The Celebration Bowl, in its fifth year, will be televised live on ABC for the fifth consecutive year, kicking off at noon ET, on Saturday, Dec. 21, from Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta.
North Carolina A&T State and Alcorn State will meet in Atlanta for the third time in the five-year history of the Bowl.
The Celebration Bowl is the lone bowl game to feature FCS schools, and its winner is often considered the Black College National Champion. The Aggies won the inaugural game, 41-34 over Alcorn State in 2015, and they defeated the Braves 24-22 last year.
The MEAC leads the bowl series 3-1, with the Aggies accounting for all three wins.
North Carolina A&T State quarterback Lamar Raynard was named Offensive MVP of last year’s game after throwing for 292 yards and two touchdowns. Richie Kittle was named Defensive MVP after racking up nine tackles, including four for a loss.
The Aggies made it to Atlanta for the fourth time after blowing out rival North Carolina Central 54-0 in the Aggie-Eagle Classic to claim a share of the MEAC title. Jah-Maine Martin ran for 122 yards and two touchdowns on just 11 carries. Elijah Bell caught three passes for 109 yards and two touchdowns to give him 200 for his career.
It was their 11th MEAC championship and their fifth conference title in six years. The Aggies are on the best run of any MEAC school since South Carolina State won six of seven titles from 1977-83.
Alcorn State punched its ticket to Atlanta by defeating Southern 39-24 on Saturday, Dec. 7 to claim the SWAC championship.
The Braves have won 13 SWAC titles, including four in the last six years.
LeCharles Pringle was named Offensive MVP of the SWAC Championship Game after catching five passes for a career-high 145 yards and a touchdown. Juwan Taylor was named Defensive MVP after tying his career high with 11 tackles. He also had a pick and a forced fumble.
Both schools had a number of players named to their respective all-conference teams.
Alcorn State quarterback Felix Harper and offensive lineman Michael Ajumobi were named First Team All-SWAC on offense, while linebacker Solomon Muhammad and defensive back Qwynnterrio Cole were named First Team All-SWAC on defense.
Offensive lineman Kevin Hall and punter Corey McCullough were named to the second team.
North Carolina A&T State running back Jah-Maine Martin, linemen Dacquari Wilson and Marcus Pettiford, and kicker Noel Ruiz were each named First Team All-MEAC.
Receiver Elijah Bell, lineman Dontae Keys, defensive linemen Jermaine McDaniel and Justin Cates, linebackers Kyin Howard and Jacob Roberts, defensive back Mac McCain III and punter Michael Rivers were all named Second Team All-MEAC.
Offensive lineman De’jour Simpson, defensive lineman Devin Harrell, linebacker Joseph Stuckey and defensive back Antoine Wilder were named to the third team.