KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — Following Tennessee’s best football season in over 20 years, the university has announced that they’ve blown past their 2023 season ticket sales goal months ahead of the first game.

Tennessee Athletics announced that they had sold 70,255 season tickets as of April 11, almost 10,000 more than their stated goal of 61,000.

Existing season ticket holders renewed at a rate of 96 percent. Nearly 9,000 new season tickets have been sold.

A five-year strategic athletics plan was unveiled by the university last year, calling for ambitious season ticket sales goals as well as significant investment into athletics facilities and resources for athletes.

Tennessee football has now exceeded the season ticket sales goal set in the strategic plan for the second straight season.

“In an era of stadium downsizing, Vol Nation continues to send a strong message that its passion is unrivaled with over 70,000 season tickets sold and still five months until kickoff,” said Vice Chancellor/Director of Athletics Danny White. “We envisioned that goal by year five when we launched Rise Glorious, but Vol Nation’s unwavering support and the excitement surrounding the program allowed us to eclipse that benchmark in year one. We are ecstatic to be on the cusp of selling out our season ticket inventory!”  

The exceptional sales numbers coincide with the multiyear Neyland Stadium improvement plan. Major renovations have already been completed like the new video board, north end zone party deck and new chairback section behind the Vols’ sideline. Stadium work will continue through 2026.

The south end of the stadium will be closed during the annual Orange & White spring football game on Saturday as renovation work continues.

Despite the renovations reducing capacity, Neyland Stadium will still hold over 100,000 fans.

Tennessee will kick off its third year under head coach Josh Heupel on Sept. 2 in Nashville when they take on Virginia before their true home opener on Sept. 9 against Austin Peay. Check out the complete 2023 home schedule here.