Tennessee on Monday announced a 2023 non-conference opponent from the ACC that the Vols will play in Nissan Stadium.

Tennessee will meet Virginia to open the 2023 college football season on Saturday, Sept. 2, the programs and the Nashville Sports Council announced. Tennessee was originally scheduled to begin the season against BYU in Provo, Utah, but this contest played in-state versus Virginia replaces that game.

The Vols last played in Nissan Stadium in December in the Music City Bowl against Purdue, and previously opened the season there when the Vols beat Bowling Green, 59-30, on Sept. 5, 2015, and topped Wyoming, 47-7, on Aug. 31, 2002.

This game will be the first meeting between the two teams since the 1991 Sugar Bowl when Tony Thompson plunged in from 1-yard out with 0:31 remaining to give Tennessee a 23-22 come-from-behind victory in New Orleans. The Vols lead the all-time series, 3-1. The other meetings occurred in Knoxville during regular seasons of 1927, 1940 and 1980.

“Pivoting to play a marquee non-conference opponent in Nashville made sense for multiple reasons,” Tennessee Vice Chancellor/Director of Athletics Danny White said in the announcement. “This is a more accessible game for our fanbase. I expect that we will have a much larger contingent of fans in Nashville than would have been able to travel to Utah. Our fans also have heard me talk about the importance of finding new revenue to grow our operating budget, and playing Virginia at Nissan Stadium is an opportunity for a net-positive revenue game.”

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