Lynwood – After two days of sprinting, weight lifting and tackling drills, three Lynwood High School students on April 30 were offered admission to Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) with Division I and II football programs during California’s first HBCU Combine.

“Our main goal is to ensure college is a set plan for all students – these recruitment events align with that goal,” Lynwood Unified Superintendent Paul Gothold said. “Congratulations to all our student athletes for their constant dedication to their higher education endeavors and staying physically active.”

Lynwood Unified teamed up with the National College Resources Foundation (NCRF) to host the two-day event, at which 250 high school and junior college student athletes showcased their gridiron grit for representatives from 23 colleges including Hampton University, Bowie State University and Virginia State University.

The event prompted more than 100 college admission offers, including the three for Lynwood athletes.

  • Lynwood High junior Tyshawn Hurst received admission and full-ride scholarship offer to Central State University.
  • Senior Jalen Powell received an admission and full-ride scholarship offer to Langston University and an admission offer from Graceland University.
  • Senior Greg Shelton received admission and full-ride scholarship offers from Virginia Union University, Langston University and Lane College.

These full-ride scholarships, covering tuition, fees and room and board, range from an estimated $20,600 to $28,756 per year.

Shelton said the football combine was a positive experience because he met with coaches from around the U.S. who used their college education to leave behind similar socioeconomically disadvantaged backgrounds.

“It felt amazing because I did not expect to get admission and full-ride scholarship offers to three colleges,” Shelton said. “It’s great to know that I can continue my education at these schools and that I can be surrounded by people who will motivate me to do my best.”

The first day’s events tested the student athletes through the bench press, vertical and broad jump, 40-yard dash time, pro shuttle and other drills. Some 125 students advanced to the second day of the event, where more drills and scrimmages were conducted until the college representatives made their recruitment decisions.

“This was an amazing opportunity and it made some of my students’ dreams come true – they’ll now get to play football for such great institutions,” Lynwood High football head coach Kendric Knox said. “The best thing is that now these kids will get a quality education when they leave Lynwood. My players and I were definitely blessed to be a part of this event.”

Since the event was a success for the student athletes, colleges and Lynwood Unified, the HBCU football combine has a strong chance of becoming an annual event.

“It is very exciting to see our students get amazing higher education opportunities like this,” Lynwood Unified Board President Alma-Delia Renteria said. “I hope more students take advantage of these opportunities as we continue to bring them to Lynwood Unified each year.”


051717_LUSD_COMBINE: Chris Moye (right), a National College Resource Foundation Movement member, congratulates Lynwood High School junior Tyshawn Hurst after he was offered a full-ride scholarship to Central State University during the Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) Combine on April 29 and 30. The two-day event had more than 250 student athletes showcasing their football skills for representatives from 23 HBCUs.