LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla., April 4, 2014 – In a celebration of diversity, higher education and football, the annual MEAC/SWAC Challenge Presented by Disney will kick off at Bright House Networks Stadium at the University of Central Florida (UCF) on Sunday, Aug. 31. Now in its 10th year, the Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) football matchup will feature the North Carolina A&T Aggies of the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) and the Alabama A&M Bulldogs of the Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC).
Held during college football season’s opening weekend, the 2014 MEAC/SWAC Challenge will attract more than 20,000 fans to the game. The UCF Board of Trustees recently approved the use of the stadium, which will serve as the game’s interim home during renovations on the Florida Citrus Bowl Stadium where the game is usually played.
“Disney has a longstanding relationship with UCF and we’re thrilled to host the event in the Knights’ stadium,” said Nancy Gidusko, director of Community Relations and Minority Business Development for the Walt Disney World Resort. “As we look forward to these two exciting teams taking the field, we’re proud to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the MEAC/SWAC Challenge here in Central Florida.”
The MEAC/SWAC Challenge Presented by Disney is more than a gridiron spectacle – it’s an HBCU tradition that celebrates the contributions of historically black institutions and their alumni to education, athletics, the arts and communities. The four-day weekend event includes a high school career seminar, band showcase, an alumni recognition reception and the Sunday game, televised on an ESPN network.
“North Carolina A&T and Alabama A&M are sure to make an exhilarating MEAC/SWAC Challenge debut in our 10th anniversary game,” said Pete Derzis, senior vice president and general manager, ESPN Regional Television. “Without a doubt, student-athletes and fans will create wonderful memories throughout the weekend on UCF’s campus and at Bright House Networks Stadium.”
For the past seven years, Disney has sponsored the event as part of the company’s ongoing commitment to diversity, education and community. Since its inception, the game has showcased 13 different HBCU institutions.