July 26, 2011

NBC Sports Group Extends its Partnership with the State Farm Bayou Classic

NBC Sports’ Coverage of Grambling-Southern Rivalry Began in 1991 and Now Continues Through 2012 Contest

NEW YORK – The NBC Sports Group will continue to broadcast the State Farm Bayou Classic, a Thanksgiving weekend tradition, through the 2012 contest, it was announced today by the NBC Sports Group, Southern University System and Grambling State University. As part of the agreement, State Farm has extended its title sponsorship of the event.

NBC Sports has been the home of the Bayou Classic, a classic matchup of the Southern University Jaguars and the Grambling State University Tigers that takes place annually on Thanksgiving weekend, since 1991.

“The Bayou Classic is a slice of Americana, and at the end of this agreement we will have broadcast this iconic event for 23 straight years,” said Jon Miller, President, Programming, NBC Sports and VERSUS. “We look forward to continuing to broadcast this Thanksgiving weekend tradition to college football fans across the country.”

“Southern University, the nation’s only HBCU System, is pleased to continue our partnership with State Farm and NBC for the State Farm Bayou Classic,” said Ronald Mason, Jr., President, Southern University System. “The NBC Sports broadcast and the title sponsorship helps us spread our Jaguar pride into millions of households nationwide. Bayou Classic is more than a football game, it’s a tradition of family fun and camaraderie that we look forward to every Thanksgiving weekend.”

“The State Farm Bayou Classic is much more than a wonderful football game between two of America’s distinguished universities; it is the largest athletic signature event for HBCU’s in the world,” said Dr. Frank G. Pogue, President, Grambling State University. “Its success has been a commitment to bringing people together.”

“We are proud to continue to be title sponsor of an event as rich in history as the Bayou Classic. State Farm® has always had a strong commitment to higher education and the communities in which we live and work. The State Farm Bayou Classic is another way to demonstrate that commitment,” said Pam El, Marketing Vice President for State Farm. “Working with NBC has given the Classic and State Farm the ability to share this event with people across the country and become a part of Thanksgiving weekend traditions. We are thrilled for the opportunity to continue working with NBC.”

One of the highlights of the NBC Sports broadcasts is the renowned “Battle of the Bands” halftime show, during which the marching bands of both Southern University and Grambling State University put on an exciting display of talent.

The first ever Bayou Classic, won 21-0 by Grambling, was played in New Orleans’ Tulane Stadium in 1974.

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Media Contact:
Debra Johnson


July 25, 2011

My Bayou Classic Road Show

Road Show visits 6 Louisiana cities in 3 days
Beginning on July 27 and continuing until November, the My Bayou Classic Road Show brings the excitement of the State Farm Bayou Classic® to Grambling and Southern alumni, students and fans in the Gulf South.

The My Bayou Classic Road Show kicks off next week with a three-day tour across Louisiana. The first stop is noon on Wednesday, July 27 in Monroe, La., at the RW Sports Bar and Grill. “Next week we will be in six cities in three days. This is a great opportunity to meet Southern University’s head football coach Stump Mitchell, Grambling State University’s interim athletic director, Aaron James, Southern and Grambling alumni, State Farm agents, and all who love the Bayou Classic,” said Chuck Morse, marketing director of the State Farm Bayou Classic®. “There will be prizes, food and a lot of football talk.”

Once football season begins, the Road Show will travel to 10 football games – including Grambling and Southern homecoming games, the Port City Classic (Shreveport), Atlanta Football Classic, and State Fair Classic (Dallas).

Keep an eye out for the My Bayou Classic Road Show RV where fans can win prizes, meet Grambling and Southern alumni and former Bayou Classic participants, and share their favorite Bayou Classic experiences.

The State Farm Bayou Classic® (November 26, 2011) features one of America’s greatest college sports rivalries, bringing the fans and alumni of Southern University and Grambling State University to New Orleans for a celebration of football, family and the traditions and pageantry surrounding Historically Black Colleges and Universities.

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Media Contact:
Monica Pierre, 504-231-9837
Debra Johnson (GSU)


July 19, 2011

Gala to Celebrate 110th Anniversary and Regional Leaders

GRAMBLING, La. — This Labor Day weekend is sure to be one to remember. Gramblinites and friends of Grambling State University (GSU) will converge in the twin cities of Shreveport-Bossier City for the Second Annual Port City Classic. Kicking off the weekend in style will be GSU’s Port City Gala taking place in the Captain Ballroom of the Shreveport Convention Center on Friday, September 2 at 7:00 p.m. Many of Shreveport-Bossier City’s finest citizens, including business and community leaders, will be in attendance.
The event will be a forum for not only celebrating GSU’s 110 years of tradition, service and excellence, but also recognizing the contributions of a select few outstanding citizens of the region and alumni of the University. The Beacon Award, the University’s highest non-academic honor, will be presented to individuals who have made a significant difference to the lives of others in communities across the nation in seven categories: Arts & Culture, Athletics, Business and Industry, Community Development/Civil Rights, Community Service, Education, and Public Service.

A celebration will not be a gala affair without entertainment. Entertainment for the evening will be headlined by R&B sensation, Mary Griffin who is known for her sultry performances, and Country & Western singer Miko Marks. Both performers are alumnae of Grambling State University who have won international acclaim in their respective musical genre. “We are expecting a spectacular evening of glamour, humor, fun and of course, scholarship dollars to entice more regional students to attend Grambling State University” says Mrs. Helen Godfrey Smith, President of Shreveport Federal Credit Union, who also serves as the Port City Gala Committee Chair and Chair of the Grambling University Foundation.

The Gala will surely be the biggest event to hit the twin cities in a long time. According to Dr. Kenoye Eke, Sr., Interim Vice President of Institutional Advancement, “the Gala and the entire Port City Classic Weekend will serve as a much-needed boost to the local economy, adding to the $285 million economic impact that Grambling State University has on Louisiana’s economy annually.”

Grambling State University emerged from the desire of African-American farmers in rural north Louisiana who wanted to educate Black children in the northern and western parts of the state. The University has grown from its humble beginnings to a comprehensive university serving 5,000 students from across the nation and 38 foreign countries, offering a broad spectrum of degree programs from the baccalaureate to the doctorate degrees.

Tickets for the Gala are available at GSU’s Office of Institutional Advancement. The VIP tickets cost $110 per person, a portion of which will count as a donation to Grambling State University. The Advancement Office is open for ticket sales from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday thru Thursday, and 8:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. on Fridays. For telephone inquiries call 318-274-2217.

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Media Contact:
Debra Johnson


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