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Background on the Pigskin Classic

Sponsored by the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics

The plans for the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics (NACDA) to sponsor a second preseason football game began in 1985 and involved former Freedom Bowl Executive Director Tom Starr and Jack Lindquist, then executive vice president of creative marketing concepts for Walt Disney Attractions. However, plans for the game did not proceed until 1988 when Charlie McClendon, then executive director of the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) began discussing the need for funding of the AFCA's then-existing retirement fund for assistant coaches, the American Football Coaches Retirement Trust (AFCRT).

NACDA sponsored the legislation at the NCAA convention in 1989 and the proposal passed, leading the way for the second preseason game. It is an allowable 12th game for the participating teams.

From 1990 to 1994, the Pigskin Classic was sponsored by the Walt Disney Company, was known as the Disneyland Pigskin Classic and was played in Anaheim Stadium. In 1994, upon the conclusion of the contract with Disney, NACDA reached an agreement with the University of Michigan to serve as the host of the 1995 Classic, marking the first time the Classic would be played at a college site. With this format, the site would change yearly, and Brigham Young University was selected to host the second game at a collegiate site. In subsequent years, the game has been hosted by Northwestern University and played at Soldier Field; by the University of Southern California and played at the L.A. Coliseum; by Penn State University and played on campus at Beaver Stadium; by Florida State University and played at Alltel Stadium; and last year, by the University of Nebraska and played on campus at Memorial Stadium.

Proceeds from the Pigskin Classic go to the AFCA, NACDA and its foundation and the participating institutions. As a result of the game and the NACDA-sponsored Kickoff Classic, close to $500,000 in postgraduate scholarships are awarded annually. This includes a $5,000 postgraduate scholarship being awarded one student-athlete from each of the four institutions participating in the preseason games. Since 1983, the NACDA Foundation has provided more than $10.2 million in postgraduate scholarships.

The NACDA Foundation provides educational assistance to NACDA members and to student-athletes. The Foundation annually sponsors workshops and clinics to continue in the educational efforts of its member athletics directors, assistants and associates. This includes workshops for the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA), the National Athletic Trainers Association (NATA), facilities and fund raising workshops and seminars on the administrative issues of interest to athletics directors. The Foundation also sponsors an internship program for aspiring athletics administrators. Currently more than 100 students from more than 50 NACDA member institutions have benefited from this program, spending from six to nine months working at NACDA's national office.

  • Ohio State Leaders
  • Pigskin Background
  • NACDA Background
  • Texas Tech Leaders
  • Pigskin Results
  • NACDA Profile
  • Pigskin Classic XII
  • Pigskin Classic
  • Kickoff Classic