CIAA Proclaims Renewed Multi-Yr Partnership with Academy Sports activities + Outside


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CHARLOTTE, NC (October 6, 2022) – The Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA), the nation’s oldest historically black sports conference, announced the renewal of its multi-year partnership agreement with Academy Sports + Outdoors (“Academy”) to remain the conference’s Official Sporting Goods and Outdoor Retailer.

The expanded partnership between the CIAA and the Academy is focused on advancing HBCUs and supporting CIAA students, faculty, student athletes and bands. The Academy will continue to stock licensed merchandise from select member schools online and in local stores.

“We are excited about the Academy’s continued partnership to create fun experiences and new opportunities for our member institutions,” said CIAA Commissioner Jacqie McWilliams. “Academy continues to be an advocate for our conference and our fans. Together we will continue to celebrate the legacy of HBCUs and serve our communities.”

The Academy celebrates the CIAA and HBCU homecoming experience by hosting in-store celebrations for customers. In addition, through November 5, 2022, the Academy is offering current CIAA students, faculty and staff a 10% discount on purchases with a valid school ID card in stores and online at

“Academy is excited to continue its partnership with CIAA to create impactful experiences that enhance the HBCU experience,” said Lawrence Lobpries, Academy’s senior vice president of marketing. “CIAA fans are passionate about fun, and we look forward to attracting those fans through inclusive, community-focused efforts to celebrate the history of CIAA’s member institutions.”

Customers can purchase select CIAA and HBCU merchandise in-store, online at, or through the Academy mobile app. For the latest information and offers on CIAA equipment, text HBCU to 22369.

About Academy Sports + Outdoors

Academy is a leading full-line athletic and outdoor recreation retailer in the United States. Originally founded as a family business in Texas in 1938, Academy has grown to 265 stores in 17 states. Academy’s mission is to provide “Fun for All,” and Academy delivers on that mission with a localized merchandising strategy and value proposition that creates a strong connection with a broad spectrum of consumers. Academy’s product range focuses on key categories in the outdoor, apparel, sport & leisure and footwear sectors, both through leading national brands and through a portfolio of private labels. Visit for more information.

About the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association

Founded in 1912, the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA) is the first and longest-running African-American athletic conference in the United States and one of the most recognized Division II conferences. The CIAA conducts 14 championships, attended by more than 150,000 fans from across the country. In 2020, the conference celebrated the special 75th anniversary of its championship basketball tournament – an event that has become a must-attend event in the African American community. The basketball tournament was named Champion of Economic Impact in Sports Tourism for both 2018 and 2019 by Sports Destination Management, the leading publication with the widest circulation of sports event planners and tournament directors in the sports tourism market. North Carolina, the CIAA is governed by the Presidents and Chancellors of its 12 member institutions: Bowie State University, Claflin University, Elizabeth City State University, Fayetteville State University, Johnson C. Smith University, Lincoln University of Pennsylvania, Livingstone College, Saint Augustine’s University, Shaw University, Virginia State University, Virginia Union University and Winston-Salem State University. Chowan University is an associate member of women’s football and bowling.

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Academy Sports + Outdoors Media Contact: Margot Ledet, Sr. Public Relations Specialist, [email protected]
CIAA Media Contact: Ja’Shawn Steward-Johnson, Associate Director, Strategic Communications, [email protected]