Black Colleges, White Athletes: Why?

Neither of these HBCUs has a single African American on its golf team's roster.

Posted:
 
blackcollegeswhiteathletes400
Thinkstock

The men of Texas Pan-American and the women of Bethune-Cookman each won for the second time in the past three years at last weekend's PGA Minority Collegiate Golf Championship, but neither of the HBCUs has an African American on its roster. In fact, half of Bethune-Cookman's six golfers are European, Fox Sports reports.

A piece from Fox Sports on Thursday takes an initial look at the surprising makeup of the teams:

How does Bethune-Cookman, a school that is 94.3 percent African-American and 1.5 percent white, draw such talented female golfers from Austria, Denmark and Great Britain? Coach Loritz “Scooter” Clark declined comment for this story, but the Daytona Beach (Fla.)-based school’s home course is the LPGA International Legends Course, which is located within driving distance, as it were, from the LPGA headquarters.

Renee Powell was the second black female to play on the LPGA Tour. Powell, 66, recalled twisting the arm of a sponsor in order to send golf equipment to three HBCUs. When she arrived at a tournament in which they were playing, Powell had a startling discovery.

“All of your golfers are white,” Powell told the coach.

“My school president wants to win,” the coach replied.

“If I had known that I would have given the equipment to another college where minority kids were struggling,” Powell said.

Ellison understands the objections to what transpired last weekend, but he defends the tournament.

“We’re sticking with the original mission to promote historical black colleges,” he said. “There’s no other golf tournament on this continent that represents this many minorities.”

Read more at My Fox Sports.