Sunday, December 5, 2010

Carolina draws intriguing bowl match-up with Tennessee

North Carolina ended up with an attractive bowl option Sunday when it accepted an invitation to play in the Music City Bowl on Dec. 30, in Nashville, Tenn., against the University of Tennessee. The game, at 6:30 p.m. on ESPN, marks the first the Tar Heels have faced the Volunteers since 1961.

Obviously, the Tar Heels drew a tough assignment playing Tennessee in the Volunteers home state, but it sure beats being banished to a lower bowl with little interest. Nashville is reachable for most fans, a cool place to visit, and there will be some energy in the stadium. And to be honest, this is hardly an unbeatable Vols team.

“Our fans have been tremendous this year, setting a school record for average attendance (58,250)," UNC athletics director Dick Baddour said in a statement. "This bowl game is another fantastic opportunity to support this Tar Heel team and recognize the accomplishments of an outstanding senior class.”

Head coach Butch Davis said, “I congratulate our team, and especially the 17 seniors, for the extraordinary job they’ve done in leading our program to a third consecutive bowl appearance. Regardless of the situation, this team fought week after week to make our fans proud. We look forward to representing North Carolina against a talented Tennessee team.”

Carolina (7-5, 4-4 ACC) is in a bowl game for the third straight season, the school’s longest streak since going to seven straight bowl games from 1992-98. The Music City Bowl is Carolina’s 28th all-time postseason bowl game, but first in Nashville, which is hosting its 13th bowl game.

Carolina and Tennessee will be meeting for the 32nd time, and first since a 22-21 UNC win in 1961. The Volunteers lead the overall series, 20-10-1. Tennessee (6-6, 3-5 SEC) won just two of its first eight games this year, but rallied to win four straight and qualify for postseason play.

1 comment:

  1. Go heels, Too bad it's a lesser bowl than NCSU
    Wolfie '61