© January 28, 2006
|Tennessee State became the first all-black basketball team to win a national championship when it defeated Southeastern Oklahoma 92-73 for the NAIA title in 1957. “I’ve always felt that we’ve been overlooked,” said team member Nurlin Tarrant.(Tennessee State University PHOTO)
By Ed Miller
On March 16, 1957, a Saturday night, the Associated Press moved a story from the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics basketball tournament in Kansas City, Mo. It reported that Tennessee State defeated Southeastern Oklahoma 92-73 to win the NAIA title.
It would have been just another small-college championship game, except for what was mentioned in the third paragraph:
“Tennessee State thus became the first all-Negro team to win a major basketball tournament in history.”