There will be a halftime ceremony featuring four members of the 1963 Mississippi State team: Doug Hutton, Larry Lee, Aubrey Nichols and Jackie Wofford.
There will also be promotional giveaways, including a commemorative poster for the first 2,000 fans. MSU will wear special warm-up shirts to honor the 1963 team. Tip-off is slated for 3 p.m. at Humphrey Coliseum. The game will be on ESPN2.
What is the Game of Change?
In a release, MSU referred to the Game of Change as “a seminal moment in the history of collegiate sports.” In the second round of the 1963 NCAA Tournament, Mississippi State was matched up against Loyola Chicago − an integrated team.
During a time of heavy racial tension, particularly in Mississippi, state officials objected to former MSU president Dean W. Colvard and basketball coach Babe McCarthy sending their team to play against a team with four Black starters. Behind a plan including decoy players, MSU got onto a charter flight the day before the game and flew to Michigan for the contest.
Loyola won 61-51, but perhaps the most powerful moment came before the game when cameras captured captains Jerry Harkness, a Black Loyola player, and Joe Dan Gold, a white Mississippi State player, shaking hands. Loyola went on to win the national title that season.
Two years later, Richard Holmes became the first Black student to enroll at Mississippi State, officially integrating the school.