Smallwood Coauthors Book on Aggie-Eagle Rivalry

By Aliyah Chasten / 10/17/2023 College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences, History and Political Science

Taymon Cooke earned his second career kickoff return for touchdown when he went 80 yards against NCCU on Sept. 10.

EAST GREENSBORO, N.C. (Oct. 17, 2023) – North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University’s Arwin D. Smallwood, Ph.D., has coauthored a new book about the Aggie-Eagle rivalry.

Arwin Smallwood“NC A&T vs. NCCU: More Than Just A Game” was developed by Smallwood, professor and chair of the Department of History and Political Science in A&T’s College of Arts, Humanities And Social Sciences. A renowned historian, he was recognized with the UNC Board of Governors’ Gov. James E. Holshouser Jr. Award for Excellence in Public Service in 2022.

Coauthor Charles D. Johnson, Ph.D., is an associate professor of history and Director of the Public History Program in the Department of History at North Carolina Central University.

“As an undergraduate, no game was more important than the NCA&T vs. NCCU game,” said Smallwood, an N.C. Central alumnus.

The book investigates the historically Black universities’ rivalry, which began before they played their first game in 1922.

It started with their leaders, James B. Dudley of A&T and James E. Shepard of N.C. Central, both businessmen who wanted the best for their students, campuses and communities.

“NC A&T vs. NCCU: More Than Just a Game” captures the games that have been played since 1922 as well as the unique history of the two universities, their coaches, players, students and alumni.

Smallwood and Johnson were inspired by the special relationship the universities have. The intensity of the rivalry between A&T and NCCU runs deep, with the pride of the Aggies and the love of NCCU.

NCAT vs. NCCU: More Than Just A Game book coverSmallwood’s first game experience, which took place in Durham in 1984, sparked his curiosity. He remembers how Aggies packed O’Kelly Riddick Stadium to create a sea of blue and gold and cheered the team along with the Blue and Gold Marching. When the players and band members took the field, A&T fans waved small gold towels emblazoned with the words “Aggie Pride” in blue, chanting that signature sentiment.

“Shaping me into the person I am today, attending NCCU, I have gained a great love of HBCUs and their purpose and am honored to serve N.C. A&T,” said Smallwood, who has published many other works including “Bertie County: An Eastern Carolina History,” “Annual Editions: African American History” and “The Atlas of African-American History and Politics: From the Slave Trade to Modern Times.”

Released Aug. 28 by Arcadia Publishing, “NC A&T vs. NCCU: More Than Just A Game” is available for purchase at Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Target, among other retailers.

Media Contact Information: uncomm@ncat.edu

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