North Carolina Central University headed to the NCAA tournament

Team celebrates trip to the big dance after winning Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference
March 17, 2014 4:21:08 AM PDT
Duke, UNC, and NC State all got an invite to the NCAA tournament, but they are not the only teams from the Triangle going to the big dance.

North Carolina Central fans are celebrating their chance to be part of March Madness. Fans gathered for a special selection show watch party at the McLendon-McDougald Gym Sunday night.

Central punched its ticket to the tournament by beating Morgan State in the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference championship Saturday.

It has been a magical season for the Eagles, and Saturday the team made history. This will be Central's first ever appearance in the tournament.

Those who watched the Eagles win understand why the chancellor got emotional while praising the team's character.

"And truth, and service! You represent North Carolina Central University in a way others can only imagine. And all I can say is thank you, thank you, thank you!" said Deborah Saunders-White, Chancellor of North Carolina Central University.

That happened in Norfolk, and back on campus, it was hard to find someone who was not excited about the news.

"They have the whole Central campus behind them and I'm pretty sure all the HBCUs will be behind them as well. So we'll do well!" said NCCU sophomore Kennedy Barkley.

Playing in the NCAA tournament is a very big deal for the historically black university. Happy Eagles fans remember not too long ago, some people questioned the wisdom of Central joining Division One.

"Shame on them! Because we have run the MEAC for the past two years since I've been here. We also beat a Division One school in NC State," Barkley said.

Now Eagles boosters eagerly await the next chapter in Central's major athletic story.

"We're gonna celebrate our team and we're gonna see 'em through, 'til they reach the championship again!" said NCCU senior Jemila Morrison. "I'm confident. I know we're gonna get it! I know how hard we've worked, and I know how hard we're gonna work."

See It On TV | Report A Typo |  Send Tip |  Get Alerts | Send us photos
Follow @abc11 on Twitter  |  Become a fan on Facebook


Load Comments