Bill Kahan Kapri, known better as Kodak Black, grew up about 10 miles south of Florida Atlantic University. On Saturday, the 26-year-old rapper was the star of the show as the Owls football program began its season with a win over Monmouth.
FAU, which rose to national relevance with two 11-win seasons under Lane Kiffin, has not been able to replicate that success without him. Willie Taggart was hired when Kiffin left for Ole Miss and the Owls had three-straight five-win seasons.
Taggart was fired at the end of 2022 and FAU turned to former Houston and Texas head coach Tom Herman. The 48-year-old offensive coach took over the team in December and spent much of the offseason rebuilding his roster through the transfer portal.
Getting to know Tom Herman 🏈🌴
I spent the day with the new @FAUFootball coach at the beach in Boca and in his office as beings the process of building a program
— Yianni Kourakis (@WPBF_Yianni) February 22, 2023
Quarterback Casey Thompson, a four-star recruit who began his career with Herman in Austin and played last season at Nebraska, landed in Boca Raton for his final season of eligibility. He went 20-of-25 for 280 yards with five touchdowns and an interception during the 22-point win on Saturday.
6:46 1st: #FAU 14 #Monmouth 0 | QB @lilthurm gets his first PASSING TD as an Owl with the PERFECTLY TIMED 9⃣ yard throw to WR @tonyjohnson_10! 🔥 COMING OUT THE GATES BLAZING! 🦉🏈 pic.twitter.com/IkX0jww6NV
— FAU Owls Nest (@FAU_Owls_Nest) September 2, 2023
Not only did Herman overhaul some of the roster, he is trying to revive the culture and bring some juice back to FAU. Kodak Black was a part of that effort during the home opener.
As the Owls got ready to take the field, Herman surprised them with the local rapper.
Kodak Black pulled up to FAU.
“I’m a fan of Kodak Black, most of the kids on our team are, I know most of the kids we’re recruiting are,” Herman said. “To have Broward County’s finest run us out the tunnel was really cool.”
Kodak Black led FAU out of the locker room before the game and struggled to keep his pants around his waist. It was still lit!
— Florida Atlantic Football (@FAUFootball) September 2, 2023
Yak also had the crowd turnt up to 11!
Broward native and rapper Kodak Black stopped by FAU’s season opener against Monmouth 🔥 pic.twitter.com/7J5fogVPHf
— FL Teams (@FLTeams) September 3, 2023
The Owls went on to win the game and brought that same energy to the postgame celebration. Kodak led the team in a rowdy rendition of ‘Skrilla’ and had the place jumping.
FAU still has a long way to go before it reaches bowl eligibility. Perhaps KB was the spark that will light a fire under the Owls all season?
Herman tried to get his team (and recruits) excited to play for him. Will it translate to the winning culture that he hopes?