American Actor Michael Jordan to Host HBCU Basketball Event
Michael B. Jordan is launching an HBCU basketball event called Hoop Dreams Classic. The actor and producer is hosting the one-day showcase on Dec. 18, 2021, akin to Allstar basketball or annually held college football bowl event, in his hometown of Newark, New Jersey, US Weekly reports. The event is in support of Black students who play basketball.
Hoop Dreams Classic is about celebrating and representing HBCU (Historically Black Colleges and Universities) culture in the Brick City through the game of basketball.
“This past year has been the tipping point for so many, including myself, in revving up support for Black people,” said Jordan. “As a Newark native, I am committed to bringing change to the community and am honoured to be able to present The Hoop Dreams Classic as a way to celebrate the value of community, education, and Black college experiences. Through our shared love of basketball, I look forward to bringing the communal spirit of HBCUs to the city that helped shape me into the man I am today.”
Four of the top Division I HBCU Men’s and Women’s basketball programs will demonstrate their talents in a doubleheader basketball showcase. The event will also feature a Battle of the Bands, culinary events, live musical performances, film festivals, college and career opportunities and an overall immersive HBCU experience.
“After seeing first-hand, the lack of resources and information available to basketball players, I was determined to make Hoop Dreams the vehicle that could provide the tools these kids need to be successful in life beyond the game,” Hoop Dreams CEO Jessica Estrada said. “Michael and I share similar foundations and visions for our communities which is why I am thrilled to partner with him.”
Some of the proceeds from the event will fund HBCUs and the local Newark community, where Black people are the majority — representing about 50%, Home facts reported.
A marketing team called 160over90, stylized 160/90, is tasked with designing the promotion. The company’s prior work consists of handling the social media presence for the AMC series The Walking Dead, Chrissy Teigen’s #CRAVINGSFEST, and several eSports events hosted by game publisher EA
“We are proud to stand alongside our partners Michael B. Jordan, WME Sports and Scout/Horizon Media to create and host an event at the Prudential Centre that shines a spotlight on HBCU basketball programs. In hosting the ‘Hoop Dreams Classic,’ we continue our tradition and mission to support and promote meaningful, live events at intersection of sports, entertainment and culture in our venues, alongside our storied brands, and for the benefit of the communities where our teams live, work and play,” said Scott O’Neil, CEO of Harris Blitzer Sports & Entertainment.
“This endeavour is more than just competitive sports, it’s a platform to appreciate and champion black excellence” Scout Vice President Sean Singletary said. “Fostering an authentic inclusive environment is a priority for our organization and in order to do so, we must commit to recognizing and embracing those cultural moments that make us all unique.”