September 22, 2012 | 7:30 p.m. ET
Neyland Stadium | Knoxville, Tenn.
- Saturday's game represents the second all-time meeting between the Vols and Zips, with UT winning the lone meeting 52-9 in 1989 at Neyland Stadium.
- The Vols are 4-0 vs. current Mid-American Conference teams all-time with wins over Buffalo (41-10, 2011), Ohio (34-23, 2009), Northern Illinois (13-9, 2008) and Akron (52-9, 1989).
- The Vols have won eight consecutive non-conference games, dating to a win over UAB in 2010. Additionally, UT has won seven in a row at Neyland Stadium vs. non-conference foes.
- A win would mark the first nine-game, non-conference winning streak for UT since a 10-game streak from 2000-02 (2000 Southern Miss through 2002 Rutgers).
- Akron head coach Terry Bowden was the head coach at Auburn from 1993-98, and the Vols were 2-0 vs. the Tigers during that time. Tennessee defeated Auburn 30-29 in the 1997 SEC Championship Game in Atlanta and also won 17-9 at Jordan-Hare Stadium in Auburn the following year (1998).
- The game is being broadcast on Comcast Sports Southeast (CSS), which broadcast the Vols' game against MAC opponent Buffalo last season.
- Tennessee ranks third in the SEC in total offense, averaging 474.0 yards per game. The Vols are also second in the conference in passing yardage at 321.3 yards per game, slightly trailing Kentucky (322.0).
- Tennessee has scored 106 points this season, the
third-highest total for the Vols in the first three games since the 2001 season, trailing only the 114 points in 2004 and 110 points a year ago in 2011.
Early Returns Are In...
- Tennessee is in the upper echelon of the league
in multiple special teams categories, including kickoff return coverage (26.9) and punt return average (9.8).
- The upward trend in the return game continues to
be a staple under Derek Dooley, as the Vols' averages have climbed in each of the last two seasons.
- After allowing 10.3 yards per punt return during
the 2011 season, Tennessee is allowing opponents an average of only 3.3 yards per punt return thus far in 2012.
A Tennessee Win Would...
- Give Tennessee consecutive 3-1 starts for the first time since 2005-06 and three wins before the end of September for the first time since 2006, when the Vols posted the last record above .500 in August/September games for the program (4-1).
- Mark the 797th victory in Tennessee history and improve the Vols to 439-113-17 (.786) at Neyland Stadium.
- Represent the ninth consecutive non-conference win for the Vols since Sept. 25, 2010 and the eighth in a row over a non-conference opponent at Neyland Stadium.
- Improve the Vols to 5-0 all-time vs. Mid-American Conference schools.