Circle City Classic Lineup Finalized; Rams Vs. Rattlers Set For October 6, 2007

April 11, 2007

INDIANAPOLIS, IN -- The 24th Annual Coca-Cola Circle City Classic will feature Florida A&M University and Winston-Salem State University in a Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) tilt on Saturday, Oct. 6, at 4 p.m., in the RCA Dome, as part of the American Family Insurance Classic Weekend events.


The Classic is one of the largest and most popular African-American sporting events in the nation. 2007 will mark the 24th and final edition of the Classic in the RCA Dome (formerly Hoosier Dome), as the 2008 event will shift to Lucas Oil Stadium.


Florida A&M (FAMU) returns to the Coca-Cola Circle City Classic in Indianapolis for the sixth time since the Classic began in 1984. The Rattlers are 2-2-1 in Classic competition, including a 59-58 win in an incredible six-overtime game against Hampton University in 1996. FAMU was also a part of the only tie in Classic history when the Rattlers faced Jackson State University in a 1988 defensive struggle, ending in a 10-10 draw. Coach Rubin Carter and his squad will look to repeat last year's victory over Winston-Salem State. Carter brings years of NFL experience, both as a standout for the Denver Broncos and defensive line coach, to the Rattlers and his hard-nosed mentality has been rubbing off since his hiring in July of 2005. The Rattlers are coming off a 7-4 season in 2006 and will be joined in Indianapolis by The Marching 100.


The Winston-Salem State (WSSU) Rams will make their first Classic appearance and will be looking for revenge. WSSU lost to FAMU last season in a thrilling 14-point, fourth-quarter comeback in Tallahassee, Fla. That game marked the first time these two historically black colleges faced one another on the gridiron. WSSU ended their inaugural Division I football season and first MEAC campaign with a 4-7 overall record. In his first 10 years coaching at WSSU, Kermit Blount has led his team to three Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA) Championship appearances, two CIAA titles and two Pioneer Bowl appearances. He was also awarded back-to-back CIAA "Coach of the Year" honors in 1999 and 2000. Winston-Salem State is best-known for its late, legendary basketball coach, Clarence "Big House" Gaines, and hardcourt legend Earl "The Pearl" Monroe, but the football program has produced NFL players in Yancey Thigpen, Oronde Gadsden and Richard Huntley.


The American Family Insurance Classic Weekend includes the Miss Coca-Cola Circle City Classic Coronation, the Coaches Luncheon, the Indiana Black Expo Golf Tournament, and the Black Alumni Council's College Fair. More than 150,000 spectators take part in the various events as part of the Classic. A portion of the game's proceeds help fund the Indiana Black Expo/Circle City Classic Scholarship Program.


The Classic's mission is to support educational achievement, promote cultural excellence, while showcasing the spirit, energy and tradition of America's historically black colleges and universities. The celebration embraces the entire community in a host of activities including music, comedy, arts and parades.


Indiana Black Expo, Inc. and Indiana Sports Corporation host the Coca-Cola Circle City Classic. For more information on Coca-Cola Circle City Classic programs, including a complete schedule of events for the American Family Insurance Classic Weekend, visit


For additional information on WSSU football, or to arrange interviews with coaches, athletic administrators, or individual student-athletes, contact the WSSU Office of Athletic Media Relations at (336) 750-2143 or log on to the Official Website of WSSU Athletics at


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