INDIANAPOLIS – The 30th Anniversary Circle City Classic® will feature the Grambling State University Tigers against the Alcorn State University Braves– ending much-anticipated selection of teams for the milestone event, Indiana Black Expo, Inc. announced today.
“With these two teams, you not only get outstanding football programs, enthusiastic bases of alumni but two of the most entertaining and traveled marching bands in the country,” said Tanya Bell, IBE President & CEO who announced a break with tradition in commemorating the anniversary.
“Usually held the first weekend of October, the 30-year Classic will be Saturday, October 12th – coinciding with the exact weekend of the initial game three decades ago. We are thrilled to welcome back one of the HBCUs that helped put the event on the map – Grambling – as well as one of the most distinguished programs in the country, Alcorn.”
The 30th Anniversary game is expected to draw a substantial crowd to Indianapolis, resulting in a boost to the economy. Chris Gahl of Visit Indy agrees, “We are proud to continue to serve as the host city for the Circle City Classic® a weekend-long event that drives tourism and generates economic impact. Circle City Classic® is an event that brings in tens of thousands of visitors to Indianapolis.”
Another slice of déjà vu is the fact that, just as in 1984, the Louisiana-based Grambling will meet an opponent from the neighboring “Magnolia State.” home to Alcorn State. Tickets officially go on sale on April 1. However, pre-sale orders can be made through IBE to assure premium seat options beginning today.
The Circle City Classic® XXX schools this year will insure a spirited “Battle of the Bands,” one of the highlights of HBCU classics.
The 200-member Alcorn band features the Fantastic Four drum majors, and the Golden Girls Dance Troupe. In addition to the 1977 Presidential Inaugural Parade, audiences have been thrilled by The Alcorn Sounds of Dyn-O-Mite Marching Bands in the Houston Astrodome, Soldier Field in Chicago, Texas Stadium in Dallas, the Superdome in New Orleans and the Orange Bowl in Miami. They made the Final 8 in the 2013 Honda Battle of the Bands. Dr. Renardo Murray is director.
Alcorn athletic director Dwayne White said, “This will be our first return to Circle City Classic® since 1991 and everyone is excited about the prospect. It is an honor being part of the 30th anniversary and we look forward to the weekend with anticipation.” Alcorn football is coached by Jay Hopson.
The “World Famous” Tiger Marching Band participated in the 2012 inauguration parade for President Barack Obama – the only HBCU to claim that distinction. It was their third inauguration parade performance. The band has performed in two Super Bowls and taken its act on the road internationally with stops in Japan and Africa. Dr. Larry J. Pannell is director.
Tigers’ athletic director Percy Caldwell said, “Grambling is excited about being the book-end program for the first and 30th Circle City Classic®. With this appearance, we become the only HBCU to have participated in each of the past four decades (1984, 1990 and 2000) and that’s special.” Tigers coach is Doug Williams, the first black quarterback to take an NFL team to a Super Bowl victory.
Presale tickets are available immediately for the 30th Anniversary of Circle City Classic® by calling the IBE Box Office at 317-925-2702 or by completing the presale ticket order form and faxing it to the IBE Box Office at 317-925-4734. An official press conference to include University representatives will take place in Indianapolis at a later date. For more information, go to www.circlecityclassic.com.