two minutes. In the end, the Wildcats scored the go-ahead touchdown to secure the 34-31 win.
A blocked extra point was the difference between victory and defeat for the Miles Golden Bears, losing 21-20 to UAPB.
4. Rough Day for the MEAC
Howard was not the only MEAC team disappointed by the outcome of its week three matchup, as the conference went 0-5 across the board.
Norfolk State and North Carolina Central had their shot against FBS opponents Temple and UCLA, respectively, but were met with blowout losses.
Delaware State had a chance to make it 2-0 for the MEAC against Richmond this season but were not up for the task, losing 38-6.
After a disappointing loss to Akron last week, the Morgan State Bears could not get themselves back in the win column, losing 20-10 to Towson in the Battle for Greater Baltimore.
5. Benedict remains dominant
There is no debate that the Benedict Tigers have been the most dominant team in the young HBCU football season.
They added yet another big win to their resume, defeating the Lane Dragons 54-7, improving their record to 3-0.
In addition, the Tigers claimed their 10th straight conference win dating back to October 2021.
Although Benedict showed themselves to be human, with this being the team’s first non-shutout win, they are still outscoring their opponents 140-7 through three games.
Their defense has been exquisite, allowing just 2.2 yards per play, including 0.9 rushing yards per play.
One has to wonder if we’re witnessing a Benedict Tigers team that could make a run in the Division II playoffs and even win the championship.