The opening weekend of college football is becoming the proving ground for every major team. If you want a spot in the College Football Playoff at season’s end, you better have made a statement to the selection committee from your first game all the way through championship weekend. Two teams with national title aspirations — the Florida Gators and Miami Hurricanes — will meet in Orlando to start the 2019 season, and they’re getting a prime time showing, too.
According to a press release, the NCAA approved a date change moving that massive inter-Florida showdown from August 31 — officially “Week One” in college football — back to August 24, which is known as “Week Zero.” It’ll be Gators versus Hurricanes in the Camping World Kickoff game with the entire football world watching live on ESPN.
The two universities met on the football field 49 times between 1938 to 1987, when the winner was awarded the Seminole War Canoe Trophy. Since then, the rivalry fizzled, and the teams have only met six times since, the last of which was a 21-16 win for Miami back in 2013.
The Hurricanes lead the all-time series, 29-26.
With the way these two programs are trending, it’s about time they played each other again. Florida head coach Dan Mullen is building a championship program in just his second season, and Miami’s Manny Diaz is making Miami the bad boys of college football without coaching a single game. When they finally meet at Camping World Stadium in Orlando, prepare to see the speed and power of Florida’s most-talented programs take the field.
Due to a high demand and climbing ticket prices, tickets were first distributed to season ticket holders for the neutral site game, but a public sale is not expected, according to the stadium’s press release. Tickets will first be available to those with memberships within Florida Citrus Sports. That information is available right here.
The Camping World Kickoff is becoming one of the biggest draws of the season. Alabama and Louisville met in last year’s game, while Florida State beat Ole Miss back in 2016, the game’s first year.
It’ll be ACC versus SEC once again this season, and these two in-state rivals will come ready to set the tone early in front of a national audience.