The Carolina Panthers will host the inaugural Keep Pounding High School Classic, a season-opening regional matchup between state powers Rock Hill Northwestern and Charlotte Providence Day School on Saturday, Aug. 19 at 7 p.m. at Bank of America Stadium.
Coaches and players from both schools were on hand at Bank of America Stadium on Monday for a formal announcement of the game.
“This game is really meaningful to me as the coach of the Panthers in this stadium,” Panthers head coach Frank Reich said at Monday’s event.
“For many years, my father was a high school football coach.
I grew up going to high school football training camps and games as a child.
These are some of my favorite memories.
If you ask any of our players, they will tell you how high school football influenced their lives.”
— Carolina Panthers (@Panthers) March 6, 2023
Trojans head coach Page Wofford spoke on behalf of Northwestern High School and the Rock Hill community about the unique opportunity this presents for his players and community.
“We’re so grateful to the Panthers for allowing us to be a part of this incredible opportunity,” Wofford said.
“All of our outstanding alumni, including NFL draft picks, have helped us get to where we are today.
I’m grateful that football allows our children to perform on this stage, but we also recognize that our role is to use football to help these young people grow into better people and adults.”
Northwestern enters 2023 after a 14-2 season and appearance in the SCHSL Class AAAA state championship game.
Chad Grier, the head coach of Providence Day, has a special connection to the Panthers, having coached 2022 first-round pick Ikem Ekwonu at Providence Day from 2014 to 2018.
Grier’s father is former Carolina Panthers quarterback Will Grier.
“This stadium and this team have always meant a lot to me and my family,” Grier said.
“We had PSL tickets from the beginning and made many memories in this stadium.
It will be very special to give another generation of children the opportunity to make special memories here.”
Providence Day went 12-1 last season and won its second straight NCISAA state championship.
“Supporting youth and high school football is a pillar of the Carolina Panthers community endeavors,” said Riley Fields, the Carolina Panthers’ director of community relations.
“The Keep Pounding High School Classic will be an opportunity to recognize high school football and the important role it plays in communities throughout our region.
I’d like to thank David and Nicole Tepper for their enthusiastic support of this game, as well as their contributions to the Panthers organization’s efforts to serve youth and high school football in the two-state region.
I also want to thank Panthers team president Kristi Coleman for her unwavering support.”
Tickets for the game will go on sale this summer for $5, making them accessible to high school football fans and the general public.
More information about the on-sale of tickets will be provided later.