Jelani Williams and the Howard Bison are going dancing this March. They punched their ticket to the Big Dance thanks to their win in the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference tournament, beating the Northfolk State Spartans in the finals last Saturday by the slimmest of margins, 65-64.
It’s a moment to remember for Williams and the rest of Howard because that conference championship also cemented further the Bison’s dominance in the MEEAC this season — and also paved the way for the school to make its first NCAA tournament appearance since 1992.
“The champs is here,” Williams shouted after the Bison captured the conference’s tournament crown, per Steven J. Gaither of HBCU GameDay.
Williams was easily the MVP of the game against Northfolk State, as he finished with 20 points with six rebounds and two assists in 28 minutes of action on the floor.
Williams, who went to Penn Quakers before transferring to Howard, also expressed how grateful he is of having the opportunity to play basketball with the Bison.
“When Coach (Kenneth) Blakeney recruited me at the end of last season, I was coming off a loss in the semifinals of the Ivy League Tournament. I was down on myself,” Jelani Williams shared. “I didn’t feel like I performed to my ability. It was my first season back in five years. I’d missed almost 1,800 days of basketball.”
Up next for Howard is a tough assignment, as the Bison look to score a massive upset win versus the No. 1 seed — and defending NCAA tournament champion — Kansas Jayhawks in the first round this Thursday.