Dec. 22, 2012
HATTIESBURG, Miss. -
As part of its 100 Years of Championships and Commencements celebration, Southern Miss will hold several events around its 5 p.m., men's basketball game versus Conference USA foe, UAB.
In conjunction with the Southern Miss Activities Council (SMAC), Pride Field will play host to a free pregame concert featuring Grammy-nominated country brand, Emerson Drive, which will run from 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m., prior to the game and will be open to Southern Miss students as well as the general public.
"I am very pleased that our student leaders of the Southern Miss Activities Council are partnering with athletics to create special draw for the January 19th basketball game," said Southern Miss Vice President of Student Affairs Joe Paul. "The concert will be an extra attraction and will fire up a record number of students to create an energized arena for this important conference match-up."
Emerson Drive has been a part of the country music scene since their signed their first record deal with DreamWorks Records Nashville in 2001. The band's first two singles, "I Should Be Sleeping" and "Fall Into Me" peaked in the Top 5 on the Billboard charts and quickly became fan favorites but it was the career-changing song "Moments" that gave the band its first No. 1 single in the United States.
The band has been honored with awards and/or nominations from the Academy of Country Music, Country Music Association, Canadian Country Music Association, CMT, Dove Awards, Grammy Awards, Inspirational Country Music Association, Juno Awards, Music Row Magazine and Campus Activities Magazine.
The stop is part of their Decade & Driving Tour which celebrates the 10 years of great music.
"This tour is a celebration," said lead vocalist Brad Mates. "We have spent 10 years out on the road sharing our music with country fans across North America. We can't wait to take the party back out on the road."
Along with the concert, the athletics department is sponsoring "A Taste of the Burg" featuring free food from several vendors around the Hattiesburg area.
In addition, the athletics department will recognize its 1987 National Invitational Tournament championship team that day. From 11:30 a.m. until 1 p.m., the former players, coaches and staff from that team will hold a social at Mugshots (204 N. 40th Ave.). The Voice of the Golden Eagles John Cox will emcee the event and allow fans an opportunity to reminisce with those individuals involved during that special season as well as enjoy some fine food at Mugshots.
"We are grateful to the Southern Miss Activities Council for partnering with USM Athletics for what will truly be a wonderful event," said Southern Miss Director of Athletics Jeff Hammond. "The band, Emerson Drive, is a big part of the national and world-wide country music scene and we are honored to have such a renowned and accomplished group of musicians performing on Pride Field. I encourage all our fans and friends throughout South Mississippi to attend this "free" concert and support Golden Eagle Basketball as we celebrate our 1987 NIT Championship Team."
Later in the day, the first 1,987 fans will receive a free mini poster recognizing that championship team and that squad will also be recognized at halftime.
Please note that there will be no tents allowed at Pride Field and alcohol will not be permitted. Fans are encouraged to bring lawn chairs and blankets to enjoy the concert.
Event Schedule for Jan. 19
11:30 a.m. - 1 p.m. --- NIT Championship Social at Mugshots (204 N. 40th Ave.)
3:00 - 4:30 p.m. --- Free Concert by Emerson Drive at Pride Field
5 p.m. --- Southern Miss vs. UAB at Reed Green