It may be a rivalry, but, in the end, it’s still just a football game.
With Hurricane Irma-related concerns lingering, it was announced earlier this week that the Tennessee-Florida game this Saturday would (minus nine Gator football players) go on as planned in Gainesville. However, because of the widespread damage spread across the state because of the historic storm, UF will be short-staffed this weekend as far as game-day security goes as agencies that would normally be on hand to help have more pressing issues to tend to elsewhere.
Enter the University of Tennessee Police Department, which will be sending 24 of its officers to help with game-day security at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium for the SEC opener.
“When we saw what happened in Florida last week, obviously I was concerned about our colleagues there,” UT police chief Troy Lane said according to the Knoxville News Sentinel. “I reached out to the University of Florida and offered any assistance. As you can imagine, they were excited to hear from us. …
“We’re happy to help out where we can.”
The two dozen officers amount to nearly half of the 51 in the department, with Lane adding that it shouldn’t leave the university shorthanded in their absence. The tab for sending the officers to Gainesville will be picked up by the University of Florida.