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Tennessee vs Bowling Green to Open 2015 in Nashville

The Vols replace UAB with Bowling Green and retain their game at LP Field.

Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

It's not Wake Forest, but it's the next-closest thing to revenge on the Clawfense:  Tennessee and Bowling Green have agreed to play in Nashville to open the 2015 season.

This replaces the game Tennessee lost when UAB shut down its football program last week, and does so with a comparable opponent:  the Blazers were 6-6 in Conference USA, while Bowling Green actually won the MAC Eastern Division title at 7-5 in Dino Babers' first season before getting crushed by Northern Illinois 51-17 in the MAC Championship Game.

The Falcons beat Indiana (45-42) in the non-conference this year, losing to Western Kentucky (59-31) and Wisconsin (68-17) along the way.  They opened MAC play 5-1 but are now on a three game losing streak including the title game.  This year's offense is 69th nationally in yards per play; in Dave Clawson's last year the Falcons did rise to 17th nationally in that same stat, further proof you do, in fact, have to give it time since Wake Forest was the only offense in college football to average less than 3.5 yards per play this year.

The Vols will lose a couple hundred thousand dollars on the exchange (better put, as pointed out in the comments, UAB owes Tennessee $925,000 as a termination payment, not a refund), paying Bowling Green $1.2 million while getting $925,000 back from UAB.  But this allows Tennessee to keep the integrity of its schedule intact and not add an additional FCS woe by way of waiver from the NCAA.  We've never had to defend our non-conference schedules here and we still don't, but I'm glad to see the Vols stay on the same level with the 2015 season opener.

So your once again complete 2015 Tennessee Football Schedule:

  • 09/05 vs Bowling Green (Nashville)
  • 09/12 vs Oklahoma
  • 09/19 vs Western Carolina
  • 09/26 at Florida
  • 10/03 vs Arkansas
  • 10/10 vs Georgia
  • 10/17 bye week
  • 10/24 at Alabama
  • 10/31 at Kentucky
  • 11/07 vs South Carolina
  • 11/14 vs North Texas
  • 11/21 at Missouri
  • 11/28 vs Vanderbilt