Tennessee has booked its 2015 season opener at a neutral, in-state venue, scheduling a game against UAB at LP Field in Nashville, home of the NFL's Tennessee Titans.
According to a statement from the university:
The Nashville Sports Council and the University of Tennessee announced today that the Tennessee Volunteers will open their 2015 football season at LP Field in Nashville. The Volunteers will take on the UAB Blazers on Saturday, Sept. 5, 2015. Kickoff time will be determined at a later date.
"Scott Ramsey and I have been in conversation about opening our 2015 season in Nashville for more than a year," said Tennessee vice chancellor and director of athletics Dave Hart. "It is exciting to have this come to fruition, and we look forward to opening our season in front of a great crowd in Nashville."
Per the release, this won't be the first time Tennessee opens a season at LP Field, having done so against Wyoming in 2002. The Vols handled the Cowboys with ease, 47-7, during that one, though 2002's team also started the year ranked No. 5 in the AP Poll.
Next year's team will not.
More recently, Tennessee played at LP Field during the 2010 Franklin American Mortgage Music City Bowl, where it lost to North Carolina, 30-27. Tar Heels kicker Casey Barth kicked the game-tying field goal as time expired in regulation and the game-winning field-goal in double overtime.
According to the release, this announcement means Tennessee will likely have to suspend its home-and-home series with Connecticut, which was scheduled for 2015 and 2016.
Hart said, "We [Tennessee and UConn] have a mutual agreement to suspend that series in order to provide us the opportunity to play in Nashville in 2015 and in Bristol in 2016."
The Bristol game Hart refers to is the "Battle at Bristol," which will take place at Bristol Motor Speedway, a NASCAR track, against Virginia Tech in September 2016.
Though two-and-a-half years from fruition, the game already has its own hype video:
Tennessee will still play seven home games at Neyland Stadium in 2015, the first of which will be against Oklahoma on Sept. 12.
As for 2014, Tennessee will open the year with home games against Utah State and Arkansas State, two formidable teams from lesser conferences.
It will then head to Norman, Okla., for the first part of that series with the Sooners.
Follow Brian Leigh on Twitter: @BLeighDAT
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