Tiger Nation, it's finally football time.
Saturday afternoon at the Liberty Bowl the University of Memphis hosts Duke in its season opener. Kickoff is slated for 3:30 p.m.
So just how fired up is Tiger Nation? Well, more than 24 hours from kickoff the first Tiger Tailgater is already taking place at Tiger Lane.
Even if you have no grill or no tailgate you can still tailgate Saturday before the home opener. The Redwing Group in partnership with the University of Memphis will host its 2nd Annual Rhythm & Blue Community Tailgate at Tiger Lane Lot 12 from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m.
"This is the 2nd Annual Rhythm & Blue Tailgate event for the University of Memphis," said Berline Boyd, Tiger alumni Tailgater. "We are excited a new season, new conference and we play Duke tomorrow, so we are looking forward to having the city come out."
Former Tigers football player Phillip Beliles plans to be among the Tiger faithful at the home opener.
"I'll be there Saturday yes," said the 2008 U of M graduate. "Looking forward do some tailgating, eat a lot of food, going to the game. Like I said all my family, bunch of friends, former teammates, they all plan on being there ... So were finally ready to kickoff. Good luck, go Tigers, go Tigers!"
Dave Woloshin, the radio voice of Tigers football, said the university is expecting between 40-45,000 for the Tigers home opener at the Liberty Bowl against the Blue Devils. Having a huge crowd at the first Tiger game is very important, but not as important is a first game win.
"So tomorrow's game is critical in this regard," Woloshin said. "There is 40-45,000 that show up. You know the No. 1 marketing tool in the world is? It's W's. If you win you sell 42,000 for next game."
You can watch the wrap of Saturday's game Sunday evening at 10 p.m. on FOX13 with the very first Justin Fuente Show with Woloshin and FOX13 Sports Director Matt Stark.
So go to the game support the Memphis Tigers as they venture into their first season in the American Athletic Conference and make Game One the first big win in a new day of football for the Tiger Nation.
If you are still looking for tickets to the game, how does $5 sound? To kick off this year's "Million Meals Challenge," the University of Memphis has partnered with 42 area Kroger grocery stores to sell 10,000 $5 tickets for the Tigers' season opener against Duke.
The university's athletic department will donate $1 from each $5 ticket sold at Kroger stores. You can purchase the tickets at the guest services desk at your local Kroger store before the start of Saturday afternoon's game.
If all the tickets are sold, proceeds will result in 80,000 meals for needy families.