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UNC set to host “HBCU Celebration Game” against Florida A&M in Week Zero

If you haven’t bought tickets yet, get on that!

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: SEP 05 Orange Blossom Classic - Jackson State vs. Florida A&M Photo by Nick Tre. Smith/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

UNC football got a jump start on summer practice, as they are one of 16 teams that play their first game on Saturday, August 27, also known as “Week Zero.” The rest of the college football universe begins “Week One” on September 3.

In honor of Florida A&M’s visit to Chapel Hill, Carolina will turn the Rattlers’ trip into a “HBCU Celebration Game” with events scheduled throughout the day. Most notable for college football fans that love the pageantry of game day? A visit from FAMU’s “Marching 100.”

For the uninitiated, HBCU marching bands are a little different from most of the bands in P5 conferences. Here’s a taste:

The day’s schedule is still being finalized, but UNC has already announced that the Marching 100 and the Marching Tar Heels will both play pregame and halftime shows, and will have a joint pregame performance. Band enthusiasts will be treated to a feast for the ears and eyes.

Before we talk about football, let’s check out one more video of the Marching 100...

Florida A&M’s football team is no walkover. Playing FCS Division I football in the MEAC, they finished last season with a 9-3 record. They lost a tight season opener to Deion Sanders’ Jackson State 6-7, and then a heavier loss at USF in week 3, before running the table for the rest of the regular season. The lost 14-38 to Southeastern Louisiana in the first round of the 2021 FCS Playoffs to close their season.

Carolina’s offensive line will need to be on high alert for Rattler defensive edge Isaiah Land. Last season, Land led college football in sacks (19) and tackles for loss (25.5) en route to winning the Buck Buchanan Award as top defensive player in FCS. Land was named as one of the Athletic’s “Freak List,” the only HBCU player to make the cut. Jacolby Criswell and/or Drake Maye will not want to feel Land crash into their backs.

Tickets are still available for the game, so if you haven’t picked up tickets yet, scoop them up now!