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Black College Football Hall of Fame Establishes the Black College Football Player of the Year Award

At a glance: 

  • Award will be presented to the most outstanding college football player from a Historically Black College & University.
  • Award named after inaugural Black College Football Hall of Fame inductee Deacon Jones.
  • The 2016 Watch List is composed of 52 players from 26 different Historically Black Colleges & Universities.
  • The SWAC led all conferences with 16 players, followed by the MEAC (14), SIAC (11), CIAA (8) and Independent (3).

Atlanta, GA (August 31, 2016) – The Black College Football Hall of Fame (BCFHOF) announced today the establishment of the Black College Football Player of the Year Award. It will be presented annually to the most outstanding football player from a Historically Black College & University (HBCU). 

“We’re excited about the establishment of this Award, which will honor the best football player attending a Historically Black College and University,” said Super Bowl MVP quarterback Doug Williams, a BCFHOF co-founder and 2011 inductee.

The winner of the inaugural Black College Football Player of the Year Award will be announced on February 25, 2017 at the Eighth Annual Black College Football Hall of Fame Ceremony in Atlanta, Georgia, and will be honored with the Deacon Jones Trophy

“Players from Historically Black Colleges and Universities have had a tremendous impact on the game of football,” said BCFHOF co-founder and 2012 inductee James Harris. “There are very few players who represent this Award better than the legendary Deacon Jones.”

The Watch List candidates have been selected based on past performance and future potential. Additions to the list may be made as the 2016 season progresses. The finalists and the winner will be chosen by a Selection Committee.


First NameLast NameSchoolPositionClass
Malcolm Bell North Carolina Central QB Sr.
Kourtney Berry Alabama State LB Sr.
Leeward Brown Tuskegee OL Jr.
Ronald Butler Tennessee State QB Sr.
Trenton Cannon Virginia State RB Jr.
Martez Carter Grambling State RB Jr.
Tarik Cohen North Carolina A&T RB Sr.
Markus Cook Jackson State OL Jr.
Nehemiah Coward Central State DB Sr.
Detonio Dade Alcorn State OL Sr.
Jawill Davis Bethune-Cookman WR Jr.
Shawheem Dowdy Virginia Union QB Sr.
Jessamen Dunker Tennessee State OL Sr.
Leonorris Footman Alcorn State QB Jr.
Bryant Frazier Virginia State DL Sr.
Khris Gardin North Carolina A&T WR/KR Jr.
Marquis Green Mississippi Valley State DB Soph.
Trey Green Prairie View A&M QB Sr.
Amir Hall Bowie State QB So.
Greg Hankerson Norfolk State QB Sr.
Hakeem Holland Virginia Union RB Soph.
Austin Howard Southern QB Jr.
Danny Johnson Southern DB Jr.
Michael Jones Bethune-Cookman RB Sr.
Javancy Jones Jackson State DL Sr.
Mike Jones North Carolina Central DB Jr.
Carl Jones North Carolina Central OL Sr.
Javonte Kelly Lane LB Sr.
Angelo Keyes North Carolina A&T DL Sr.
DeVante Kincade Grambling QB Sr.
Kevin Lacey Tuskegee University QB Sr.
Darius Leonard South Carolina State LB Jr.
Nyme Manns Bowie State WR Sr.
Dorrel McClain North Carolina Central RB Soph.
Jonah McCutcheon Tuskegee DB Jr.
Paulin Miano Virginia Union DL Sr.
Twarn Mixson Hampton WR Sr.
Julian Morgan Tuskegee DL Sr.
Anthony Mosley Southern OL Sr.
George Myers, Jr. Benedict College RB Jr.
Jamarcus Nance Miles RB Sr.
Ebeneezer Ogundeko Tennessee State DL Jr.
Brandon Parker North Carolina A&T OL Jr.
Jac'que Polite Winston Salem State OL Sr.
Willie Quinn Southern WR Sr.
Marquis Ragland North Carolina A&T DL Sr.
Whitney Richardson Lane College DL Jr.
Clim Robbins Central State DB Sr.
Ezra Robinson Tennessee State DB Sr.
Chris Ruffin Miles OL Jr.
William Stanback Virginia Union RB Sr.
Stephen Scott Lincoln (PA) University RB Sr.
Jarvis Small Albany State RB Sr.
Patrick Smith Tennessee State WR Jr.
Guy Stallworth Grambling State DB Sr.
Victor Tabbs Elizabeth City State TE Sr.
Carlo Thomas Johnson C. Smith DB Jr.
Osband Thompson Tuskegee LB Jr.
Lenard Tillery Southern RB Sr.
David Whipple Miles QB Sr.
Chad Williams Grambling State WR Sr.
Daniel Williams Jackson State WR Sr.



The Black College Football Hall of Fame was founded in 2009 by African-American pioneers, quarterbacks James Harris and Doug Williams to preserve the history and honor the greatest football players, coaches and contributors from Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs). There have been 64 Inductees since inception, including Mel Blount, James Harris, Willie Lanier, Art Shell and Doug Williams, who serve as Trustees.



David “Deacon” Jones played defensive end for South Carolina State University and Mississippi Valley State University from 1958 to 1960. Blessed with speed, agility, and quickness, the “Deacon” became one of the finest pass rushers in the business. He won unanimous All-NFL honors six straight years from 1965 through 1970 and was selected to eight Pro Bowls. Jones is an inaugural Black College Football Hall of Fame inductee (2010) and is a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame.