COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) — Central State University and Kentucky State University will kick off the 2021 football season on August 28 in the inaugural Classic for Columbus at Ohio Stadium.
The two Historically Black Universities have been rivals since 1947. The game also features two of the most prestigious bands in the country: The Invincible Marching Marauders and The Mighty Marching Thorobreds.
Both schools did not have a football season last year due to the pandemic. Bobby Rome II enters his first season at CSU after taking over the program in February 2020.
“I’m excited for kids to be able to be on that platform,” Rome said. “I call it the biggest football platform in the world cause to me I think it’s one of the biggest stadiums in the world and I think our kids deserve that.”
Meanwhile, Charlie Jackson is set to begin his third season at KSU and second full season. Jackson took over the program in 2018 when the Thorobreds were in the midst of a terrible season that ended with zero wins and 10 losses. But in his first full year, Jackson led KSU to seven wins, the highest total win improvement in the NCAA. Jackson was previously an assistant with the Atlanta Falcons.
Several local players will return to their home city of Columbus, including Kentucky State senior and Linden-McKinley grad Quadarrious McDonald as well as Central State senior and Brookhaven grad Keandre Powell.
“It’s a blessing to be able to come back to the Shoe and put on for my family and friends and definitely play in front of my teammates and friends,” Powell said.
Classic For Columbus Events Saturday include:
- The Battelle “college, career and community” fair with approximately 36 businesses and organizations on site at French Field House between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m.
- Two NFL “Mom’s” presentations at the RPAC Main Gym at 9 a.m. and 11 a.m.
- A “FanGate” outside of French Field House and St. John Arena from 8 a.m. until 3 p.m.
- A skills and drills competition will take place at noon at Lincoln Tower Park Field
- A drum line will begin at noon outside of St. John Arena and parade over to Lincoln Tower Park Field
- A high school “battle of the bands” take place at 1 p.m. at Lincoln Tower Park Field
- A financial literacy and wealth building workshop in the recruit room at Ohio Stadium at 1 p.m.
- Central State vs. Kentucky State at 3 p.m. at Ohio Stadium.
Important information for fans
Masks – Students, faculty, staff and visitors to all Ohio State campuses and medical facilities are required to wear masks indoors, regardless of vaccination status. Masks are required outdoors for unvaccinated individuals when they cannot maintain physical distancing. Vaccinated people are not required to mask outdoors.
Game Tickets – Most Central State vs. Kentucky State game tickets will be digital and will be displayed on fans’ mobile devices. Fans should download the Ohio State Buckeyes App to access their tickets. Only tickets generated through the Ohio State Buckeyes APP or Ticketmaster App will grant entry into the game. Screenshots will not get you into the game. Ohio Stadium gates will open at 1:30 p.m. Tickets for the Classic for Columbus available online here.
Event Parking – Parking lots open at 8 a.m. Parking is $10 (credit cards only) in the lots and garages surrounding Ohio Stadium. Exceptions are the west stadium lot and parts of east stadium, which are permit lots. Public parking lots include the Lane Avenue, Tuttle Road and Neil Avenue garages, and the North St. John Arena, South French Field House, Northwest Stadium and riverbank surface lots.