ATLANTA, GA (August 25, 2023) — Legendary head coach Buddy Pough and the South Carolina State Bulldogs will kick-off the 2023 campaign on road Saturday (Aug. 26th) in Atlanta at the annual MEAC/SWAC Challenge versus SWAC foe Jackson State inside Center Parc Stadium.

Kick-off is set for 7:30 p.m. and will be televised live on ABC.

The rematch of the 2021 Cricket Celebration Bowl will be the sixth matchup between the teams, but only the second since 1994. Buddy Pough is in his 22nd and final season as head coach, announcing Thursday his intentions to retire from at his alma mater after the season. The Bulldogs dominates in MEAC/SWAC Challenges leading the way 3-1, while Jackson State is 0-2.

SERIES: This will be the sixth matchup between the Tigers and the Bulldogs, all played since 1991. Jackson State won the first two meetings in the series (17-6 in Jackson in 1991; 41-3 in Columbia, S.C. in 1992). South Carolina State has won the last three matchups (34-33 in Indianapolis in 1993; 26-22 in Columbia in 1994; 31-10 in Atlanta in 2021)

MEAC/SWAC Challenge Series
• This will be the 5th appearance for the Bulldogs and Coach Pough in the annual
MEAC/SWAC Challenge. SC State holds a 3-1 record overall.
*2005 South Carolina State 27-14 Alabama State Birmingham (W)
*2009 South Carolina State 34-31 Grambling State (W)
*2015 South Carolina State 35-7 Arkansas Pine-Bluff (W)
*2017 Southern 14-8 South Carolina State (L)
*2020 Canceled due to Coronavirus Pandemic – Scheduled to play- Grambling
State and South Carolina State – Atlanta, Ga.

Eight (8) South Carolina State Bulldogs were named to the 2023 Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference Preseason Football All-Conference team, while Coach Buddy Pough’s team was picked to finish third (3rd) in the race for the league title.
Nick Taiste -OL, Patrick Godbolt -DL, Aaron Smith-LB, Dyson Roberts-P/K, Khalil Ellis-TE, Cam Johnson-OL, Jared Kirksey-DL, and Octaveon Minter.

South Carolina State returns to action on Saturday (Sept. 2nd) on the road versus Charlotte in a non-conference matchup at Jerry Richardson Stadium. Kickoff is 6 p.m. and will be televised on ESPN+

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