Duke. Kansas. North Carolina. Kentucky.
Those are just a few of the "blue bloods" of college basketball. When you see a top recruit, you know without a doubt that they are considering going to one of these major programs.
But what about schools like Arkansas-Pine Bluff, Hampton, Grambling State, or Florida A&M?
Those are just a few of the many Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) that could alter the college basketball landscape and how we think about recruiting.
The wheels of change are in motion, and 2023 could be the year we see this change take effect.
Mikey Williams, the No.3 recruit in the class of 2023 according to ESPN, posted on social media last week expressing his interest in attending an HBCU.
Going to an HBCU wouldn’t be too bad...👀— Mikey Williams (@619CONFIDENTIAL) June 2, 2020
What a lot of coaches don’t understand is that we don’t need them..WE CONTROL OUR OWN NARRATIVE!! I’m very thankful that God blessed me to be in the position to do that..We write our own stories..we determine what the next page in life is going to be..why does it always have to be the big universities? - Mikey Williams on his Instagram
So, could Williams really pick an HBCU over, say, Kansas?
It's something that Trail Blazers star Carmelo Anthony would love to see.
All it takes is one person to change history... It changes college sports because you have a young black kid who is at the top of his game who decided to go to a black university. - Carmelo Anthony on prospect of Mikey Williams attending an HBCU
Williams added on his IG post, "If you’re a pro, than you’re a pro, no matter what college you go to." And he could be right.
As a top prospect, the NBA already has eyes on you. Prospects used to go directly from high school to the NBA before age restrictions were implemented. If the NBA wants you, they will find you.
It doesn't matter if you go to Duke or Norfolk State. If you have the talent, it will transfer.
If Williams chooses to attend an HBCU, it could drastically alter the NCAA landscape, especially if he leaves and has success in the NBA.
If the Dukes of the world don't get a Zion Williamson every year, they not only lose that player's talent on the court, but they lose all the money that player helps generate.
Fans didn't pack Cameron Indoor Stadium last season to see Coach Krzyzewski. They packed it to see Zion.
Who knows, in 2023 fans could be flocking to Tallahassee to pack the 8,470 seats of Al Lawson Center on the campus of Florida A&M.
Williams could wield that power.
Williams has offers from big schools like USC, UCLA, and Kansas just to name a few. But after he stated his interest in HBCUs, he earned offers from Florida A&M, Tennessee State, North Carolina Central, Norfolk State, Hampton, Grambling State, and numerous other HBCUs.
Williams spoke. The HBCUs listened.
Now maybe Williams should listen to Melo. "All it takes is one person to change history."
View this post on Instagram
This has been a thought for years..this didn’t just recently pop up in my head..What a lot of coaches don’t understand is that we don’t need them..WE CONTROL OUR OWN NARRATIVE!! I’m very thankful that God blessed me to be in the position to do that..We write our own stories..we determine what the next page in life is going to be..why does it always have to be the big universities? Why does it always have to be the big names? Have you ever thought about helping your own people out?? WE ARE THE REASON THAT THESE SCHOOLS HAVE SUCH BIG NAMES AND SUCH GOOD HISTORY..But in the end what do we get out of it?? What a lot of Top level athletes don’t understand is..If you’re a pro..than you’re a pro no matter what college you go to..even if you don’t go to college..if you’re a killer..YOU ARE GOING TO KILL ANYWHERE. Not enough people speak on things like this and I’ve been meaning to do so and put some word out but I figured this would be the perfect time to do it..Im going to keep it short and simple..I just wanted to let everybody know that I AM RIDING FOR MY PEOPLE! IM 10 TOES BEHIND THE BLACK COMMUNITY!! Any way I can help or make a change in the black community best believe I am going to do that. Only God knows what the future holds..But when that time does come that I have to narrow my schools down to whatever number it is...there WILL be multiple HBCU’s on that list! And they won’t just be there for show.
Be sure to check out the latest Talkin’ Blazers Podcast with hosts NBA Champion Channing Frye and Emmy Award winner Dan Sheldon.