MEAC champion North Carolina Central Eagles will play their second Cricket Celebration Bowl December 17 in Atlanta

The seventh annual Cricket Celebration Bowl, played Saturday, December 17 at 12:00 p.m. ET at Atlanta’s Mercedes-Benz Stadium and televised live on ABC, has received its first invitation to the Mid- Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC), North Carolina, pronounced Central University. The Eagles defeated rival Norfolk State 48-14 on Saturday to earn the invite. They play against the champion of the Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC).

“Congratulations to MEAC Champion North Carolina Central for punching his ticket to the Cricket Celebration Bowl,” said Executive Director John Grant, who was there at the game in Norfolk, Virginia to present the official invitation to Trey Oliver, head coach of North Carolina Central. “We’re excited to have the Eagles make their second appearance and join us in this championship game.”

North Carolina Central last played in the Cricket Celebration Bowl in 2016 when they faced Grambling State.

Now in its seventh year, the Cricket Celebration Bowl has established itself as the premier college football bowl game celebrating the heritage, heritage, pageantry and tradition of Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs). The championship game between the MEAC and SWAC champions will be televised nationally on ABC. ESPN Events is working with its sponsors and Divine Nine’s Greek organizations to organize the game’s side events, including a fan experience, charitable projects and more.

North Carolina A&T won its first Celebration Bowl game in 2015. Overall, the Aggies have won four of the six Celebration Bowl titles, including the three straight from 2017-19. After a year-long absence due to the pandemic, the 2021 Celebration Bowl returned with a sold-out audience of 48,653.

Celebration Bowl Games (since 2015):
2015 North Carolina defeated A&T. Alcorn State, 41-34
2016 Grambling State def. North Carolina Center, 10-9
2017 North Carolina defeated A&T. Grumbling State, 21-14
2018 North Carolina defeated A&T. Alcorn State, 24-22
2019 North Carolina defeated A&T. Alkorn, 64-44

Not played in 2020 due to pandemic

2021 State of South Carolina defeated. Jackson State, 31-10

Fans can purchase tickets to the Cricket Celebration Bowl online at or, or call Ticketmaster at 1-800-745-3000. Prices range from $20 to $210 excluding taxes and fees. A full list of events surrounding the game is available on the event’s website.

For MEAC fans, the Atlanta Marriott Marquis is offering a special rate available December 17-18. Visit the Celebration Bowl website for more information.

For SWAC fans, a special rate is being offered at the Hilton Atlanta, available December 17-18. Visit the Celebration Bowl website for more information.

Additional hotel rooms are available at the Holiday Inn Express and Suites Atlanta Downtown and Spring Hill Suites. Visit the Celebration Bowl website for more information.

ESPN Events

ESPN Events, a division of ESPN, owns and operates a portfolio of collegiate sporting events nationwide. In 2022, the 32-event schedule will include three preseason college football kickoff games, 17 college bowl games, 11 college basketball events and one college softball event, accounting for approximately 400 hours of live programming and reach almost 64 million viewers and attracts over 800,000 visitors annually. With offices in more than 10 cities across the country, ESPN Events builds relationships with conferences, schools and local communities while providing teams and fans with unique experiences.

For more information, visit the official website, Facebook, Twitter or YouTube pages.

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