Events DC Celebrates Successful Week of Activities Surrounding the AT&T Nation's Football Classic
WASHINGTON, D.C. – The fifth annual AT&T Nation’s Football Classic® on Friday, Sept. 18 was billed as the Battle of the #RealHU, and Hampton Quarterback David Watford continued his prolific start to the season to lead his team to a 37-19 victory over Howard University at historic RFK Stadium. The University of Virginia transfer rushed for two touchdowns and passed for a third, en route to victory, earning MVP honors on a stellar evening before 16,342 fans.
In the first Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) game of the season for both teams, Howard drew close late in the first half, scoring their first points of the season on an Aquanius Freeman 35-yard touchdown scamper, which he capped with a two-point conversion to draw Howard within five at 13-8. But when Hampton took the ensuing kickoff down the field to convert a 30-yard field goal as the half expired, the Pirates opened a cushion they would never relinquish.
The teams traded scores throughout a somewhat sloppy yet high-scoring second half, which saw Hampton trade lost fumbles with Howard interceptions. Freeman led all rushers with 129 yards, while running back Christopher Dukes paved the way for Hampton with 70 yards rushing, including his first touchdown of the season.
The game marked a triumphant return of the Classic, a traditional matchup of HBCU football teams. Prior to the game, large crowds enjoyed the free Pepsi® Fan Festival, on the RFK Festival Grounds, which began with a drumline showcase featuring Bowie State and Hampton University drum lines, and concluded with high-energy live performances by national recording artists 2 Chainz and Tink.
"The Hampton-Howard rivalry brought out all the emotion that was resonating out of both fan bases leading up to the game on social media," said Erik A. Moses, senior vice president and managing director of Events DC, Sports & Entertainment, who co-founded and produces the AT&T Nation’s Football Classic. "We were excited to bring this classic rivalry back to historic RFK Stadium and are looking forward to hosting the Battle of the Real HU again next year."
While the game itself was indeed entertaining, Moses pointed out the weeks’ worth of happenings truly extends beyond the playing field. "All of our events, from Technoir: The Innovator’s Classic and the HBCU College and Career Fair, to the AT&T Kickoff Rally and Pepsi Fan Festival, and student debate to #HashtagLunchbag and everything in between, this year’s activities were incredibly well-attended, highly successful and truly embodied the spirit of the Classic.”
For information about the AT&T Nation’s Football Classic, please visit nationsfootballclassic.com.
About the AT&T Nation's Football Classic®
The AT&T Nation's Football Classic® is a black college football game held annually at RFK Stadium in Washington, D.C. This year, the game features Howard University against Morehouse College. Organized by Events DC, the AT&T Nation's Football Classic® was created to celebrate the passion and tradition of the college football experience, recognize the history of service to others by the students, faculty and alumni of historically black colleges and universities, highlight the unity of African American culture, and honor the heritage and excellence of these proud institutions. Tickets for the AT&T Nation’s Football Classic® are on sale now at Ticketmaster.com, Ticketmaster outlets, the Howard University Box Office at Cramton Auditorium and the Morehouse College Bookstore. Seats are priced at $25 and $50. For more information, please visit nationsfootballclassic.com.
ATTNFC website: www.NationsFootballClassic.com
ATTNFC Twitter: @NationsClassic
ATTNFC Facebook: www.Facebook.com/NationsFootballClassic
ATTNFC Instagram: @NationsFootballClassic
ATTNFC YouTube: www.YouTube.com/nationsclassic
Howard University website: www.howard.edu
Hampton University website: www.hamptonu.edu
About Events DC
Events DC, the official convention and sports authority for the District of Columbia, delivers premier event services and flexible venues across the nation’s capital. Leveraging the power of a world-class destination and creating amazing attendee experiences, Events DC generates economic and community benefits through the attraction and promotion of business, athletic, entertainment and cultural activities. Events DC oversees the Walter E. Washington Convention Center, an anchor of the District’s hospitality and tourism economy that generates over $400 million annually in total economic impact, and the historic Carnegie Library at Mt. Vernon Square. Events DC manages the Stadium-Armory campus, which includes Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Stadium and surrounding Festival Grounds, the non-military functions of the DC Armory and Maloof Skate Park at RFK Stadium. Events DC also built and now serves as landlord for Nationals Park, the first LEED-certified major professional sports stadium in the United States. For more information, please visit www.eventsdc.com.