College football will see the ultimate hype this spring as Kelly Clarkson, ZZ Top, Maroon 5, Dwight Yoakam, Counting Crows, Taylor Swift and Montgomery Gentry, to name a few, perform simultaneously in
College football will see the ultimate hype this spring as Kelly Clarkson, ZZ Top, Maroon 5, Dwight Yoakam, Counting Crows, Taylor Swift and Montgomery Gentry, to name a few, perform simultaneously in college stadiums nationwide as part of the inaugural Gridiron Bash on April 18.
The event, billed as "the largest single-day sports and entertainment event to take place on college campuses," according to New York-based producer MSL Sports and Entertainment, will visit about 20 universities. Participating schools include Texas A&M, Kansas State University, University of Tennessee, Rutgers, University of Colorado, West Point (Army), West Virginia University and Penn State.
In addition to concert performances, to be held on mobile stages inside the stadiums, the events will begin with a pep rally, the introduction of the school's team roster, a chat with coaches and an autograph session with past football legend graduates. Gridiron Bash will be open to the public at a flat ticket price of $35, according to MSL Sports and Entertainment president Shawn Garrity.
"It's a natural way to bring in the music and bring in the fan," Garrity tells Billboard.com. "Up and down across the board, we're thinking we'll get between 40,000 and 50,000 people per crowd."
Additional artists and universities will be announced within the coming weeks. Organizers are currently in discussion with such acts as Good Charlotte, O.A.R. and Fall Out Boy, among others. Artists are aligned with universities based on their ties to that given area, Garrity says.
In the spirit of college sports, organizers have added an element of competition to Gridiron Bash, which gives students and fans the opportunity to win funds for their school. Combining attendance with the number of text/call-in votes from fans, a winning school will be awarded $1 million for its general scholarship fund. Second and third place will receive $500,000 and $250,000, respectively.
"We don't want it where somebody has a bigger stadium, so they automatically win," Garrity says. "We want the fans to compete." The winners will be announced on national television in the days following the event.
Although details are limited at this point, Garrity says MSL Sports and Entertainment and its partners are working on opportunities to exploit the event through online streaming, downloads, wireless and ringtones.
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