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Tennessee (1-0) will host Pittsburgh on Saturday in the Johnny Majors Classic at Neyland Stadium (noon EDT, ESPN).
Former Tennessee player Johnny Majors served as Pittsburgh’s head coach from 1973-76 and 1993-96, winning the 1976 national championship.
Majors won three Southeastern Conference championships while serving as Tennessee’s head coach from 1977-92.
Ahead of Saturday’s contest, Tennessee head coach Josh Heupel discussed the impact Majors had on both programs.
“I think it’s fitting that we get an opportunity to honor Coach Majors, just what he’s meant to both programs as well,” Heupel said.
“It’s unique that Coach Majors had such a huge impact on both programs. As a player and a coach, his legacy lives on here at Tennessee. He’s a part of the foundation of who we are. He’s a cornerstone of it. I think it’s a fitting opportunity to pay tribute to him from both programs. It’s unique that you have a coach that is that instrumental in two different programs, and very few opportunities that you get a chance to recognize that with both teams playing.”
In this Jan. 3, 1977, file photo, University of Pittsburgh coach Johnny Majors carries the Sugar Bowl trophy after Pittsburgh beat Georgia 27-3 to win the NCAA college football national championship, in New Orleans. (AP Photo/File)
Pittsburgh (1-0) head coach Pat Narduzzi also discussed Majors and honoring him Saturday.
“I love it,” Narduzzi said of the Johnny Majors Classic. “I like it the best because I’ve had a relationship with Coach Majors from his time spent here at Pitt, the days he’s been here to visit the university he loved here. Spent a couple flights with him. Spent a lot of time with him at some of the Nike clinics he was heavily involved in through his retirement years, I guess.
“I think it’s a great thing in honor of the Majors family. We’re excited about that.”