Coastal Athletic Association

North Carolina A&T vs. NCCU ‘going to get real’ on Saturday

“It’s not any play-play, right here. This is real and its going to get real Saturday,” NCCU head coach Trei Oliver said.

North Carolina Central took care of business against one former conference rival in Week One and now has to turn around and take care of another one in NC A&T in Week Two.

The game is no longer for conference bragging rights since NC A&T is in the CAA and not the MEAC. However, Oliver knows the importance of beating the archival squad is just as meaningful as ever. 

“I know how important it is to our university and our fanbase. And it’s my responsibility to make sure that we put a good product on the field and we come home with a victory,” Oliver said. “It’s not any play-play right here, this is real, and it’s going to get real Saturday.”

Davius Richard NC A&T 2022. NCCU North Carolina Central

North Carolina A&T enters the game 0-1 after a 35-6 loss at UAB to open the season. North Carolina Central took care of former CIAA rival Winston-Salem State on Saturday with a 47-21 win to open the season. Oliver said he was pleased with the team’s effort in the first half, but the second half left a lot to be desired as the D2 squad outscored it 21-10 as he attempted to play some backups.


“We coach our ‘twos’ and ‘threes’ like we coach our ‘ones’. And we expect them to go out there and execute and play with proper technique and fundamentals,” Oliver said. “I don’t care — we talked about it at halftime — I don’t care who goes in the game, it’s a level that we want to play at. Although we didn’t well make those corrections and we’ll move on.” 

North Carolina Central defender JaJuan Hudson stands over an WSSU offensive player. (Steven J. Gaither/HBCU Gameday photo)

Despite the game’s importance, Oliver says his program will take a ‘business as usual approach’ in preparing for A&T.

“We’re going to prepare for it like it was Winston or like UCLA next week. Nothing changes with our approach to the game,” Oliver said. “We’re not going to practice any longer. We practice for two hours and we get out of there. We meet for 45 minutes and we’re out of there. We’re not going to do anything different — we don’t need to re-invent the wheel. Our guys know what they’re doing, we have a good football team.”

While the approach to the game might not change, the intensity of playing the only other FCS HBCU program in the state certainly will rachet up the intensity in East Greensboro against North Carolina A&T.

“It’s going to be a hostile environment. But Eagle Nation is going to pack it out too. It’s going to be a great crowd there. Great crowd, great atmosphere,” Oliver said. “That’s why you play at these schools. That’s why you come to a black college and play at this conference so you can be a part of this right here.” 

North Carolina A&T vs. NCCU ‘going to get real’ on Saturday
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