Wednesday, the University shared the deal had been made with Food City and will bring in more than $20 million over the next 10 years.
According to UT, the deal will aid new and needed renovations of the arena and upgrades to the facility’s interior and exterior. Some of those renovations include new club amenities, updates to the Ray Mears Room, a state-of-the-art center-hung video board, and modernization for the exterior façade of the facility.
In the release, the University began calling the arena Thompson-Boling Arena at Food City Center.
“We are thrilled to partner with Food City on this transformative naming rights opportunity, the first of its kind for Tennessee Athletics,” said Director of Athletics Danny White. “Food City is a neighborhood partner who knows our state and region extremely well and has been a key partner for Tennessee Athletics for nearly 30 years. Food City is a valued member of our community and bleeds orange, and we look forward to taking this partnership to another level. I want to thank the Smith family, as well as the Food City team for this long-term partnership.”
Thompson-Boling Arena opened in 1987 and was named for the B. Ray Thompson Sr. (1906-1987) and former UT President Dr. Edward J. Boling (1922-2015), according to the arena’s website.