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Bethune-Cookman cancels football season opener

September 2, 2004

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- A category four hurricane threatening to hit Florida has forced Bethune-Cookman College officials to cancel Saturday’s football season opener against Savannah State University.

Due to the lack of comparable open dates during the 2004 season, the game between Bethune-Cookman College and Savannah State University will not be rescheduled.

“While we recognize that thousands of fans have a vested interest in this outstanding event, the issue of the public safety and the well being of our students and friends is our primary concern,” said Lynn W. Thompson, Bethune-Cookman Athletics Director.

This marks the first time in 50 years that the Wildcats have not played the Gateway Classic football game. Also, the second time in four seasons the Wildcats have had to cancel a game against Savannah State. The first coming in 2001 when the Bethune-Cookman cancelled their game against Savannah State due to the September 11th tragedy.

The Wildcats will open their season on the road against the University of Arkansas Pine Bluff. This marks the 10th season Bethune-Cookman will play only 10 regular season games, and the second time in Head Coach Alvin Wyatt’ s coaching career. The Wildcats has had only one losing season when playing a 10-game regular season schedule.

Hurricane Frances is expected to hit the Central Florida area this weekend with winds up to 145 miles per hour.

Bethune-Cookman College has closed effective at 1 pm on Wednesday and announcements concerning reopening will be announced after the storm has passed.

All other home athletic events including the September 1, 2004 home volleyball match against Savannah State have also been cancelled.

Refunds on all tickets purchased for the 2004 Gateway Classic can be obtained through the outlet that the tickets were purchased from. For refunds on all tickets purchased through the Bethune-Cookman Ticket Office call 386-481-2292.

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