EAST GREENSBORO – The North Carolina A&T and North Carolina Central football series will continue over the next 10 seasons the two schools announced on Thursday.
Starting this fall, the agreement calls for both schools to play each year until 2030. The Aggies and the Eagles have been playing each other since 1924 with the Aggies leading the all-time series 52-34-5.
During both teams’ recent run in the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC), the game routinely had championship and postseason implications and was played in front of sellout crowds.
The Aggies announcement of their intentions to leave the MEAC for the Big South starting this fall left the rivalry’s future in doubt until Thursday.
“I know there have been some concerns about whether this great tradition of North Carolina A&T meeting North Carolina Central on the gridiron would continue with our move to a new conference this fall,” said N.C. A&T Director of Athletics Earl Hilton. “I am glad to say that tradition is going nowhere. Our fans look forward to this game each year. Aggies have a lot of friends and family who are Eagles and Eagles have a lot of friends and family who are Aggies. It is truly a family feud.”
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The home team will alternate each year, starting with the 2021 game in Greensboro.
“I want to thank our colleagues at NC A&T State University for partnering with us on this agreement,” said NCCU Director of Athletics Dr. Ingrid Wicker McCree. “This game is one of the highlights of every football season for our student-athletes, alumni and fans, so we are excited to be able to guarantee that we will meet our in-state rival on the gridiron for the next 10 years.”
Both coaches have been on both sides of the rivalry. N.C. A&T head coach Sam Washington was an assistant at N.C. Central when current N.C. Central head coach Trei Oliver was a player there in the mid-’90s.
“After nearly a year of dealing with COVID-19, I am excited to get back to some sense of normalcy,” said Oliver. “What better way to return than by announcing our new 10-year agreement with our arch in-state rival North Carolina A&T. I think it was important to alumni, students, and fans from both universities that this rivalry continued.”
Oliver served as an assistant coach at N.C. A&T starting in 2011 before eventually becoming the head man at N.C. Central in 2019.
“I think the game is important to the players because it gives them an opportunity to compete against guys they have been playing with or against since junior high school,” said Washington. “The competitive fire runs real deep when you put these two teams on the field together. It is a rivalry that is starting to grow in stature along with some of the other HBCU historic rivalries like the Florida Classic, and certainly, in the state of North Carolina, it’s a huge event in terms of bragging rights.”
Future N.C. A&T vs. NCCU Football Games
Date (Host Institution)
Sept. 25, 2021 (NC A&T)
Sept. 3, 2022 (NCCU)
Sept. 9, 2023 (NC A&T)
Sept. 21, 2024 (NCCU)
Sept. 20, 2025 (NC A&T)
Sept. 12, 2026 (NCCU)
Sept. 4, 2027 (NC A&T)
Sept. 2, 2028 (NCCU)
Sept. 1, 2029 (NC A&T)
Aug. 31, 2030 (NCCU)
Courtesy: N.C. A&T Athletics