INDIANAPOLIS — When Indiana Black Expo officials announced there would be no football game at this year's Circle City Classic, it turned some heads....and also fired up some social media armchair quarterbacks. The answer to those critics is arguably the major part of the 2022 edition of the classic, and one in which supporters say was the time most people actually would fill the stands of Lucas Oil Stadium in past years.
Three HBCU marching bands will battle to be the best at the 38th Circle City Classic on Saturday, September 24. Bands are traveling from Kentucky State University in Frankfort as well as two Alabama HBCU's — Miles College from Birmingham and Talladega College. The band from Lincoln University in southern Pennsylvania will perform an exhibition at the show. "We have always wanted to make sure that we are highlighting HBCU's," said Dian Foreman, Indiana Black Expo's Youth and Family Manager. "There's always been this phrase 'they arrive when it's time for halftime', they're ready for the halftime show. So you'll be able to enjoy the entire halftime show."
The other major part of Circle City Classic's main event at Lucas Oil is a classic Greek organization step show, with seven groups representing the "Divine Nine" Black college sororities and fraternities. "The teams are coming from Kentucky. They're coming from Indiana, they're coming from Washington, D.C. and they're coming from Philly," Foreman said. "First place gets $7000, second place gets $5000, third place gets $2500. This is something great to put back into those organizations."
The warm up for the main event starts on Friday with the annual Pep Rally on Monument Circle and the Classic Cabaret at the Indiana Convention Center, featuring Jodeci, Bell Biv Devoe and local artist Alaina Renae.
On Saturday, the annual parade steps off at 10:00am. There will be an HBCU Education Fair at Lucas Oil Stadium starting at 11:00am, following by the Battle of the Bands at 3:00pm. The Greek Step Show will immediately follow the Battle of the Bands.
Circle City Classic weekend wraps up Saturday night with DJ Geno's Classic Comedy Jam, featuring D.L. Hughley and Rickey Smiley. It's at 7:30pm at the Murat Theatre at Old National Centre.
The ultimate goal of the classic is to send more Hoosier students to college who otherwise couldn't afford to go. "We've given out nearly $5 million in scholarships so far, so when you come and put your dollars into these events, that's where your money is going," Foreman said.
Click on the link above to watch our entire interview, and click here for more information on Circle City Classic.