College Corner: Vanderbilt Upgrades, MTSU Fan Experience, UTK Trailblazers

Vanderbilt Football Updates Game Day Fan Experience 

Photo: by Daniel Dubois/Vanderbilt Athletics

Vanderbilt has upgraded the fan experience for football game days heading into the 2021 season.

The univeristy has added live music and food trucks to the Vandyville experience. Located outside the stadium along Natchez Trace, Vandyville will feature close to 90 tailgating tents, food trucks and up to three stages of live music as only Nashville can provide it.

Other upgrades include previously announced concessions upgrades like the “Craft & Draft” stand and “End Zone Market” stations. Additionally, local and regional vendors have partnered with Vanderbilt Athletics for the upcoming season, including Slim & Husky’s, Daddy’s Dogs, Conecuh Sausage, IceCrown, Kernels Nashville Popcorn, Community Coffee, Puckett’s, Chick-fil-A Rivergate and Corner Pub.

Upgrades to the video board, team entrances, and the addition of polytechnics will also be new to fans this season.



MTSU To Welcome Back Beer Garden, Family Fun Zone To Floyd Stadium

Photo: by Sam Doughton/MTSU Athletics

MTSU is preparing to open Floyd Stadium at full capacity this football season and will be welcoming back a few fan favorites including the Blue Raider Beer Garden, partnering with Hop Springs Beer Park and Steel Barrel Brewery.

The beer garden will also include grilled food for fans to enjoy underneath the umbrellas and tables in the end zone alongside games like corn hole and giant Jenga. The Beer Garden opens with the gates to the stadium and will serve through the end of the third quarter. Entrance is free to fans 21 and up with their admission ticket to the game. Also returning after a successful 2019 debut is the Family Fun Zone, located behind Sections 1A-3A. Featuring inflatables, face painting, balloon animals and various carnival games throughout the season, the Family Fun Zone will also serve as the check-in for the Blue Raider Kids’ Club. New to the Family Fun Zone this season will be the inclusion of MTSU Creamery chocolate milk. The cafeteria tradition for generations of Blue Raiders will now be made available inside of Floyd Stadium.

“We’re extremely excited to welcome back our fans to Floyd Stadium,” says Director of Athletics Chris Massaro. “Fans can enjoy the return of game day traditions both before and after kickoff, there are more reasons than ever to cheer on the Blue Raiders this fall. I know our players and coaches are ecstatic to run out on the field before a full house of loud and proud Blue Raiders.”



Tennessee To Unveil Statues Honoring Football Trailblazers

The University of Tennessee will unveil a new and permanent tribute to four trailblazers from throughout the storied history of Tennessee football as a kickoff to Neyland Stadium’s year-long centennial celebration. They will be celebrating Lester McClainJackie WalkerCondredge Holloway and Tee Martin whose statues will be unveiled in the plaza outside Gate 21 at Neyland Stadium on Sept. 2 before the team’s season opener.

Tennessee has proudly led the way in providing opportunities for Black student-athletes to excel on the Southeastern Conference gridiron. Beginning in the 1960s, Tennessee’s progressive posture on racial equity led to legendary Volunteers recording several history-making firsts.

“It’s an honor for this university to be able to permanently recognize the impact of these men in such a powerful way,” says UTK’s Director of Athletics Danny White. “We are proud of what their names represent, and I believe this is a fitting tribute. They carried themselves with strength and grace as they led the way for so many others. I love that our football student-athletes will pass by this installation during every Vol Walk. I hope it serves as a reminder of those who came before them and paved the way for progress.”

Steven Boero