Non-Redskin football has a way of keeping folks away from RFK Stadium in droves, but faint heart ne'er earned a nickel and here come Tennessee State and North Carolina Central to Starplex to do benefit battle Nov. 4.
TSU and NCC have not met since 1954 when their predecessors played for what was billed as the national black collegiate championship; the Carolinians won, 19-6. There could be some excitement to the just-arranged rematch, judging from Central's last outing - a last-play 36-35 loss to Virginia Union - and a curiosity factor in State's 6-3, 250-pound, 9.8-sprinting fullback Larry Kennebrew of Rome, Ga.
Kennebrew broke in during TSU's 13-6 opening win over Middle Tennessee and had a mediocre game, but Middle Tenn was steamed. Seems Tennessee State is the only Division I (I-A, at that) member that has not signed compliance with NCAA academic requirements - so the Tigers had no qualms about using Kennebrew after Georgia signed him, then dropped him as a hot potato ineligible under the 2.0 (C average) rule.
He hadn't even graduated high school!
But TSU Athletic Director Sam Whitmon insisted, "We haven't done anything wrong. The NCAA didn't say Kennebrew was ineligible. What they said was that if we played him, we would not be able to appear on television or get a postseason bowl bid for two years."
True, said the NCAA, the applicable bylaw doesn't govern regular season - so the Tigers visit here (part of proceeds to United Negro College Fund) shapes up as their "bowl" game, who needs a postseason?