Recent Comments
We are still bitter about Peyton not winning, and we have never had a Heisman winner. Yes, Woodson returned punts, but he was ranked in the mid 50's for yards per return that year and over 13 yards less per return than whoever was the punt return leader that year. Woodson is a total class act, though. For the Vols' other runners up, I would have voted Charlie Ward over Heath Shuler. That was fair. Paul Hornung from ND really shouldn't have won. ND was 3-7, and he threw more INT's than TD's. Johnny Majors was runner up. I agree with Johnny though, when asked much later who should have one. He said Jim Brown should have won it. Regardless, good luck in the CFP. I think Hooker should have made the top 4, and I see your point on Corum. He's a beast.
As a Vol fan, I have always been down on the Hypesman, but Hooker not even getting an invite is a joke. Stroud only played one decent team and was not a factor. I bet Hooker and Bennett would put up even bigger numbers if they played PAC 12 defenses. I have not watched TCU, so I have no opinion on Duggan. I guess the only outcome that would make me pay any attention to this award would be if Bennett would win. He should, but I'm guessing he won't. There are too many voters outside the Southeast that won't vote for Southeast players.
This will be the most orange Orange bowl ever. They should let both wear their home uniforms. I'm less confident without Hooker at QB, and if Dabo has finally switched to Klubnik (I would prefer he start DJ, who can't seem to throw). I think another key will be who misses the game. It's a big bowl for the Vols, since we haven't been to a Big 6 in a long time, however, some players may not risk injury for a non CFP game. Clemson may have players to also opt out, especially since a non CFP Big 6 game is a disappointment for them. Finally, our OC, Alex Golesh, has left for USF. Our offensive staff will have to adjust for how the get plays into the game, so that could have as much affect on our offense as Milton playing instead of Hooker. I certainly hope that all SEC teams win their bowls. Until the CFP is over, I am a huge Dawg fan. Roll Tide! Hail State! Geaux Tigahs! Hotty Toddy! Go Gators! Go Cocks! Go Wildcats! Go Tigers (without a Cajun accent)! Sooie Pig!
Where I struggle is should a team be out of the CFP if a key player is injured. I don't think my Vols could be any playoff team without Hooker. I do think we should be in ahead of Bama based on the mentioned criteria of the committee (Vols win head to head against Bama, better record vs mutual opponents, more wins vs. bowl eligible teams, etc. The committee says we are behind because we have the worst lost. That is fair, but they should state that worse lost is in the criteria. I'm not bothered we are out, since we have 2 decisive losses. What would bother me more is if Caleb Williams wins the Hypesman over Hooker. Yes, Williams put up big numbers against PAC 12 defenses. However, Bo Nix also put up big numbers against PAC 12 defenses after being ineffective for 2 years and a game against SEC defenses. I don't think Hooker would win, but I would take him over Williams against weak defenses (Hooker put up those numbers against 5 of the top 20 ranked defenses when he played them). I am also puzzled why no one mentions Bennett. All QB's are game managers. That is a key thing that all successful QB's must do. However, Bennett makes plays that win games. He doesn't just sit back there hoping to not make a mistake. Considering that Ohio State had more overall Hypesman awards than the entire SEC until Tebow won his makes me think that that awards is a bit of a joke. Peyton got screwed (Woodson was the 56th ranked punt returner out of 108 D1 schools. I have no problem with Charlie Ward over Heath Shuler, as I would have voted the same way. Paul Horning, who led ND top a 3-7 record, throwing more picks than TD's, should not have won over Johnny Majors, however, I agree with Johnny Majors - Jim Brown should have won, but white voters didn't vote for Jim Brown. I think Hooker should place over Williams. If I had a vote, I would probably put 1. Bennett 2.Hooker 3. Bryce 4. the RB guy from Michigan, then Williams at 5. Sorry for the no train of though post :-) Good luck to all SEC teams in the Playoff and Bowl Games
Here’s how the Vols get in. All top 4 teams get blown out, and Ryan Day and Nick Saban are filmed beating up members of the committee
If UGa wins back to back, I think they could be considered great. Sure, they didn't get up for some games where they overmatched the competition, but they shut down the #1 and #4 offenses based on yards per game.
