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JOURNAL ARTICLE Unsung: The Rise and Fall of Maryland State College Football - Joshua K. Wright


One hundred and forty-two wins and just 38 losses between 1946 and 1970. Seven undefeated seasons, multiple conference championships, four legendary coaches, 30 eventual professional players, five Super Bowl participants, collegiate and professional Hall of Famers, a rock star, a civil rights activist, and an aide to Bobby Kennedy. Maryland State College, now known as the University of Maryland Eastern Shore, is arguably the greatest college football program that most sports fans have never heard of! Maryland State College, located in Princess Anne, Maryland, is one of the historically Black colleges and universities (HBCU) in the United States. Except for the school's archives, there has been little published on the program's history. This article does the following: 1) analyzes the role Jim Crow played in the success and demise of Maryland State football, in particular, and HBCU football, in general, 2) highlights the program's notable players and coaches, and 3) assesses the program's impact on local race relations in an area that is best known for having the state's most horrific lynching. Maryland State's story is still relevant today because it addresses the various ways in which race has shaped the evolution of collegiate football.

Journal Information

Spectrum: A Journal on Black Men is a multidisciplinary research journal whose articles focus on issues related to aspects of Black men’s experiences, including such topics as gender, masculinities, and race/ethnicity. Spectrum examines the social, political, economic, and historical factors that influence the life chances and experiences of African-descended males using disciplinary and interdisciplinary theoretical perspectives, empirical methods, theoretical analysis, and literary criticism.

Publisher Information

Indiana University Press was founded in 1950 and is today recognized internationally as a leading academic publisher specializing in the humanities and social sciences. As an academic press, our mandate is to serve the world of scholarship and culture as a professional, not-for-profit publisher. We publish books and journals that will matter 20 or even a hundred years from now – titles that make a difference today and will live on into the future through their reverberations in the minds of teachers and writers. IU Press's major subject areas include African, African American, Asian, cultural, Jewish and Holocaust, Middle East, Russian and East European, and women's and gender studies; anthropology, film, history, bioethics, music, paleontology, philanthropy, philosophy, and religion. The Press also features an extensive regional publishing program under its Quarry Books imprint. It is one of the largest public university presses, as measured by titles and income level.

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