Derek Horne, FAMU Director of Athletics, welcomes the opportunity to play the Buckeyes in Ohio Stadium. "Florida A&M is one of the storied programs in NCAA football history, and to have the opportunity to face a team that has a championship history, as does Ohio State, will be a plus for our program," Horne Said.
The venue will be the largest the Rattlers have ever played in. In 2003, the Rattlers played to 90,000 in Ben Hill Griffin Stadium against the University of Florida Gators. Ohio Stadium's 102,000 seat stadium, which consistently sells out, will be a new experience for the Rattlers.
The Rattlers and Buckeyes have been connected in several ways over the years. Legendary FAMU head football coach A.S. "Jake" Gaither had one of the most successful football coaches camps in the nation. Ohio State Hall of Fame coach Woody Hayes was one of the coaches that Gaither discussed the intricacies of his offensive and defensive strategies with.
In addition, FAMU Hall of Fame coach Rudy Hubbard was a running back for the Buckeyes. He played under Hayes and learned about coaching under him. Ohio State was one of the universities that several black southern students would attend to get their graduate degrees. Costa "Pop" Kittles, a legendary head baseball coach and quarterbacks coach for Gaither, was one of those individuals. Kittles received his bachelor's degree from FAMU and his master's degree from Ohio State.
Horne and Ohio State athletic director Gene Smith crafted the agreement for the 2013 season. The game will guaranty the Rattlers $850,000 for the visit.