CLARKSVILLE, Tenn.-For the first time in school history, Austin Peay State University will play Tennessee in football during the 2013 season.
The Governors will travel to Knoxville to play the Volunteers to kickoff the season, Saturday, Aug. 31.
"It was an opportunity that arose that we couldn't turn down," APSU head coach Rick Christophel said. "It will be exciting for our players and our fans. It also will help us in recruiting.
"A lot of the kids we recruit are from Tennessee. Many of them grew up with the hope of some day playing in Neyland Stadium.
"It will give our guys an opportunity to play against some of the best players in the country."
It will be one of two straight games the Governors, a Football Championship Subdivision member, will play in 2013 against the Tennessee-based Southeastern Conference schools, both Bowl Championship Series members. The Govs will play Vanderbilt, Sept. 7. In addition, the Govs will play a third Football Subdivision team, Ohio, Sept. 21, sandwiched around a contest at Southern Conference school Chattanooga.
"We have a very, very tough schedule to start the season," Christophel said. "In addition, we also will be playing Chattanooga all in the first four weeks. But we will have a week off before opening OVC play at home against Eastern Kentucky."
The schedule will help catapult the Governors into a new era. After the 2013 season concludes, the west side of Governors Stadium will be torn down and rebuilt for the 2014 season.
It will be a fourth straight season the Govs will play against BCS opponents. In 2010, the Govs traveled to Wisconsin to play. In 2011, the Govs played at Cincinnati and this season APSU played at Virginia Tech, Sept. 8.