1. Coaches leave programs often, so I really didn't have a problem with anyone recruited by Pruitt wanting to leave after he was fired (or any other player that leaves their school when their coach is fired or leaves for another job. 2. I have no idea if this was in play or not, but I read somewhere that any player that may have received money from Pruitt was encouraged to go, so we wouldn't have any players left that got money. I really don't know about To'o To'o, but I've read in a few places that was why some other players left.
The DM's were an odd thing for Freeze to do. He obviously didn't know that DM's are permanent and shareable. I also think the Liberty legal staff wasn't happy that an employee of Liberty was DM'ing someone suing the university. That was poor judgment on a lot of levels. He certainly can coach. I guess he trading the good money and low pressure Liberty job to a place where he could win a title.
Considering that our secondary has struggled and we had 5 DB's our for the game for injuries, I was shocked that Vandy didn't start trying to throw the ball until well after the game was out of hand. Our run D has been pretty good, so I'm glad they decided to try to beat us almost exclusively running. It was also crazy that we averaged 11.7 yard per carry. Yes, last week's loss was crushing, but I don't think any Vol fan saw 10-2 coming. I think our over/under win total was 7.5 in Vegas before the season started.
There's a pretty simple solution to stop SEC bias: have another conference win 13 of the last 20 NCAA titles.
I really wish we could edit. I meant 9-2 this year. Still, we are relevant again, after 16 years of irrelevance.
15-7, with 9-1 this year, needs some context. 15-7 for whoever replaces Young or Bennett next year would not be very good at Bama and Georgia. 15-7 after 4-8, 5-7,8-5, and 3-7 is turning a dormant program around. He will still probably finish top 4 for the Heisman, which is a great career.
I think Georgia's offense vs our defense was a wider gap than the gap between our offense and Georgia's defense, even though that gap was very wide. I think Smart could have hung 50+ on us if he wanted to. Your WR's generally were running around uncovered, whether we blitzed or dropped 8. To be clear, we could not run that ball at all against Georgia last year or this year.
Really not sure how the writer confused Kentucky uniforms with yours. I still enjoy the site, but they don't seem to have an editor.
Random thoughts: 1. I have seen many posts on different forums that the Vols are still ahead of schedule with this season being much better than expectations going into the season. While that is true, this was still a brutal loss. We had a golden opportunity to make the CFP, and we failed miserably to cash it in, making a QB having a horrible season look like an all star. We are a long way from having the depth of talent to be a perennial CFP contender, so we have to cash in when we have a shot. No, I don't think we were going to win it all, but making the CFP would have been a huge accomplishment for this team. I the new 12 team format being proposed, I think last night's loss was so bad that we wouldn't have made that format either. Maybe I missed several blitzes that failed (I don't think I did, since I saw several blitzes against Georgia that Georgia picked up), but our gameplan seemed to play passive and hope SC would play like they have all season. After they played lights out, we continued to sit back passively. You would have thought we brought in Sal Sunseri to guest DC for a game - Sunseri's defenses were the worst we had, and last night looked like those gloomy days. 2. I do think we finally have a good coach that is getting us better. I do expect a step back next year. Hooker is gone, but we also lose 2 starters and 2 contributors to the OL, 2 TE's, and a lot at LB. We can't reload like a Georgia can yet. It will be interesting to see how Milton plays. Last night, it seemed like every pass was getting more overthrown. He started off pretty good, then started throwing bullets where touch passes were needed. I know we have Nico coming in, and everyone is sleeping on Tayven Jackson, who is really talented. My biggest concern is OL, 3. I here a lot about our gimmicky offense, and that it won't work in the SEC. Well, it has worked very well in the SEC, except against Georgia, which shuts down all offenses. Yes, we have wide splits and run plays quickly, but in the end, we need to successfully run the ball to set up play action, which is key to a lot of offenses. I think the offense will continue to work well, but like all offenses, we have to win in the trenches. We did against Bama and lit them up. We did not control the LOS against Georgia, and we lost. 4. I hope Hooker is ok. He played himself into getting drafted somewhere in the NFL this season. However, we will be 25 next year, and I can see some teams passing if his knee issue turns out to be bad. Lest time for him to recover and have playing years left. 5. If our defense plays against Vandy like we played against SC, we could lose. That was a horrifically bad performance.
I almost mentioned Lattimore in my post. I hated playing against him, but loved watching him play. He was one of the best RB's I have seen. I was watching that game, and felt horrible when he went down.
