UC celebrates Homecoming, GameDay and return to campus

Homecoming weekend Nov. 5-6 will commemorate traditions

The University of Cincinnati’s annual Homecoming activities will take place on the Uptown Campus on Friday and Saturday, Nov. 5-6. This year’s festivities mark a full return to an in-person celebration after the events of 2020 prevented last fall’s traditional widespread gathering of Bearcats on campus. UC also welcomes ESPN's College GameDay to campus.

All the historic pageantry of Homecoming will be on display, highlighted by the Homecoming Kickoff Party on Friday evening, followed by Saturday’s Homecoming parade and the game between the No. 2-ranked Bearcats and visiting Tulsa in Nippert Stadium. Kickoff time is 3:30 p.m. The game is sold out.

As always, the parade will be a Homecoming focal point, traveling down Clifton Avenue beginning at noon, immediately following College GameDay. This year’s edition will feature 70 parade entries with generations of onlookers and well-wishers from the UC family lining the route. The parade will highlight the 2021 Homecoming theme “Thy Loyal Children,” a call-back from the UC Alma Mater. UC alumnus Jeff Wyler, Bus ’65, Hon ’11, the UC Alumni Association’s 2020-21 William Howard Taft Medal for Notable Achievement honoree, will serve as the Homecoming Parade’s grand marshal.

While the UC–Tulsa football game and parade are the cornerstones of Homecoming, a full slate of activities will provide students, alumni and college groups and friends with many opportunities to enjoy the occasion.

On Friday night, Nov. 5, the University of Cincinnati Alumni Association will host its annual Homecoming Kickoff Party from 6 to 9 p.m. This year’s event will take place at Campus Green. Voice of the Bearcats Dan Hoard will emcee with special guests Bearcats Head Coach Luke Fickell and Director of Athletics John Cunningham, as well as Chief Alumni Officer Jennifer Heisey will take the stage to greet the Kickoff Party guests. Live music will be provided by The Touchables with special appearances from the Bearcat mascot and UC cheerleaders.

On Saturday, Nov. 6, pregame festivities will occur all around campus and the surrounding neighborhood, including notably at The Grid tailgate area on Campus Green. The football team’s traditional Catwalk to the stadium will pass through The Grid approximately two and a half hours before kickoff. The game will be nationally televised on ESPN2. UC fans are asked to wear red.

Our alumni are ‘thy loyal children’ that our beautiful Alma Mater refers to, and that treasured relationship is never more evident than during Homecoming Weekend.

Jennifer Heisey, A&S '97 Chief Alumni Officer

"It’s a cherished tradition for the UC family to come together at Homecoming, and we are very excited to host the 2021 edition and welcome Bearcats back to campus,” said Heisey. “Our alumni are ‘thy loyal children’ that our beautiful Alma Mater refers to, and that treasured relationship is never more evident than during Homecoming Weekend.”

Homecoming Main Events

A full list of more than 20 events, headlined by the Kickoff Party, Homecoming Parade and tailgating on The Grid, is available at alumni.uc.edu/homecoming. The schedule includes a variety of activities staged by the alumni association, alumni networks, student groups and UC Athletics.

Friday, Nov. 5
Homecoming Kickoff Party
6-9 p.m., Campus Green

Saturday, Nov. 6
Homecoming Parade
Noon, immediately following ESPN College GameDay. Parade travels down Clifton Ave. from Calhoun St. to Martin Luther King Drive

Football Team’s Catwalk
Approximately 1 p.m., starting in Campus Green and traveling through The Grid

UC–Tulsa Homecoming Game
3:30 p.m., Nippert Stadium

Presentation of Homecoming Court
Halftime, Nippert Stadium
UC Homecoming 2021 is presented in cooperation with premier sponsors GEICO, College Advantage and Skyline Chili.

UC Alumni Association in-person activities will be provided under CDC guidelines and local COVID-19 restrictions, with the well-being of the UC community remaining the top priority. Each experience will follow the venue’s established restrictions and guidelines, and participants are asked to follow posted recommendations.

Headshot of Cynthia Miller

Cynthia Miller

Senior Director of Alumni & Donor Experience, Constituent Engagement