Thursday, June 23, 2016

Southern Heritage Classic tickets on sale Friday for JSU, TSU showdown

MEMPHIS, Tennessee -- Are you ready for some football?

Tickets to the 27th Southern Heritage Classic presented by FedEx went on sale June 10th. More than 50,000 fans from Jackson State University and Tennessee State University will gather Sept. 8-10 in the River City to witness a lively longstanding football rivalry.

Even if you’re not a football fanatic, there will be a plethora of exciting entertainment that includes a parade, fashion show, golf tournament and not one but two star-studded concerts. Of course, there will be plenty of tailgating.

“The Fun Never Stops” is the theme for 2016, and no one has more fun than JSU Tigers and supporters. Many look forward to the Southern Heritage Classic, and founder Fred Jones is no different.

“We hope to repeat the nice weather of last year and bring out, even more, fans. The classic is dedicated to presenting quality events that allow people to enjoy themselves while supporting these two wonderful universities and the local economy. It’s not uncommon for some of the events to sell out, so the earlier individuals purchase their tickets the better,” Jones said.

Tickets can be purchased at Jackson State Athletics Ticket Office at 601-979-2420;; and Ticketmaster outlets at


The JSU vs. TSU football game weekend is one of the most thrilling productions of the year.

Sept. 8: Attendees will be treated to the Grammy Award-winning vocals of Stephanie Mills and comedian Jammin Jay Lamont. The concert will be at the Orpheum Theatre at 8 p.m.

Sept. 9: Everyone should slide into his or her best all-white apparel and join the funky R&B band MAZE featuring Frankie Beverly for the Classic Music Festival’s “All White Friday” at the Landers Center at 8 p.m. Neo-soul artist KEM will also hit the stage, and Jammin Jay Lamont returns as host.

Sept. 10: JSU and TSU supporters will swarm the parking lot of Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium for one of the most monumental tailgating enterprises ever held in the soulful South. Expect cool giveaways from classic sponsors, in addition to vast quantities of food and an endless supply of enjoyment and camaraderie.

The climax begins at 6 p.m. when JSU and TSU face off to determine the “baddest” football team in the land. Expect a routinely amazing halftime performance from the No. 1 ranked HBCU Band for 2015 — JSU’s Sonic Boom of the South followed by TSU’s Aristocrat of Bands. After the game, the highly anticipated and fiery battle of the bands will bring the evening to a close. For those who still have energy, Memphis nightlife is always ready to shake things up.


The host hotel for 2016 is the Sheraton Memphis Downtown. For a listing of other suggested hotels, visit


The Southern Heritage Classic (SHC) provides an annual cultural celebration as the premier sports and entertainment event in Memphis, helping to create a strong economic impact and promote higher education. Each year, the teams’ participation allows them to earn dollars to support their institutions of higher learning. Since the classic began in 1990, JSU and TSU have earned more than $10 million collectively. Students, alumni, and fans see the importance of the classic and don’t mind coming year after year to support the event while enjoying themselves. It’s also become a welcomed tradition for many people who make the classic a part of their family reunion, class reunions, and other important gatherings. Additionally, the classic brings tourism dollars to Memphis. A 2014 study conducted by the University of Memphis revealed that each year $21 million is pumped into the local economy.


SHC is sponsored by FedEx and other major supporters such as AutoZone, Allstate Insurance, Nike, Carrier Corporation, Tennessee Governor’s Highway Safety Office and Coors Light.

Jones said he considers it a blessing to be able to host the event each year.

“I don’t take the success the classic has had lightly. Jackson State and Tennessee State are wonderful schools to work with, and we are all grateful for the dedicated individuals who return to Memphis year after year and bring new friends with them. I appreciate their support,” he said.

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