Six Vikings football players selected to play in inaugural bowl game in Nigeria, Africa
Six members of the Elizabeth City State University football team will travel to Nigeria,
Africa as participants in the first Eddie Robinson Motherland Classic on December
16. The athletes are seniors at ECSU and starters on the team:
Chris Carter, a running back from Winston-Salem, NC
Kevin Dodson, a punter from Camden, NC
Ronnie McClary, an offensive tackle from Goldsboro, NC
Emmanuel Plummer, a linebacker from Freeport, NY
Dwight Richardson, a defensive back from Houston, TX
Maceo Thomas, a defensive tackle from Portsmouth, VA
After a successful 2006 season where many athletes earned conference awards, the Vikings
clinched the Eastern Division of the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (CIAA).
ECSU's head football coach, Waverly Tillar, is pleased six Vikings will represent
the university at the bowl game.
"I'm really glad these guys will have this opportunity. It will be the first trip
abroad for our guys but I'm sure they will enjoy it and remember it for a long time,"
Tillar said. "These young men were chosen because they are All-CIAA performers and
good students. These are the kinds of students we have at ECSU."
These Vikings will join other American student-athletes from three other athletics
conferences to participate in a bowl that will give Nigerian residents a live view
of football. The game will be held at the National Stadium in Abuja, Nigeria. Proceeds
from the bowl game will support the Eddie Robinson Foundation and select Nigerian
The Eddie Robinson Foundation is a non-profit organization founded by the Robinson
Family in 1997 dedicated to the same principles that helped to build the Eddie Robinson
model for success. Coach Eddie Robinson, an American legend, was the head football
coach at Grambling State who made history on October 5, 1985 at Cotton Bowl Stadium
in Dallas, TX when his Tigers beat Prairie View A&M 27-7 for the 324th victory in
his collegiate coaching career. That victory vaulted him ahead of the University of
Alabama's Paul "Bear" Bryant and made him the winningest coach in college football
history. He would go on to win 84 more games before retiring in 1997 with an astounding
408 career victories. Robinson coached over 4,000 players (80% graduate rate among
them) and paved the way for over 200 of them to play professionally of which four
have been inducted in the Professional Football Hall of Fame.