Ernest H. Pitt
EDfTOR STAFF WRITERS
.> Craig T. Greenlee Rolando Simmons
Yvonne H.B. Truhon J.D. Scbwalm
Brands Thomas c Joe Daniels
Courtney Mack * Mark Lyons \
Another one bites
the dust -- once more
For the lime being, another black college all-star foot
ball game has bit the dust - again.
This time, it's the Freedom Bowl All-Star Classic that
has been laid to resL ltseems that corporate sponsors decid
ed to withdraw their dollars because of low fan auendance
and lack of financial support from the black colleges
involved. Organizers of the five-year old contest are hoping
that they can stage the game in '89. They'll need that time to
come up with a workable plan that will satisfy sponsors and
guarantee their continued participation.
The game has been a Godsend to black college seniors, .
providing them with an additional opportunity to "Show their
~ wares to NFL scouts. 1 ? *?
Let's face it, there aren't very many black college foot
pall pltiy wlin get in pl.iy in tlm Senior Bovi in Mobile,
_ Ala., the Eas^West Shrine game in San Francisco, or the7"
Blue-Grey game in Montgomery, Ala. Getting that exTfa
opportunity has made the" difference in some black college
players being drafted or not being drafted.
The Freedpm Bowl has given fans a preview look at
some pros to be. Barney Bussey showcased his skills as a
defensive back in the '84 contest. Bussey played at South
Carolina State and is now a major contributor as a DB (aick
le back) for the Cincinnati Bengals. Jerry Rice, the game
breaking receiver for the 49ers, played in the '85 game repre
senting Mississippi Valley State. So did comerback Issiac
Holt, now a member of the Minnesota Vikings secondary.
* Holt played his college ball at Alcorn State. Delaware State
alum John Taylor, a return specialist/wide-out, is Rice's
teammate. He played in the '86 game.
Granted, some may debate that these guys were the
creme de la creme of college football players while they
were in school. All of the NFL teams knew everything they
needed to know about them, they will argue. They didn't
need an extra look. They would've made it anyway, the rea
However, there are some exceptions. The most notable
. example of how this game can help a player's stock in the
draft occurred in '87. /
Terry Williams played comerback for Bethune-Cook
man that year. He had a solid year, but didn't even make the
all-MEAC team. But he got the opportunity to play in the
Freedom Bowl. By the spring of '88, Williams had left some
very positive impressions in the minds of NFL player per
sonnel directors and scouts. He was chosen in the second
round by the New York Jets and was the first black college
Please See Page 14
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should ba addrasaad to Emaat H. Pitt Edtor and Pubtehar, Black CoAaga Sports Raviaw. P.O.
Box 3154. Wntton-Safcrrv NX. 27102.
PWOTO CREDITS: Covar photo (Black cdtega baskatbal) by Joa OanMt; Fraadom Bo?rf phdo
by BCSR staff; Laate Tlman photo by J.D. Schwalm. ? ^
BCSR it ? aupptamart to fcaaa naaapapars: Aiarta \fcfca. Tha Matin. Bartmora Afro-Amari
can, Baton Rouga Cormwnlty laadar. Birmingham Tlmaa, Carolna Paaearwfcar. Carolna
Tltma. Chariaaton Chronlda. Iradal County Nawt. Tha Maaaangar^Mato tawtyCoutlar.
Motito Da arm. NorfoRi Journal and Quida, Ptiadalphia Trfcuna, PWtsbuph Coular, Hehmond
Afro-Amarican, WbaNngton Ah>-Amarican and Wnaton^Salam Cfronlda.
BCSR Player of the Year
^ File Photo
Lewis Tillman's consistency as Jackson State's main man made It difficult to overlook hts
achievements this past football season.
This LOu's for you
Lewis Tillman, the workhorse running back for Jacfcson
State has been selected as Black College Sports Review's Play
er of the Year for 1988.
The 6-1, 202 lbs. senior from Hazelhurst, Miss, had a very
consistent year, rushing for 100 or more yards in eight of the
Tigers 1 1 games. For his career, he ran for 100 or more yards in
19 games. Tillman ended the season with 1,436 yards and 13
TDs as the Tigers won their fourth straight SWAC champi
onship and finished at 8-1-2.
Tillman will best be remembered for breaking Walter Pay
ton's single season and career rushing records at Jackson State.
He set the new career standard in JSU's seventh game vs.
Grambling, which gave him a career total (at that point) of
3,597 yards. Payton, who played for the Tigers from 71-74,
held the previous record of 3,563 yards. The year before, Till
man rushed for 1,474 yards to shatter Payton's single season
mark by more than 300 yards. He ended his college career with
4,167 total yards and 33 touchdowns. In 43 games, he averaged
19 carries a contest '
His best individual performance of '88 came against
Grambling in a game that helped JSU secure another SWAC
football crown. In the 24-17 victory, he scored the winning TD
and ran for 224 yards, which was also a single game career
Tillman has proven himself to be a valuable commodity in
the eyes of NFL folks. He is viewed as one of the top three run
ning backs coming out of the college ranks this past season. He
has a solid shot at being a top draft pick this coming spring.
Not necessarily as fluid a runner as Payton, Tillman's main
assets are his ability to read his blockers and make his cuts at
the right times. He finished No. 2 among 1-AAfushers, averag
ing 130.5 yards per contest.
Last month, Tillman gave the pro scouts an eyeful during
the Blue-Grey All-Star game. He was the Grey team's MVP,
rushing for 86 yards, catching five passes for another 25 yards
and scoring two touchdowns.
At the start of this season, Jackson State put in a new wrin
kle in its sports promotions by touting Tillman for the Heisman
Trophy. In the Payton Award voting, which goes to the top
player in Division I-AA, Tillman received 10 votes. In '87, he
was a finalist for the award as l-AA's No. 3 ranked rusher.