Fans Can Vote Online; Recipients to be honored at MEAC/SWAC Challenge on Sept. 4

The MEAC/SWAC Challenge presented by Disney – featuring Bethune-Cookman of the MEAC against Prairie View A&M of the SWAC – announced the six nominees for the fourth annual Walter Payton Achievement Award. The award is an honor annually given to a player from each school participating in MEAC/SWAC Challenge – set to be played Sunday, Sept. 4, at Florida Citrus Bowl Stadium in Orlando, Fla. The seventh annual event, which features teams from two prominent Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) conferences, will be aired on ESPN HD at noon.

Three finalists from each school were selected by a committee of academic advisors and coaches. Bethune-Cookman nominees include: Natiel Curry (Sr., C); Nesly Marcellon (So., DB); and Jean Fanor (Sr., DB), while the Prairie View A&M nominees include: Raheem Cardwell (So., LB), James Dekle (Sr., OL); and Marcus White (So., LB). A bio on each nominee can be found on

Fans will determine the winners via online voting at from July 27-Sept. 2. The winners will be announced and honored at the MEAC/SWAC Challenge Kickoff Banquet on Friday, Sept. 2, at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

Each year, the game pits a MEAC team against a SWAC opponent at a neutral site located within the footprint of one of the conferences. Several additional events will take place around the game, including a high school career panel and the halftime Battle of the Bands.

Tickets for the 2011 MEAC/SWAC Challenge Presented by Disney are on sale now at all Ticketmaster outlets.  Tickets are $30 for reserved seating and $20 for general admission, plus applicable taxes and fees. Travel options including discounted hotel accommodations, game tickets and specially-priced Theme Park Tickets are available through Anthony Travel, the official travel provider of the MEAC/SWAC Challenge.

The MEAC/SWAC Challenge is owned and operated by ESPN Regional Television (ERT), a subsidiary of ESPN. For more information about the MEAC/SWAC Challenge, or to join the event’s following on Facebook and Twitter, please visit the event’s official Web site at or at


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