How can we get more of that?
It’s easy to make the argument that sports culture, in its most vibrant and exciting forms lives on college campuses. And if you want to see when its most lit, watch the reaction of stadiums and gyms when one of our athletes makes a SportsCenter Top 10-worthy play.
Those kind of plays aren’t new to HBCUs. Steve McNair kind of set it off.
The Morgan State’s Edwin Baptiste carried into the new millennium.
But in recent years and with increasing attention on HBCU Facebook and Twitter, our schools are beginning to find a more regular place in content created by the World Wide Leader in Sports. North Carolina A&T’s Tarik Cohen set it off.
And now that basketball season is in session, you get more from the hardwood; like Texas Southern turning Houston into Lob City 2.0.
And then from the Celebration Bowl.
So how HBCU can get more of these plays in front of a national audience, and more importantly, in front of potential recruits?
Allocate the resources for athletics to livestream games. — The best way to be seen is to be seen. And if the school isn’t spending the money on livestreaming or gameday production, it should be a consideration. Claflin, North Carolina Central, Bethune-Cookman are a few of the schools doing work on the institutional level, while the SIAC and the SWAC are great at helping gameday content go viral.
Put financial support behind students, alumni who are creating digital content. — You would not believe the number of HBCU alumni who work in television and digital production, who would love to sneak a few HBCU highlights into broadcast packages — if they ever made it across their timelines. HBCUs have to do a more effective job of advertising with companies like HBCU Sports, HBCU Gameday and On the Yard with Southern University to help in creating more viral content and features of our athletes and coaches.
Share the content. — It doesn’t go viral unless you send it out. Send it out. And remember it doesn’t have to be just athletic videos. You can also make the top ten or trending topics lists for videos like Howard students in the Burr.
Or this old school gem from Aggieland.
HBCUs can make the big stage, if we’re willing to support the content being made and shared throughout the vast HBCU social networks and beyond.