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University of Tennessee: Prayer before games not unconstitutional

Published: Thursday, Sept. 20 2012 1:36 p.m. MDT

Fans fill Neyland Stadium in the third quarter of an NCAA college football game between Tennessee and Florida on Saturday, Sept. 15, 2012, in Knoxville, Tenn.

Wade Payne, ASSOCIATED PRESS

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Our take: Praying at public school functions has been at the heart of the culture wars for 50 years, and this latest flap over the traditional pre-kickoff invocation at University of Tennessee football games shows its not about to go away any time soon.

Praying before football games at Neyland Stadium does not violate the U.S. Constitution, University of Tennessee officials said Tuesday.

The university is still formulating its response to a cease-and-desist letter sent last week by the Freedom From Religion Foundation, but the administration does not believe there is anything wrong with the long-standing tradition of a pre-kickoff invocation, said Margie Nichols, vice chancellor for communications.

The letter arrived about a week after UT-Chattanooga announced it would replace prayer with a moment of silence before games in response to a complaint from the foundation.

Read more about UT: Prayer before games not unconstitutional on Knox News.

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