ESPN’s College GameDay Built by The Home Depot Travels to Knoxville, Tenn. for the 10th Time

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ESPN’s College GameDay Built by The Home Depot Travels to Knoxville, Tenn. for the 10th Time

  • College football’s premier pregame will make its ninth visit to the Florida – Tennessee rivalry game
  • College GameDay’s last trip to Knoxville was six years ago to the day – Sept. 24, 2016

ESPN’s College GameDay Built by The Home Depot heads to Knoxville, Tenn., for the 10th time – and its first Rocky Top trip since 2016. The show will be live from Ayres Hall Lawn at the University of Tennessee from 9 a.m. – noon ET (ESPN and ESPNU, ESPN App) on Saturday ahead of the No. 11 Vols game against No. 20 Florida.

College GameDay’s visit to Knoxville marks the show’s ninth visit to a Florida – Tennessee rivalry game and the 40th GameDay show featuring Florida. The trip to the Volunteer State will be the 426th road show.

Rece Davis leads the show in his eighth season as host and is joined at the desk by GameDay analysts Desmond Howard, Kirk Herbstreit, Lee Corso, Pat McAfee and David Pollack. Reporters Jen Lada, Gene Wojciechowski – a Tennessee alum, and newcomer Jess Sims, along with research producer Chris ‘The Bear’ Fallica and college football insider Pete Thamel, round out the GameDay crew for the season.

College GameDay continues its strong start to the 2022 season with its best three-week start for viewership since 2010 when the show was two hours instead of three. The premier pregame show is averaging 2.1 million viewers, up 18% from 2021 following last week’s show at Appalachian State, which averaged 2.2 million viewers and a peak audience of 2.8 million viewers in the final hour.

Scheduled Features & Highlights

  • The Legend of Chad Powers – In this excerpt from Eli’s Places, which is streaming exclusively on ESPN+, Eli Manning goes undercover at Penn State to get a true look at the Nittany Lions’ “run-on” program to learn what it takes to make it as a walk-on in college football.
  • Rebirth of a Rivalry? – For years, the Tennessee-Florida rivalry was the September destination stop for college football, thanks to annual top 10 rankings, NFL-caliber rosters and the playful but effective verbal knives thrown at UT’s Phillip Fulmer by his tormentor Steve Spurrier. The rivalry has grown lopsided but it hasn’t grown friendlier as Florida has taken up residence in Tennessee’s collective head. (Reporter: Gene Wojciechowski)
  • Get To Know Hendon HookerJen Lada sits with the Tennessee signal-caller to learn why he says his Goldendoodle has made him a better quarterback and how the thought of not being able to play football changed his outlook on the game, helping him become the leader the Volunteers have been seeking for years.
  • Jimbo Fisher ConversationMarty Smith visits with the Texas A&M head coach and discusses managing sky-high expectations and more with the seasoned coach.

Tennessee head coach Josh Heupel will join the GameDay crew during the show along with a live check in from Winston-Salem, N.C., with Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney and Wake Forest head coach Dave Clawson ahead of their match up.

Additional GameDay guests, including this week’s guest picker, will be announced ahead of Saturday’s show on ESPN PR’s Twitter and College GameDay’s Twitter.

Corso’s Count 

  • Lee Corso has worn the Florida headgear 22 times and is 15-7 in those headgear picks and is 5-7 when picking against the Gators
  • The Vols have only been picked five times by Corso and he is 3-2 in those game while he stands at 8-4 when picking against Tennessee

ESPN’s Expanded Digital Coverage
ESPN’s social and digital pre-pregame show, Countdown to GameDay Live, is back for the 2022-23 season every Saturday this fall. Co-hosts Christine Williamson, Harry Douglas and Harry Lyles Jr. will be live from Knoxville on Sept. 24 at 8:30 a.m. ET. The show is available across Twitter, YouTube, Facebook and the ESPN App.

Additional details throughout the week can be found HERE.

For onsite information, please visit College GameDay’s Hub HERE.

Julie McKay

I joined ESPN in 2022 as a member of the communications department working on college sports. My passion for college sports came at an early age in a divided household (Big Ten Conference-divided, that is) and followed that to the University of Wisconsin-Madison (sorry, Dad). Four years in the Athletic Communications Department, along with internships with the Big Ten Conference, Big Ten Network and NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament, cemented my career path. After spending some time in sports media PR in San Francisco, I’ve spent five-plus years focused in golf, with stints at the American Junior Golf Association, Augusta National and Buffalo Agency, working with the USGA, Youth on Course and Destination Kohler, among others. Despite being a proud Wisconsin native, I’ll forever betray my home state as a lifelong Chicago sports fan. My dog Rizzo knows there’s always next year and wishes his namesake would return home to the North Side.
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