Tennessee women’s basketball announced on Tuesday afternoon that the rivalry with Connecticut will be renewed for a 2019 and 2020 season matchup.
According to the press release sent out by the team, the 2019-2020 season will have UConn hosting Tennessee, with a portion of the proceeds going to the Pat Summitt Foundation and the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.
In the following 2020-2021 season, Tennessee will play host in Knoxville, with a portion of the proceeds again benefitting the Pat Summitt Foundation and the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, in addition to the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame.
The rivalry between the Lady Vols and the Huskies is one of the most storied in women’s collegiate basketball history. The two teams have combined for 19 national championships, 336 appearances as #1 in the AP Poll, and multiple basketball legends at both the college and professional level. It’s fair to say that the rivalry was essential in popularizing women’s basketball.
The two programs played each other in the regular season from 1995 to 2007. After the 2007 season, the regular season series was discontinued and the teams have not met since. Connecticut holds a 13-9 lead in the overall series, but Tennessee won the three most recent contests. Six of the matchups have been in the Final Four or the NCAA National Championship.
ESPN will televise the two upcoming games.
Regardless of how Tennessee fans feel about the direction of the program, the rivalry with UConn used to be a staple of the athletics season. It simply feels right to have it back in place.