For the first in its seven-year history, the Celebration Bowl is a sellout.
In what’s known as the Black College National Championship, the champions of the SWAC and MEAC conferences will square off in Atlanta. The game has been played in the ATL since its inception in 2015.
The crowd attendance for that inaugural game was announced at 35,000. In the years since, the crowd attendance has failed to reach that mark. It just wasn’t the same attraction.
But that has changed this year with the Jackson State Tigers set to take on the South Carolina State Bulldogs.
The expected attendance at Mercedes-Benz Stadium is to be over 71,000 fans. With Tigers HC Deion Sanders being a former Atlanta Falcons player and sports icon and the excitement, interest and intrigue he’s created in the HBCU football community, one has to believe that played a role in the sellout.
Jackson State wins @theswac 🏆 and is heading to their first ever @CelebrationBowl
Here's what Coach @deionsanders had to say about the win. pic.twitter.com/CwGueKF7IM
— Andscape (@andscape) December 5, 2021
Executive Director John Grant made the announcement on Monday
“We are proud to announce that the 2021 Cricket Celebration Bowl in Atlanta has officially sold out,” said Grant. As a result of the high demand for tickets, organizers will make available 1,000 standing-room-only tickets at non on Wednesday Dec. 15 at noon; tickets will be $40 each. “Once those tickets are sold, no other tickets will be available,” Grant added.
Sanders Said The Tigers Would Play For Championships: SWAC Is Won But They’re Not Done
When taking the reigns of the program in September 2020, Coach Prime said the expectation would be for the Tigers to play for and win championships; the program’s first 11-win season is a milestone within itself. To be playing in the Celebration Bowl after winning the SWAC for the first time in 14 years is another milestone.
Not to mention:
✅ Coach of the Year
✅ Newcomer of the Year
✅ Freshman of the Year
✅ Nine All-SWAC players
✅ @theswac Championship
Talk that talk @GoJSUTigersFB 🗣️ pic.twitter.com/gfQhotpw8s
— Andscape (@andscape) December 6, 2021
Sanders and the Tigers accomplished this despite the HC being hospitalized for three games as he dealt with complications from foot/toe surgery. The team never fretted and that should be attributed to the culture that Sanders has built in and around the program in a little over a year.
Following the landmark SWAC title win, Sanders spoke to the media.
‘It’s One Thing To Win, But To Win Without Me?’| Deion Sanders Leads Jackson State To First SWAC Title Since 2007
“You can do anything you want to in this world if you just believe and stick to it,” Sanders said. “…I’m so elated right now. It’s one thing to win, but to win with our people?”
MEET US AT THE BENZ! SC STATE 2021 CELEBRATION BOWL TICKETS! @SCStateAthletic @CelebrationBowl #SCSTATE #SCSU #MEAC #HBCU #ATLANTA #CelebrationBowl #FearTheBite #BulldogPridehttps://t.co/Y8EEuUw9XC pic.twitter.com/uIH2BgSeOR
— SCSU Atlanta Alumni (@SCSUATLALUMNI) December 2, 2021
Shedeur Sanders Wins Jerry Rice Award
Shedeur Sanders, the true freshman gunslinger, was named the winner of the Jerry Rice Award on Monday evening. That award is named after former Mississippi Valley State Delta Devils star and Pro Football Hall of Famer Jerry Rice. It’s given annually to the nation’s best freshman in FCS. Sanders is also the first player from an HBCU to take home the prestigious award.
Sanders passed for 3,056 yards, 29 touchdowns and just six interceptions while completing 67.9 percent of his passes. He also used his legs for three scores. He led the Tigers with a poise and calm on par with any of the country’s top signal callers.
Legendary #IBelieve pic.twitter.com/4tygR3zuZ5
— Jackson State Football (@GoJSUTigersFB) December 13, 2021
Momentum Heading Into Early Signing Day
Playing on ESPN in the Celebration Bowl is a big deal, especially with Early Signing Day slated to run from Wednesday, Dec. 15 until Friday, Dec. 17. This should give the Tigers plenty of momentum heading into a full offseason. With every victory at JSU, the more publicity and notoriety the SWAC and HBCU football gain as a whole.
It’s called the “Coach Prime Effect” for a reason.
#BecauseItWorks #TheeILove #GoJSUTigers
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