Norfolk State and North Carolina A&T aren’t necessarily big football rivals, but they do have a history of competing against each other. The two programs have decided that there is still a future with each other despite A&T leaving the MEAC.
The schools signed on to play a four-game series announced jointly by the two athletic departments on Tuesday. The non-conference series between the two former CIAA and MEAC rivals consists of a pair of home-and-home agreements. The dates are:
- Nov. 5, 2022 at Truist Stadium, Greensboro, North Carolina
- Sept. 30, 2023 at Dick Price Stadium, Norfolk, Virginia
- Sept. 19, 2026 at Truist Stadium, Greensboro, North Carolina
- Sept. 18, 2027 at Dick Price Stadium, Norfolk, Virginia
“We look forward to playing North Carolina A&T and continuing this great HBCU rivalry,” first-year NSU head coach Dawson Odums said. “They have an outstanding program and had tremendous success in the MEAC. Under coach Sam Washington’s leadership, I know they will continue to be successful in the Big South. Our institution, alumni and the NSU community are looking forward to reuniting with the Aggies.”
Norfolk State and A&T have competed on-and-off since both were members of the CIAA. They have met 43 times, dating back to 1962. A&T left the CIAA to form the MEAC after the 1970 season, and the two became conference rivals again when NSU joined the MEAC in the 1990s.
“Norfolk State and North Carolina A&T are two of the finest institutions in America. Being proud historically Black universities, traditional rivals, and with coach Odums now serving as their head coach adds to the excitement of entering into a football series with the Green & Gold,” Washington said in A&T’s statement.
The announcement comes weeks after Odums was hired as NSU head coach. Washington actually coached Odums during his stint as defensive coordinator with North Carolina Central when Odums was a linebacker.
“I have known Coach Odums since he was a college football player, and I have seen him become one of the best coaches on the FCS level. It will be a challenge facing his program each year, but we are looking forward to it.”
The teams’ last meeting as MEAC foes took place in 2019, a 58-19 Aggie win at Dick Price Stadium. The teams did not meet during the 2020-21 season, North Carolina A&T’s final year in the MEAC, as both teams opted out of the season due to concerns surrounding the pandemic. The Aggies will be Big South Conference members as of July 1, 2021.