Comedian/actor Affion Crockett graduated from Fayetteville State University and credits the HBCU experience as the reason he’s a comedian today.
“FSU was like living in School Daze movie. You have to understand, I was an Army brat, so my dad was stationed at Fort Bragg,” Crockett says. “I lived in Germany prior to coming to college. So going to a Black college, it was culture shock.” But Crockett says he quickly figured out how to fit in.
“I’m light-skinned so…when you get to see Black people up close to all shapes and sizes, to see how they was their socks and how they eat their lunch…at Black colleges you’re kind of broke so you get to see the ramen experience, the Vienna sausages…it’s prison with an education, that’s what it is.”
Crockett says that experience extended to his first CIAA basketball tournament. To those who don’t know, the CIAA is the Black college equivalent of NBA All-Star Weekend – a weekend’s worth of partying with some basketball thrown in.
“It was like the School Daze experience times ten,” says Crockett. ” As much as I love the Broncos fans, when we went to CIAA in Charlotte, we’d go to other schools like they got parking lots, really? They eat with spoons? Hold on.”
Crockett says that his career really got started during FSU’s monthly talent shows at Seabrook auditorium.
“When I go back now, the kids are on their phone and computers now so they don’t showcase their talents. I would perform , I would breakdance or I would host. That’s where I was able to hone my standup craft. It was a lot of love on FSU campus and a lot of creativity because we didn’t have any money so you had to be creative. If I didn’t go to FSU, I wouldn’t be in show business, I wouldn’t be hosting anything. I owe a lot of my character and talent to FSU,” Crockett said.
Listen to Crockett and Sherri Shepherd played slaves together in an early point in their careers that they probably both want to forget about and listen to Crockett do his trademark Jay-Z impression.