“I need to make the HBCU movement real so that others will follow,” five-star basketball recruit, Makur Maker wrote on Twitter after announcing his commitment to Howard University over UCLA and other elite schools. Maker is the highest-ranked prospect to commit to an HBCU since 2007 and to further the support and opportunities of HBCUs and student athletes, Michael B. Jordan is launching Hoop Dreams Classic.
Taking place in Newark, N.J on December 18, 2021, Hoop Dreams Classic, will be a college basketball showcase will features four of the Division 1 HBCU men’s and women’s basketball programs. “This past year has been the tipping point for so many, including myself, in revving up support for Black people,” Jordan said in a statement. “As a Newark native, I am committed to bringing change to the community and am honored 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.”
In partnership with WME Sports, Harris Blitzer Sports & Entertainment, and Scout Sports and Entertainment/Horizon Media: The showcase will include an immersive cultural experience shining light on the life and culture at HBCU – Battle of the Bands, film festivals, culinary events and job fairs are all on the list. Some of the proceeds will be donated to organization who advance HBCUs and the local Newark community.
Jordan Bazant of WME Sports said:
“Michael challenged us and encouraged us to make the same impact we are with #ChallengeHollywood, and it fits perfectly with what and who we are. What about sports? What about music?…Talking to other partners, they were doing their own things and challenging themselves, so we said, why don’t we come together like we have in the past to make a bigger impact? It’s the next step and next generation for #ChangeHollywood.”
Hoop Dreams CEO Jessica Estrada added the following in a release:
“After seeing firsthand 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. Michael and I share similar foundations and visions for our communities which is why I am thrilled to partner with him.”
Photo via Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images