Nearly two weeks after announcing it was pulling out of the Southern Heritage Classic, Jackson State has changed course and will compete against Tennessee State. In the 2022 version of the game.
But not all is well, nor settled.
Fred Jones Jr., founder of the Southern Heritage Classic, released a statement of his own on Friday following one put out by Jackson State. It reads as follows:
We are pleased that Jackson State University will be playing Tennessee State University in the 33rd Southern Heritage Classic football game in Memphis on September 10, 2022. However, we do wish to set the record straight. JSU’s press release incorrectly states that JSU never intended to cancel the 2022 game. When JSU’s General Counsel wrote his 2/1/22 letter, he did not state that JSU will play in the 2022 Classic.
He did not state that JSU would like to buy its way out of the 2023 and 2024 contract years and was putting us on notice that we need to try to find a replacement team. No. His letter was crystal clear. The letter is entitled “Notice of Termination” dated 2/1/22 and the second paragraph begins with “Therefore, this correspondence shall serve as notice of JSU’s termination of its participation in the Southern Heritage Classic and the Agreement between the parties.”
Since receiving that letter, we have had several communications and JSU is now wisely mitigating damages for its breach of contract by honoring its legal commitment to 2022, but the contract has been breached.
Jackson State’s letter claimed that “leaked” correspondence between itself and Summitt Management Corporation didn’t show that it had communicated with the company.
The SHC is set for Sept. 10, 2022 and — for now — it looks like JSU and TSU will both be there.