Mike Guswiler; (616) 608-1840;




3rd Annual Event Brings Statewide Participation at GVSU Lubbers Field;

Media Credentials Required


GRAND RAPIDS, Mich., April 17, 2017 – While the high school football season is on a break until the fall, anticipating fans will once again look forward to cheering on their favorite school on a larger stage as eight Michigan high schools look forward to opening their seasons in the third annual GRidiron Classic, Saturday, Aug. 26 at Grand Valley State University’s Lubbers Stadium.

Produced by the West Michigan Sports Commission (WMSC) in partnership with the OK Conference, the GRidiron Classic has doubled in size from 2015, featuring more schools from a wider region, including L’Anse Cruese from the Macomb County area and Farmington Hills North, in addition to several local favorites.  Again, this year through support from the West Michigan Officials Association, we will bring the level of officiating up to seven-man crews much like the MHSAA High School playoff games.

“This is a fantastic opportunity for high school football players to compete on a bigger stage at a first-class collegiate stadium in front of their fans,” said Mike Guswiler, President of the WMSC. “And for fans, it’s an exciting event to show school pride and watch their team play in a week one kick-off to the season in a first-class environment. Plus, you’ll see great talent who will be destined as top recruits for major collegiate teams as we’ve witnessed in past years.” added Guswiler.

Following is the schedule for the 3rd Annual GRidiron Classic:

Saturday, Aug. 26: Lubbers Stadium - Grand Valley State University (Allendale)
Game 1: 10:30 a.m. – NorthPointe Christian Mustangs v. Spring Lake Lakers
Game 2: 1:30 p.m.   – East Kentwood Falcons v. L’Anse Cruese Crusaders
Game 3: 4:30 p.m.   – Kent City Eagles v. Ravenna Bulldogs
Game 4: 7:30 p.m.   – Greenville Yellow Jackets v. North Farmington Raiders

“High school athletics are key to our mission of promoting sports in West Michigan, and we want to make the first week of high school football a special occasion,” added Guswiler. “What better way to do that than partner with first-class higher education facilities in a football kickoff showcase to build on the excitement of the season?”

Ticket Information

Ticket prices are $10 for adults, $8 for students, and free for children 10 and under.  One ticket entitles the bearer to attend all games (no re-entry permitted).  High school football players wearing their school jerseys get in for $4. Discounted advance tickets are available at participating high-school athletic offices.  All seating is general admission.

Media Credential and Coverage Information

Only pre-approved news organizations (print, online and broadcast media) will be permitted access to the event; media, video or film crews requesting access to the games must receive written consent from the West Michigan Sports Commission prior to check-in. Media may contact Angie Cena with the WMSC to request credentials: 616-608-1842 or Other information is as follows:

Parking - In order to be granted access to media parking, you must show the parking attendant your media (company) ID badge or driver’s license and be on an approved media list., complimentary media parking is in Lot A at Lubbers Stadium near the main gate, only granted with proper identification.

Media Credential Pick Up/Identification – Credentials can be picked up at WILL CALL and will be released with a valid photo ID. They must be worn and remain visible at all times while on the premises. The Broadcast booth will be limited to media partner ESPN 96.1FM and other approved local broadcast organizations.

Coverage Guidelines - Player safety is our main priority. All media including on-field and access TV crews and photographers should stay on the sideline and outside of the player bench area.

Social Media Engagement – While photos taken at this event remain the property of the photographer, we would appreciate it if you would share your images with the WMSC to use on social media and in future event promotion. Photo credits will be provided on all images used. For photos and article releases, please notify the Event Manager, so that we may share via social media.

Twitter - @wmsckickoff
Instagram - @wmsckickoff          
Hashtag - #GRidironClassic

The WMSC appreciates your cooperation in abiding by these protocols.


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About the West Michigan Sports Commission

The West Michigan Sports Commission, a non-profit 501 (c) (3), works to identify, secure and host a diverse level of youth and amateur sporting events to positively impact the economy and quality of life in the region. Since its inception in 2007, the WMSC has hosted 570 sporting events and tournaments that attracted 830,000 athletes and visitors, generating $240 million in direct visitor spending. For more information, visit

About the GRidiron Classic

Produced by the West Michigan Sports Commission in partnership with Grand Valley State University and the OK Conference, the GRidiron Classic is an annual event pairing selected matchups to kick off the high school football season. Hosted by GVSU’s Lubbers Stadium, considered one of the top Division II football facilities in the nation, the event is modeled after the Detroit Sports Commission’s Prep Kickoff Classic at Wayne State University, now in its 13th year. For more information, visit


Media Contacts

West Michigan Sports Commission:

Katy Tigchelaar

Kim Skeltis, Blue Blaze PR

Meijer State Games of Michigan:

Eric Engelbarts, II

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