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Tennessee nixes chance to play USC in 2011

July 7, 2010 12:00:00 AM PDT
Tennessee athletic director Mike Hamilton says the Volunteers have turned down a chance to play Southern California and coach Lane Kiffin in the 2011 Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game. Hamilton says he's been approached several times by Chick-fil-A Bowl president Gary Stokan about the potential 2011 matchup. He says he has told Stokan no each time because the Vols' schedule can't accommodate another tough opponent during a year that will be part of the team's rebuilding efforts.

Hamilton says the decision wasn't related to any bad blood between the programs after Kiffin left Tennessee in January and that the Vols would have turned down the chance to face any big opponent in the Chick-fil-A game played in Atlanta.