Eckrich, the maker of naturally hardwood smoked sausage and deli meats, announces its continued partnership as the Official Smoked Sausage and Deli Meat Sponsor of the College Football Playoff (CFP). To kick off the 2021 season, Eckrich is launching a multifaceted campaign, including a social contest—College Football Playoff National Tailgate Champion presented by Eckrich—where one lucky fan could win a trip to the 2022 CFP National Championship. The brand is also partnering with the CFP Foundation and its Extra Yard for Teachers initiative to host challenges at key games throughout the season for educators to win $1 million to fund education projects.

Whether you're grilling smoked sausages at your tailgate or making a decadent deli meat sandwich while watching the game at home, Eckrich is a must-have menu item for an all-around delicious meal. That's why the brand is launching a social contest – the College Football Playoff National Tailgate Champion presented by Eckrich – to crown the first-ever master of pre-game grilling who will win a trip to the national championship game on January 10, 2022, at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis. Starting on August 23, fans can enter the contest by posting photos or videos of their tailgating or homegating masterpiece to social media using the hashtag #EckrichTailgate and tagging @EckrichMeats. The contest will run throughout the college football season and will conclude on December 13, 2021. Fans can visit to learn more.

In addition, for the third consecutive year, Eckrich is partnering with the CFP Foundation's Extra Yard for Teachers program to celebrate teachers across the country for their honest work and tireless commitment to ensure that their students have the tools to succeed. Fans can visit to nominate their favorite educators to participate in the $1 Million Challenge, where selected teachers will attempt to make a 15-yard throw for their chance to win a $1 million donation to support either their school district or various projects. And, to up the ante, Kirk Herbstreit, Emmy Award-winning ESPN/ABC college football analyst, and Marty Smith, multifaceted sports journalist for ESPN, will attempt throws at the 2022 national championship game toward a potential donation of another $1 million to Extra Yard for Teachers.

"The partnership between Eckrich and the College Football Playoff is one that we look forward to year after year," says Rikki Ingram, director of marketing at Smithfield Foods. "Not only do we have the opportunity to support a great cause with the $1 Million Challenge in support of Extra Yard for Teachers, but through our partnership with the CFP, we also get to interact with college football enthusiasts all season long and inspire them with delicious recipes that they can share with their friends and family at their next tailgate. We're really looking forward to crowning the first-ever 'National Tailgate Champion' at the national championship game in Indianapolis early next year."

"I'm excited to be partnering with Eckrich for another year to support the $1 Million Challenge and, in turn, Extra Yard for Teachers," said Herbstreit. "Being able to personally participate at the end of the season and to try to add to that big donation is a great experience as it assists the amazing educators in this country who dedicate endless resources into setting the next generation up for success. It's so nice to be a part of a program that gives back in the magnitude that this one does."

For more information about the College Football Playoff National Tailgate Champion presented by Eckrich, and to see a list of games where Eckrich will be participating, visit

About Eckrich
Founded by Peter Eckrich in 1894, Eckrich has a rich heritage starting from a small meat market in Fort Wayne, Indiana, to one of the most recognized regional premium deli and meat brands on the market today. Through it all, Eckrich meats have been recognized for their great taste and supreme quality, craftsmanship, care, and pride. Eckrich is a brand of Smithfield Foods.

About Smithfield Foods
Headquartered in Smithfield, Va. since 1936, Smithfield Foods, Inc. is an American food company with agricultural roots and a global reach. Our 63,000 team members are dedicated to producing "Good food. Responsibly.®" and have made us one of the world's leading vertically integrated protein companies. We have pioneered sustainability standards for more than two decades, including our industry-leading commitments to become carbon negative in U.S. company-owned operations and reduce GHG emissions 30 percent across our entire U.S. value chain by 2030. We believe in the power of protein to end food insecurity and have donated hundreds of millions of food servings to our communities. Smithfield boasts a portfolio of high-quality iconic brands, such as Smithfield, Eckrich and Nathan's Famous®, among many others. 

About College Football Playoff
The College Football Playoff matches the No. 1 ranked team vs. No. 4, and No. 2 vs. No. 3 in semifinal games that rotate annually among six bowl games – the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic, PlayStation Fiesta Bowl, Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl, Capital One Orange Bowl, Allstate Sugar Bowl and Rose Bowl Game. This season's Playoff Semifinals will take place Friday, December 31, 2021, at the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic and the Capital One Orange Bowl. The College Football Playoff National Championship will be Monday, January 10, 2022, at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, Indiana.

About the College Football Playoff Foundation and Extra Yard for Teachers  
The CFP Foundation is the community engagement arm of the College Football Playoff, supporting education across the country. The CFP Foundation's primary cause platform, Extra Yard for Teachers, is dedicated to elevating the teaching profession by inspiring and empowering teachers in four focus areas: resources, recognition, recruitment and professional development. The CFP Foundation utilizes multiple partnerships to execute its initiatives and support positive educational outcomes. To learn more, visit and follow Extra Yard for Teachers (@CFPExtraYard) on social media.