Florida Beach Bowl, only Black-owned game, to feature 2 HBCUs

Game CEO Victor Robenson breaks it down

The college football championship bowl season will now feature a Black-owned match-up. Bowls are postseason games in college football, traditionally awarded to teams who have won at least six games in the regular season. Before this year, there was only one bowl game for HBCUs, the Cricket Celebration Bowl, which features the SWAC and MEAC regular-season champions.

Recently, Victor Robenson, the CEO of the newly established Florida Beach Bowl, spoke to rolling out about what to expect.

What is going on with the Florida Beach Bowl?

We decided to do something special for HBCUs, especially Division II. I felt like they weren’t really getting love from bowl games. You have the SWAC-MEAC who have a bowl game. I felt like we needed to give something back to the oldest HBCU conference ever, which is the CIAA. Naturally, they play against the SIAC. They get together on Dec. 13 down in beautiful, sunny South Florida for six beautiful days to create an experience with an event that’s going to happen and give them the ball game experience I think they really deserve. I think they do play a good brand of football, and it deserves to be marketed as well as any other conference.

What do you think about the general coverage of HBCU football right now?

I feel like anything that brings a positive view of viewership to those conferences is something that’s needed, but I just think a lot of our companies should actually somewhat combine and create a bigger platform as well. From my upbringing, it’s always like, if somebody has two pieces of bread and I have two pieces of bread we come together we have two sandwiches … I believe in collectiveness and bringing stuff together. But I’m not against everybody starting the platform, as long as you get the message of the HBCUs shown in a good light and the coverage is good.

I’m all for it, man.

I’m willing to work with any and everybody as long as they have opposite perspectives of what the end goal is.

Deion Sanders once suggested that all the HBCUs combine in one big conference. How do you feel about that idea?

I think individual conferences are needed, but only if you get the proper team[s] in these conferences. I don’t like the bottom tier of the conference when they only win two games, one game, or they are just barely competing, but I do understand where Deion is coming from.

When you have a collective stronger group, you can actually negotiate better in TV rights deals in other media outlets or sponsorships. You have a stronger product if you have a better team in a conference, but I don’t think it’s for me to come out and say, “Hey, I want one collective big conference.”

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