A tight opener for UT?

If historical precedent is any indication, Phillip Fulmer will guide Tennessee to a tense victory in the Vols' Sept. 3 opener against Alabama-Birmingham.

Fulmer stands 11-1 against teams currently in Conference USA but three of the last four meetings were nail-biters decided by three points or less. The exception, however, was a 49-28 blitz of Memphis in 2001.

Fulmer's only loss to a C-USA team was a 21-17 setback at Memphis in 1996. His most lopsided victory against a Conference USA team was a 42-0 drubbing of Southern Mississippi in 1995.

Here's a recap of Fulmer's games vs. C-USA teams:

1993: Tennessee 45, Louisville 10

1994: Tennessee 24, Memphis 13

1995: Tennessee 27, East Carolina 7

1995: Tennessee 42, Southern Mississippi 0

1996: Memphis 21, Tennessee 17

1997: Tennessee 44, Southern Mississippi 20

1998: Tennessee 42, Houston 7

1998: Tennessee 37, Alabama-Birmingham 13

1999: Tennessee 17, Memphis 16

2000: Tennessee 19, Southern Mississippi 16

2000: Tennessee 19, Memphis 17

2001: Tennessee 49, Memphis 28


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