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Vanderbilt sells naming rights to football stadium

It will always be the Dud, but now it’s officially FirstBank Stadium.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: SEP 18 Stanford at Vanderbilt Photo by Michael Wade/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Vanderbilt athletics is getting a boost from the ongoing Vandy United campaign, and as of today, that now comes with a new name for the football stadium as Vanderbilt has sold the naming rights to Nashville-based FirstBank.

Vanderbilt is not the first SEC school to sell the naming rights to its football stadium — that would be Kentucky, which has spent several years playing at Kroger Field, formerly known as Commonwealth Stadium — but this always seemed like an obvious, untapped source of revenue for university athletics, particularly since the stadium’s actual name (Vanderbilt Stadium) was almost never used, with most fans referring to the stadium as “The Dud” for Dudley Field, formerly the stadium’s official name and now just the designation of the actual playing surface.

That designation, by the way, will remain in place, per the university’s release. Also per the release, the naming rights agreement goes into effect for the 2022 season and is a 10-year contract — meaning, Saturday’s home game against Elon will be officially the first game in FirstBank Stadium.