ACC Championship back in primetime

The Atlantic Coast Conference's 2009 Dr Pepper Football Championship Game will return to prime time national television this year, with an 8 p.m. (ET) kickoff on ESPN, ACC Commissioner John Swofford announced Wednesday.

The 2009 Championship Game will be played on December 5 in Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Fla.

"We are pleased that the 2009 ACC Football Championship Game will be nationally televised by our partners at ESPN," said Swofford. "Prime-time exposure is always a plus and will be an excellent showcase for our divisional champions to compete for an ACC title and a BCS berth."

The prime time kickoff is the first for the ACC title contest since the inaugural game in Jacksonville in 2005. The ACC Championship Game has been played at 1 p.m. in each of the past three seasons. The first four ACC Championship Games were televised on ABC.

The ACC was involved in two of ESPN's highest-rated college football games of 2008. The Miami at Florida (5.0) regular season contest was the network's highest-rated regular season game, while the Champs Sports Bowl (5.2 rating), which featured Florida State and Wisconsin, was the national sports network's highest-rated bowl game of the 2008 season.

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