Hampton University, the historically Black college founded in 1868 in Virginia, made history recently as the first HBCU with a NCAA Division I men’s lacrosse program.
The Hampton University Pirates played Division II Roberts Wesleyan Saturday afternoon, losing 20-3. The University also became the 70th NCAA Division I program with a men’s lacrosse team. On Saturday, ESPN broadcasted “SportsCenter on the Road” from Hampton’s Armstrong Stadium to speak with lacrosse head coach Lloyd Carter about the history-making sports moment.
Over 30 years ago, Morgan State University accomplished a similar feat, though its team competed at the Division II level. Coincidentally, one of the collegiate stars of the Morgan State team, Lloyd Carter – who played in 1981 – is now the head coach of Hampton.
The 57-year-old, a retired Baltimore fire chief and officer with the Maryland Army National Guard, previously coached Hampton’s lacrosse club.
The Pirates still have nine games left within their season. Carter is optimistic about their potential:
“We want to get to the point where we are competitive, become affiliated with a conference, win the conference championship and compete for a [national] championship. It takes time, but we’re glad to be one of the 70 elite lacrosse programs in the country,” he said.
Freshman Julian Edwards was recruited by several other colleges to play lacrosse, but he proudly chose Hampton:
“I could have gone somewhere else to play, but I keep telling the coach that I’m blessed. There is an opportunity to make history here, a chance for us to show that African-Americans can play this game.”
We wish them the best of luck this season.