Change Up: Will FAMU’s Absence Hurt The Atlanta Classic?

NC A&T’s Blue and Gold Marching Machine will perform at the Georgia Dome during The Atlanta Classic. (NC A&T photo)

HBCU Digest reported on Tuesday that North Carolina A&T and South Carolina State will compete in the 2012 Atlanta Classic football game on Oct. 5. That announcement made waves, as it meant Florida A&M would not be participating in the event for the first time since 1997. So far, the reaction to the announcement has been mixed on social media. Many are speculating that attendance will suffer without FAMU’s presence.

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Keep in mind that attendance at the classic dropped dramatically last year, from over 60,000 in 2011 to just over 41,000 in 2012. Much off that dropoff was attributed to the absence of The Marching 100, FAMU’s world famous marching band. An announcement on the band’s future is expected sometime this month.

Personally, I think the classic shakeup is good. Last year’s game showed that whether or not the Marching 100 performs has a sizable impact on how many people will attend the game. A&T alumni are everywhere, and I’m sure Atlanta has a high concentration of them. South Carolina is only a stone’s throw away, and everyone loves Atlanta.

//platform.twitter.com/widgets.jsWhat do you think? Was leaving FAMU out of the classic a mistake? Will attendence drop further with new schools in the mix? Tweet us, comment and vote in our online poll.

-Steven J. Gaither
HBCU Gameday

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