The anticipation for the 2018 Florida Classic is at an all-time high for students at Florida A&M University. The FAMU football team is in the middle of a memorable season as it sits in first place in the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference.
The Florida Classic is a historic weekend in Orlando that is built around the annual football game that has been taking place there since 1997. The FAMU football team will take on Bethune-Cookman University.
The rivalry extends beyond half a century as this will mark the 74th game between the two HBCUs and the 66th edition of the rivalry at the Florida Classic. BCU has won seven years straight against FAMU, but this year feels different for some students.
Senior agronomy major Oswold Pachecio believes this game will go down in history if FAMU wins.
“FAMU has the chance to change the course of history and a chance at redemption,” he said. “Hopefully the football team can bring it home for all the Rattlers.”
While the football team is on the heels of a historic season, the players are still not going to underestimate their opponents.
“I feel confident because we respect our opponents and with that being said we are prepared for every team in that manner,” said fourth year outside linebacker Antonio Miller. “Win everyday with life and the winning habits should carry over to game day,” he said.
The Rattlers have been on a tear this season as they are having one of their best seasons in recent years under the tutelage of new head coach Willie Simmons. This is their first winning season since 2011. They even defeated the No. 1 team in North Carolina A&T last month.
Although they suffered from two straight losses the excitement entering the classic game continues to rise as they try to fight their way to the MEAC championship and a berth in the Celebration Bowl Dec. 15 in Atlanta.
“It’s definitely going to be a crazy game – people are talking about it everyday,” said fourth year criminal justice major Wayne Gallo. “I’ve been saying that FAMU is going to win this game since after they lost last year.”
The historic game takes place this Saturday along with a host of other festivities that occur during this epic weekend. The game will kick-off on at 2 p.m.