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Down East Viking Football Classic


The Down East Viking Football Classic began in 1998. ECSU administrators Dr. Claudie Mackey and Dr. Edward McLean brought the idea to then ECSU Board of Trustees Chairman and City of Rocky Mount Assistant City Manager Charles Penny for consideration. After discussion and review by the City Council of Rocky Mount and former Mayor Frederick Turnage, Elizabeth City State University, under the leadership of former Chancellor Mickey L. Burnim, and the City of Rocky Mount entered into an agreement to host the Down East Viking Football Classic in Rocky Mount, NC. The inaugural game was held in September 1998. Since that time, ECSU and the City have maintained their partnership, hosting the Classic each year as indicated below:

1998 1st Annual FSU 10 ECSU 7
1999 2nd Annual (Cancelled due to Hurricane Floyd) ECSU vs. North Carolina Central University (NCCU)
2000 3rd Annual FSU 32 ECSU 26
2001 4th Annual NCCU 31 ECSU 21
2002 5th Annual FSU 16 ECSU 0
2003 6th Annual ECSU 25 NCCU 23
2004 7th Annual FSU 17 ECSU 0
2005 8th Annual SAC 7 ECSU 0
2006 9th Annual ECSU 41 FSU 31
2007 10th Annual Shaw 20 ECSU 17 - OT
2008 11th Annual ECSU 24 SAC 13
2009 12th Annual ECSU 35 Chowan 30
2010 13th Annual
ECSU 38 Fayetteville State 26
2011 14th Annual
ECSU 49 Livingstone 7
2012 15th Annual ECSU 23 Saint Augustine's 21

The Down East Classic, now in its 16th year, has grown each year drawing over 10,000 fans to the Rocky Mount Athletic Complex. Fans have the opportunity to enjoy a CIAA football game, golf challenge, college and regional high school bands, and a variety of social and entertainment activities. Through additional recruitment and outreach activities, ECSU also offers scholarship opportunities for students in the Rocky Mount-Nash-Edgecombe-Wilson areas. The CIAA (Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association) is a premier NCAA Division II athletic conference. Elizabeth City State University, located in northeastern North Carolina, is a constituent institution of The University of North Carolina. This year's opponent, Fayetteville State University, is located in Fayetteville, NC.

About The Colleges

Elizabeth City State University

Elizabeth City State University was founded on March 3, 1891 when House Bill 383 of the North Carolina General Assembly established a normal school for the specific purpose of "teaching and training teachers of the colored race to teach in the common schools of North Carolina." Nearly 125 years later, ECSU now off-ers 37 baccalaureate degree programs, four master's degree programs, and the doctor of pharmacy program through the UNC Chapel Hill Eshelman School of Pharmacy at ECSU.

Elizabeth City State University, a constituent institution of the University of North Carolina, offers baccalaureate, graduate, and professional programs for a diverse student body. The institution's rich heritage provides a firm foundation for its educational endeavors, as well as its role in serving the needs and aspirations of individuals and society.

Through teaching, research, and community engagement, Elizabeth City State University provides a student-centered environment, delivered in a manner that enhances student learning, while preparingits graduates for leadership roles and lifelong learning. The university is also a leader in facilitating sustainable economic growth, while safeguarding the unique culture and natural resources of the region.

ECSU has repeatedly received national attention for the quality of its academic programs, unique opportunities and affordability. The U.S. News and World Report 2013 Edition of Best Colleges ranked ECSU third in the Top Public Schools Regional Colleges (South) category and #20 among the nation's Historically Black Colleges and Universities. In addition, Elizabeth City State University ranked Number 1 among baccalaureate colleges in Washington Monthly's 2012 college rankings.

Fayetteville State University

Fayetteville State University is a constituent institution of the University of North Carolina and the second-oldest public institution of higher education in the state. Founded in 1867 as the Howard School for the education of African Americans, today FSU serves a growing student body of over 6,300 and ranks among the nation's most diverse campus communities.

FSU's enrollment has increased rapidly in the past few years while at the same time average SAT scores for entering students have also improved. The University has already reached the 2008 projection of more than 6000 students. A $45.5 million campus construction and renovation campaign is underway to accommodate additional students.

New undergraduate degree programs have been established, including undergraduate degrees in biotechnology, communications, forensic science, management information systems, and generic nursing. In addition, there are new graduate programs that offer the master's of arts in teaching and the master's of science in criminal justice. Altogether FSU boasts 43 undergraduate programs, 23 master's degree programs, and one doctoral program in educational leadership. These programs vary in areas of the arts and sciences, business and economics, and education.

The university consistently ranks among the nation's top producers of African American baccalaureate and master's graduates. FSU ranks particularly high in the state and the country in producing African American and other minority graduates in disciplines like mathematics, psychology, computer science, education, social sciences and history.