Tigers, Vols men’s basketball matchup rescheduled to next year

TENNESSEE — The Tigers and Volunteers men’s basketball programs announced Monday that the teams will play a neutral-site showdown initially scheduled for this December has been rescheduled.

The new date is Dec. 18, 2021, at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville.

The contest was postponed one year due to the programs' shared belief that the game should be contested in a sold-out area which is unlikely due to the current pandemic.

“The University of Memphis is looking forward to continuing what is a great intrastate series against Tennessee,” said Memphis head coach Penny Hardaway. “The neutral-site game at Bridgestone Arena will provide an incredible atmosphere, and I know our fans will be excited about going to Nashville to support the Tigers."

“I want to thank Bridgestone Arena for their willingness to work through a tough situation with the pandemic to host this game in December 2021. It is a game that is great for national television and brings a lot of attention to the quality of basketball in our state,” Hardaway said.

The game next year concludes the most recent installment of the Memphis-Tennessee series, a three-game contract that has already seen each team win on the other’s home court.

Both games had been sellouts.

“This was the right thing to do, and it’s the best thing for both teams' fanbases,” said Tennessee associate head coach Michael Schwartz. “We’re appreciative of Bridgestone Arena working with us to keep this game in Nashville. It should be a great statewide showcase for college basketball.”

The last 10 meetings in the series have seen each program claim five victories.

“Thank you to coach (Rick) Barnes and coach Hardaway for their commitment to bring this big game to Bridgestone Arena,” said Nashville Predators/Bridgestone Arena Senior Vice President for Entertainment and Marketing David Kells. 

“We are looking forward to hosting the next chapter in this great intrastate rivalry in a packed arena in December of 2021.”