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Morehouse and Howard Renew Rivalry in the 2011 Nation’s Football Classic in Washington, D.C.

By ADD SEYMOUR JR.

One of black college football’s more popular rivalries will be renewed when the Morehouse Maroon Tigers take on Howard University in the 1st Nation’s Football Classic on Sept. 10 in Washington, D.C.

Presented by the United Negro College Fund (UNCF) and the Washington Convention and Sports Authority (WCSA), the game will be played each of the next three years in RFK Stadium.

“The Morehouse community is very pleased about the renewal of the much-anticipated Nation’s Football Classic between Morehouse College and Howard University,” said President Robert M. Franklin ’75. “Alumni and students from both legendary institutions are excited.”

Beyond the game, the two schools are renewing their commitment to working together to elevate higher education in the black community.

“Both school were founded in 1867 and we share many institutional goals,” Franklin said. “For years, we’ve engaged in friendly, mutually enhancing competition, on and off the gridiron. The Classic will include a great game and an important national dialogue about the future of higher education and black male achievement.”

Morehouse hasn’t faced Howard since 1997, but the schools have played each other semi-regularly since 1955, when the Maroon Tigers defeated Howard 7-6.
Despite who won or lost, each Howard-Morehouse contest would produce sold-out crowds in Atlanta and Washington, D.C.

“The game between Morehouse College in Atlanta, my hometown, and Howard University, where I attended both college and law school, represents the best of both worlds for me,” said Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed. “There are no losers with this matchup. As someone who has experienced this rivalry first hand, I know the intense anticipation around the country begins today.”

The weekend will feature a number of events, including a Fan Festival, a step show and tailgating.

UNCF will hold an important education component, its HBCU Empower Me Tour.
“The UNCF HBCU Empower Me Tour communicates to students the importance of college and career readiness, as well as service to communities and the country, which is a long tradition and critical component of an HBCU education,” said UNCF president and CEO, Michael L. Lomax ’68.

Tickets for the game range from $25 to $60 and are available at www.ticketmaster.com. For more information about the game, go to www.nationsfootballclassic.com.

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