The Nashville Sports Council and the city of Nashville both had long wanted a bowl game for their city. When plans were announced to build LP Field for the Tennessee Titans, organizers felt the timing was right and the first Music City Bowl was played at Vanderbilt Stadium in 1998. The next year, the game was moved to LP Field, the home of the NFL's Tennessee Titans.

Memorable moments

• In 2000, quarterback Brad Lewis threw five touchdown passes in Don Nehlen's final game at the helm of West Virginia as the Mountaineers defeated Ole Miss 49-38.

• In 2006, Will Proctor threw a 17-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Aaron Kelly with 44 seconds left to give Kentucky a 28-20 win against Clemson.

• The 2010 game's finish was so frenetic, it caused a rule change for the next season. North Carolina, out of timeouts, found itself on the Tennessee 25-yard line with 16 seconds left. Shaun Draughn then had a 7-yard run but did not get out of bounds. As the Tar Heels hurried to get the field-goal unit on, with 17 men on the field, UNC QB T.J. Yates tried to spike the ball with one second left. Penalty flags flew as time expired. As chaos ensued, the head referee announced "the game is over."

Meanwhile, replay officials reviewed the play and put one second back on the clock. While UNC was penalized for having too many men on the field, UNC kicker Casey Barth hit a 39-yard field goal to send the game to overtime. In the second overtime, UNC intercepted Tyler Bray, then Barth kicked a 23-yard field goal to win the game for the Tar Heels 30-27. The finish led to the "10-second runoff rule" being implemented the following season.

MUSIC CITY BOWL RESULTS
YEARWINNERSCORELOSERSCORE
1998Virginia Tech38Alabama7
1999Syracuse20Kentucky13
2000West Virginia49Ole Miss38
2001Boston College20Georgia16
2002Minnesota29Arkansas14
2003Auburn28Wisconsin14
2004Minnesota20Alabama16
2005Virginia34Minnesota31
2006Kentucky28Clemson20
2007Kentucky35Florida State28
2008Vanderbilt16Boston College14
2009Clemson21Kentucky13
2010North Carolina30Tennessee27
2011Mississippi State23Wake Forest17
2012Vanderbilt38NC State24
2013Mississippi25Georgia Tech17