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Winter 2017-2018 Celebration Bowl FROM PAGE 1


for the Tigers to join us in this historic match-up against the North Carolina A&T Aggies and see which team will win their second Celebration Bowl in the past three years!”


For three years straight, Grambling has faced Alcorn State in the SWAC’s title game, and for the second year in a row, the Tigers won the conference title and all bragging rights. Grambling has won 11 straight after a season opening loss at FBS Tulane, rising to #12 in final FCS coaches poll in the process. Looking back further, the Tigers have won 21 straight games vs. FCS opponents, including


the 2016 Celebration


Bowl vs. North Carolina Central. North Carolina A&T comes into the game undefeated


with an


11-game win streak, which earned the Aggies a #7 ranking in the final FCS poll.


The Aggies dominated


the MEAC all season, earning 12 of 25 spots on the all-conference first teams.


Establishing itself as the


first bowl game of the season, the Celebration Bowl is a postseason football game owned and operated by ESPN Events, a division of ESPN. The game features the MEAC and SWAC champions and will be televised on ABC. ESPN Events collaborates with 100 Black Men of Atlanta to organize the game’s ancillary events which include


a youth symposium,


robotics showcase, gospel night, fan experience and more. North Carolina A&T defeated


Alcorn


State 41-34 in the inaugural game in 2015. In last year’s game, Grambling State


defeated North Hampton University FROM PAGE 4


tackles and a team-leading 14.0 tackles for lost yardage and six sacks. He tallied 10.5 TFLs during Big 12 play alone to lead the conference.


Prunty, who joined the Red


Raiders in 2010 from Hargrave Military Academy, put his mark on the TTU football program almost immediately aſter playing an integral part in signing the highest-rated recruiting class in school history in 2011. In addition to Scout.com, he was honored by Rivals.com as the Big 12 Conference’s top-rated recruiter.


His player evaluation and


relationship cultivation skills produced Texas Tech’s second-highest rated class in school history in 2012 and his


Carolina Central 10-9. The two


games have had more than 66,000 combined fans cheering their teams and conferences on.


Fans can purchase tickets to the


Celebration Bowl online at thecel- ebrationbowl.com or ticketmaster. com, or by calling Ticketmaster at 1-800-745-3000. Prices range from $50 to $175 including taxes and fees.


A full list of events


surrounding the game is available on the event’s website.


Fans interested in ticket and hospitality


the Celebration Bowl can also purchase


packages


packages for and resell


tickets through PRIMESPORT, the Official Ticket Exchange and Gameday Experience Provider of the 2017 Celebration Bowl. As the Official Ticket Exchange and Gameday


Experience Provider,


PRIMESPORT offers packages for the ultimate game day experience. For more information, please visit PRIMESPORT.com.


For MEAC fans, a special rate of $106/night is being offered at the Atlanta Marriott Marquis, and is available for December 15-16. Please visit the Celebration Bowl website for more details.


For SWAC fans, a special rate


of $97/night is being offered at the Hilton Atlanta, and is available for December 15-16. Please visit the Celebration Bowl website for more details.


Additional hotel rooms are


available at the Westin Peachtree Plaza for $99/night and the Holiday Inn Express and Suites


Atlanta


Downtown for $101/night. Please visit the Celebration Bowl website for more details.


efforts were saluted by both Scout.com and Fox Sports.


From 2002 to 2009, Prunty


served as head football coach at Hargrave Military Academy where 27 of his players went on to the National Football League - two as first-round draſt choices.


Prior to his tenure at Hargrave,


Prunty led a resurgence at Gretna (Va.) High School, redirecting a program that lost 44 consecutive games between 1991 and 1995 into an 11-1 product during his final season in 2001. Gretna went on to become a powerhouse, winning multiple state championships.


Prunty is a Chatham, Va., native


and a 1983 Hargrave Military Academy graduate. Prunity split his collegiate career between Hampton University and Alabama A&M, where he graduated in 1988.


Big South FROM PAGE 1


moving forward, and the timing is right for a new venture,” he said. “Our President, Dr. William R. Harvey, says to ‘Dream No Small Dreams,” and this is a great time to dream big."


Big South Commissioner Kyle


Kallander couldn’t be more pleased for the conference and for Hampton University.


“This is a big day for the


Big South! We have always been impressed by Hampton’s academics and


under President Harvey’s visionary leadership,”


athletics accomplishments Kallander


said. “We


appreciate his interest and support of the Big South and look forward to working with him and the rest of Hampton’s leadership to support our student-athletes.


The Big South is


a better conference with Hampton – athletically, academically, and in providing


outstanding opportunities for our student-athletes.”


Marshall said that Hampton’s association with its Mid-Eastern Athletic


Conference rivals will


continue. “We are thankful to the


Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference for 22 years of great athletic competition and tremendous support,” Marshall said. “We hope to retain long-time rivalries by playing MEAC schools. We are not leaving our fellow HBCUs (Historically


Black Colleges and


Universities). We are expanding our reach.”


Joining the Big South is not just


about athletics. Marshall echoed Dr. Harvey’s most important reason for joining the Big South.


“This move enables us to better


The HBCU Advocate 11


manage class time, reducing lost class time for our athletes, with the goal of high academic achievement at the forefront of HU Athletics,” Marshall said.


Kallander said that the vote


to admit Hampton University was unanimous, and was based on excellent academic and athletic achievement.


“The Big South’s goal is to win,” Kallander said. “We expect them to win and to compete for championships their first season in the conference. We have admitted Hampton University due their integrity and character.”


Hampton’s athletics history dates back to the mid-1970s and includes memorable NCAA moments


Tournament in 2001 when the No.


15-seeded Pirates upset No. 2-seeded Iowa State, as well as in 2014-15 making


consecutive NCAA Men’s


Basketball Tournament appearances. The women’s basketball team has won five Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference championships in a row and six in the last eight years.


On the football field, the Pirates


have made five FCS Championship postseason appearances, as well as making five trips to post-season play as a NCAA Division II member.


With the addition of Hampton, the Big South Conference will now have four members based in Virginia (Hampton, Liberty, Longwood, Radford), South Carolina (Charleston Southern, Presbyterian College, USC Upstate, Winthrop), and in North Carolina


High Point, UNC Asheville). conference


membership upcoming 2018-19 season. will formats


(Campbell, Gardner-Webb, The


exploring different scheduling models and championship


for


begin the


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