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2016 Opener at Tennessee Moved to Thurs., Sept. 1

Eric Boggs and the Mountaineers will open the 2016 season on Thursday, Sept. 1 at Tennessee. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. on the SEC Network. Photo by Allyson Lamb / App State Athletics

Appalachian State University’s 2016 season opener at Tennessee has been moved to Thursday, Sept. 1 to accommodate a national telecast on the SEC Network, Tennessee director of athletics Dave Hart announced on Friday. The game will kick off at 7:30 p.m. ET at Neyland Stadium in Knoxville, Tenn.

“It’s great to be a part of the opening night of college football and to have another opportunity to showcase our program on a national stage,” Appalachian State head coach Scott Satterfield said. “It’s sure to be a terrific atmosphere under the lights in Knoxville. We’re looking forward to kicking off the season on Sept. 1.”

Appalachian State is opening the season on a Thursday night for the first time since 2000, when it defeated Wake Forest, 20-16, in Winston-Salem, N.C. The Mountaineers’ opener will be nationally televised for the fourth time in the last 10 years (2007 at Michigan on the Big Ten Network, 2008 at LSU on ESPN Classic, 2014 at Michigan on ESPN2).

Appalachian State is coming off an 11-2 campaign in 2015, which was capped by a 31-29 victory over Ohio in the Raycom Media Camellia Bowl. Tennessee was 9-4 last season, including a 45-6 win over Northwestern in the Outback Bowl.

Despite being separated by only 161 miles, Appalachian State and Tennessee are squaring off for the first time on the gridiron.