According to Cindy Ball, executive director of information and community relations of Rockdale County public schools, the previously reported agreement between Salem and the Wildcats has not yet been finalized despite the press release stating that an agreement was finalized.
Salem High School principal Tonya Bloodworth informed the Atlanta Wildcats that she was cancelling the “Back to School Jamboree” shortly after the announcement was released to the press on August 12, according to a press release.
According to the release, the event’s cancellation was influenced by the Rockdale County public school superintendent, Richard Autry, being unaware of the agreement details that were discussed between the Wildcats and Salem’s athletic department.
The Wildcats’ administrator sent a letter to Autry requesting a review of the agreement, which would hopefully allow the back to school event to go on for Saturday. As of now, there hasn’t been a response.
According to the release, the team now has to secure another venue for Saturday and possibly the season.
“In the next few months, we have to build a fan base, promote awareness of our presence in the community, and schedule our season games with other ABA teams across the nation,” William Payton, Wildcats’ owner, said in the release. “…We were given approval to hold the Back-To-School Jamboree this Saturday. If we did not feel secure about what was verbally discussed, the press release would not have been sent.”
The “Back to School Jamboree” was being offered free to spectators in a promotional effort to introduce the community to the Wildcats’ team and inform them how their attendance would benefit the students and help raise money for Salem.