Florida Classic: Football team and bands will be vying for bragging rights

Florida Classic
KIM GIBSON/ FLORIDA COURIER
The Bethune-Cookman band, the Marching Wildcats, perform at last year’s Florida Classic.

BY FLORIDA COURIER STAFF 

It’s more than an HBCU football game. 

The Florida Blue Florida Classic is a celebration of sports, family, music and culture. 

The Florida Classic now the largest football game between two historically Black Colleges in America, surpassing the Bayou Classic between Grambling and Southern in New Orleans as the top-attended game in NCAA Division I-AA as well as the nation’s largest football game between two Historically Black College/ University (HBCU) schools.

The Bethune-Cookman University Wildcats and Florida A&M University Rattlers face off on Saturday, Nov. 23, in the Florida Blue Florida Classic at Camping World Stadium in Orlando. Kick off is at 3:30 p.m. 

Playing since 1925 

Since its inception in 1978, the game has now seen over 1.9 million spectators attend the game (1,992,648). 

The Florida rivalry dates back nearly a century and has been in Orlando for 21 years.

The first matchup between FAMU and Bethune-Cookman took place in Tallahassee in 1925. Through 73 meetings thus far, the Rattlers hold a 50-22-1 series lead, thanks in large part to FAMU’s early success — including a run of 25 wins in 26 games between 1930 and 1972, the final game in that stretch serving as the final meeting at Welch Memorial Stadium in Daytona Beach. 

Bethune-Cookman has won the Florida Classic eight consecutive years, which is their longest streak in the series. 

A highlight of the game is the halftime band battle between B-CU’s Marching Wildcats and FAMU’s Marching “100.’’ 

Fans of both HBCUs will be cheering on their football teams and the bands at Camping World Stadium. The results will mean bragging rights for the HBCU for another year until they meet again in November 2020. 

For more information about other Florida Classic events during the weekend, visit Floridaclassic.org.

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