Tennessee is 2-0 after winning the Battle of Bristol and ready to begin SEC play with hopes of living up to those division and conference title expectations. Now that prognostication season is over, the Vols have to win the SEC East on the field and that campaign behinds on Sept. 24 in Knoxville against the hated Florida Gators.
On Monday, the SEC announced that Florida's trip to Tennessee has been picked as the SEC on CBS game of the week, slated for a 3:30 p.m. ET kickoff.
Beating Florida would be a big step forward for Butch Jones' tenure, since it would not only snap an 11-game losing streak for the program but give the Vols a key head-to-head win against another SEC East title hopeful.
Florida was projected to finish below Tennessee in the preseason media poll but the distance between those two teams looks much less significant after the first two weeks of play, particularly following the Gators' 45-7 dismantling of Kentucky last Saturday.
But don't get it confused, this matchup is about a rivalry and a streak that extends far beyond Jones' tenure.
Florida has won 11 in a row in the series, squeaking out each of the last two wins by two points combined. The 2014 matchup was a 10-9 rock fight, but last year's contest, the first of the Jim McElwain era at UF, was a thriller. Trailing for nearly the entire game, Will Grier converted fourth down after fourth down on the way to a 28-27 win.