Barclays Center TO HOST Big Apple Classic IN BROOKLYN

Dec 18, 2012

BROOKLYN (December 18, 2012) - Big Apple Classic, the original Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) basketball event, has signed a multi-year agreement with Barclays Center and will be held at the Brooklyn venue starting December 2013. The annual showcase features the iconic southern basketball rivals, Howard University vs. Hampton University and Virginia State University vs. Virginia Union University.

“Hosting Big Apple Classic in Brooklyn presents a unique opportunity,” said Ken Johnson, CEO of Johnson, Inc. and Founder of Big Apple Classic. “Not only is Barclays Center state-of-the-art, but Brooklyn’s love of college basketball is evident as soon as you step foot in the building. The energy is unlike anywhere else.”

Off the court, Big Apple Classic (BAC) will provide an exciting platform for BAC festivities, including a dynamic drumline exhibition, a college fair and educational symposium, and an unforgettable halftime show.

“We are proud to host a tournament that supports the strong tradition of Historically Black Colleges and Universities,” said Brett Yormark, CEO of Barclays Center. “Our college basketball events this season have brought a lot of excitement and energy to Barclays Center and we are thrilled to add Big Apple Classic to our lineup for next season.”

“This is a double win for Virginia State University,” said Peggy Davis, Athletic Director for VSU. “We have a strong alumni base in the Brooklyn area and our student-athletes always enjoy the opportunity to play in a professional venue.”

“Big Apple Classic is a huge men's college basketball event and a great showcase for Historically Black College and University programs,” said Louis “Skip” Perkins, Director of Athletics for Howard University. “So to compete in the Big Apple Classic in the brand new Barclays Center in the heart of Brooklyn, N.Y., is an honor and a huge statement for the Bison family."

A portion of the proceeds from BAC will be donated to support the philanthropic efforts of Educational Learning Opportunities, a non-profit organization specifically designed to provide student mentoring, educational workshops, personal and professional development, as well as career planning.

General on-sale ticket information will be announced in 2013. For more information about the BAC weekend, visit www.thebigappleclassic.com

About Big Apple Classic

A historic event, the Big Apple Classic was launched seven years ago as the first ever HBCU basketball competition. Produced by Johnson, Inc., a Richmond, VA-based marketing firm, the Big Apple Classic has one primary goal: to increase the awareness of Historical Black Colleges and Universities in the Northeast region. In addition to exciting basketball action featuring top CIAA and MEAC teams, BAC attendees enjoy the hottest entertainment, an HBCU college fair and more. In fact, the Big Apple Classic has become the ultimate family and social event that draws thousands of alumni, students, fans of participating schools, and the general public. The Big Apple Classic’s commitment to the community doesn’t stop with promoting higher education. Each year, the BAC partners with a non-profit organization to donate a portion of ticket proceeds to a charitable cause that impacts the African American community.