Tennessee plans to “rebrand” its football student section by giving it a name selected by the student body.
Head coach Butch Jones told a group of student leaders during a meeting on Tuesday that the new name would be selected after this season and would be chosen based on the results of a campus-wide competition.
"It will be a chance for you all to market this athletic program and create a brand that you're proud of," Jones said in quotes posted on UT’s website.
Tennessee praised students for their attendance at Saturday’s season opener against Austin Peay. UT officials said more than 10,000 student tickets were used. The announced attendance for the game was 97,169.
Students are allotted 12,683 tickets and the only noticeable area of empty seats as Saturday’s game was in the upper portion of the student section.
The number was still a dramatic increase over last year, when UT officials said the average student attendance was under 5,000.
UT officials have met with student leaders to find ways to fill the empty seats. Student leaders agreed to allow a portion of the student tickets for Tennessee's game against South Carolina on Oct. 19 to be sold to the public. The game sits in the heart of fall break for students and historical data suggests there are likely to be thousands of unclaimed seats.
For 2014, UT officials have discussed a plan to swap the student’s upper level seats -- the sections that are most often empty -- for a larger presence in the lower bowl.
Evan Woodbery covers Tennessee football. Follow him on Twitter.