Clemson, Georgia Tech in marquee football games on opening weekend

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A prime time kickoff for the Atlantic Coast Conference Championship Game, three games on national television on the opening weekend of the season, and a minimum of 13 nationally-televised games highlight the early season TV and game time schedule announced Thursday by the conference.

Two ACC teams will play in the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Games on back-to-back days in the Georgia Dome.

North Carolina State will face Tennessee on Aug. 31 in a 7:30 p.m. game televised by ESPNU. Clemson, the 2011 conference champion, will face Auburn on Sept. 1 in a 7 p.m. game on ESPN.

On Labor Day Monday night, Georgia Tech will travel to Virginia Tech. The 8 p.m. game will be on ESPN.

The ACC Championship Game will be played on Dec. 1 at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte, N.C. It will be televised by either ABC, with an 8 p.m. kickoff, or ESPN at 7:45.

National champion Alabama will face West Virginia in the 2014 Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game at the Georgia Dome.

The Aug. 30, 2014, game will mark the first meeting between the teams.

NOTRE DAME: Quarterback Tommy Rees pleaded not guilty Thursday to charges stemming from an incident in which police used pepper spray to subdue him after an off-campus party.

JETS: Signed Antonio Allen, a seventh-round draft pick out of South Carolina, to a four-year contract.

SAINTS: Suspended linebacker Jonathan Vilma filed a defamation lawsuit against NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, claiming the league’s top executive made false statements that tarnished Vilma’s reputation and hindered his ability to earn a living playing football.

ON THE BLOCK: Hall of Famer Lawrence Taylor is auctioning off his 1991 Super Bowl championship ring.

SCP Auctions President David Kohler said the highest bid for the ring stood at $67,292 as of mid-day Thursday. SCP has estimated the ring’s value at $75,000 to $100,000. The online auction ends Saturday.

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