He played college football at Prairie View A&M University in Prairie View, Texas from 1951 to 1955. He was a three-year starter for legendary head football coach Billy Nicks and led the Prairie View Panthers to 33 victories in 37 games in the Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC). He was a big tall passer at 6’2" and 205 pounds. Brackins was drafted by the Green Bay Packers in the sixteenth round of the 1955 NFL Draft, making him the first HBCU alumnus to play quarterback in the NFL. He played in only one game in during the 1955 season, in the closing minutes of a game against the Cleveland Browns on October 23, 1955. Green Bay lost the game 41-10 and Brackins threw two incomplete passes. The Packers placed Brackins on waivers after that game. Brackins had tried out as a defensive back with other teams but he would never get another chance to play in the league. Brackins died from cancer in 1990.