Examiner Staff Writer
September football is returning to RFK Stadium next year -- and with it could come millions of dollars of spending in the region and much-needed revenue for the District.
The Washington Convention and Sports Authority board on Thursday approved a marketing contract to bring a match-up between two historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) to D.C.'s RFK Stadium next Labor Day weekend.
Dubbed the Nation's Football Classic, the event is expected to generate up to $6 million in spending during its first weekend according to the WCSA, and could increase to $30 million in future years.
Often called black college reunions, more than 40 similar events are held across the country and regularly draw sell-out crowds and pump millions of dollars into the local economy. Last month's 22nd Atlanta Football Classic between Tennessee State University and Florida A&M University attracted 51,500 attendees and nearly $30 million in spending.
"This is more than just a football game, this is a huge cultural experience," said Erik A. Moses, senior vice president and managing director of WCSA's sports, entertainment and special events division.
"It makes a lot of sense, especially when we happen to have one of the more well-known HBCUs in our own backyard in Howard [University]," Moses said.
The teams expected to play next year have sent letters of intent but the board will likely not make an official announcement until later this month.
The classic would be the first football game played in September at RFK Stadium since the Washington Redskins played there in 1995. The EagleBank Bowl, which debuted in December 2008 and is committed through 2013, marked the return of football to RFK.
Read more at the Washington Examiner: http://washingtonexaminer.com/local/nation039s-football-classic-coming-rfk-2011#ixzz16jSBgDb0