Since we can't edit here, I am replying to myself. In my Vol chat group, during the 3rd quarter, that it was really strange looking like we were playing a prevent defense while behind. There was no aggressive defensive play calling. Sure, it may not have worked, but what we were trying was clearly not working. Yes, Georgia's offense did whatever they wanted against us, but I at least saw a lot of stunts and blitzes that were tried. In this game, it was rush 4, play soft, and watch the corners get scorched. On offense, as bad as South Carolina's run D has been, I was surprised we didn't run very well. Sure, we had to pass more when we got behind, but we weren't very effective when it mattered. Finally, I thought we would make the CFP, but did not think we would win it all. Now that we are thoroughly out, I certainly hope the Dawgs win it all again.
First, hats off the Shane Beamer and South Carolina. We were thoroughly outcoached and outplayed. The Vol fans have certainly had plenty of disappointing losses in our last 15 years of futility, but this was the biggest gut punch loss since we lost to LSU in the SECCG in 2001, costing us a spot in the BCS Championship game. This loss cost us the CFP, probably the Sugar Bowl, and a slight chance at a Heisman (even if we won, I think the Midwest voters would have voted Stroud in - I have no opinion on Stroud, as I have watched no OSU games this year). What baffles me the most is that we continued to rush 4 and play with big cushions from the DB's (not talking about when they couldn't cover deep, but giving 7 yard cushions on 3rd and 6, 12 yard cushions on 1st and 10, etc.) when it was clear that was not remotely close to working. The key sequence was in the 3rd quarter when we were down 4 and finally blitzed and got a big sack to force 3rd and 20. Then, we rushed 4 (knowing it wasn't working), and gave up a key 3rd down conversion. It was an embarrassingly bad defensive game plan. If we play like that on defense next week, Vandy could beat us. As for South Carolina, I hope you prove this wasn't a fluke offensive performance and beat Clemson next week. Also, when Hooker went down, I thought the Gamecock fans were very respectful getting silent while Hooker was down. I hope Hooker is ok, but that looked really bad.
Obviously, we are out of the playoff. This loss was so bad that we probably lost the Sugar Bowl as well.
I don't really care who the artists are for this event, but I find it a little odd that the headline of the article is a sentence and 2 paragraphs, followed by 4 paragraphs about the possibility of the Vols making the CFP. It seems kind of random.
1. Two things can be simultaneously true. Georgia looks like the best team in the country to me, and the Vols look like a legitimate top 5 team. Saying that Heupel's offense won't work in the SEC makes little sense to me, as we have beaten all but 1 SEC team. We have played against 5 teams with a defense ranked in the Top 20. So, we have beaten some pretty good defenses, even though we couldn't beat Georgia's defense (not sure if any other team has enough DB's that can shut down our WR's 1 on 1, other than Georgia). Our offense has been very successful, even though our last few recruiting rankings have not been that high. I still believe the old adage - it's more about the Jimmys and Joes than the X's and O's. I think our offense works. 2. If TCU runs the table, they are in the CFP. I don't have a problem with that. 3. The we lost to UGa on purpose and won the 2nd half is also crazy. If we had beaten Georgia, we were in the CFP win or lose in the SECCG. Also, the criteria for winning the second half for Georgia was to maintain the lead and run out the clock, which is exactly what they did. 4. I would love a rematch with Georgia, because it means we made it to the CFP. I still don't see how we run the ball effectively, which is crucial for our offense to work.
I'm really baffled by the we lost on purpose idea. If we beat UGA, we would have locked up a spot in the CFP, win or lose the SECCG, just like Georgia is in the CFP no matter what. Also, if we lose, we are gambling that TCU doesn't run the table, and that Oregon or USC doesn't run the table with a dominant win in the PAC 12 Championship. We have lost 5 in a row to Georgia. Finally, we haven't won the SEC in 24 years and want to win it again. This is nonsense. Also, I think most people, including me, expect Georgia to win it all. If Georgia is overrated, who has a better resume? The dominated in their 2 biggest games.
1. I'm not upset about it. If TCU is undefeated at the end of the year, I think they should get in. Yes, there schedule isn't great, but it's not bad, either. The Vols do need TCU to lose. 2. While the rest of the Vols schedule isn't tough (though Mizzou's defense is really good), it also doesn't give us an opportunity for a quality win that they other top 6 teams have. That is where a PAC 12 team could pass us 3. We need either Michigan or Ohio State to win comfortably. 4. Remember when all the sportswriters said it was a travesty when OSU/UM didn't get rematch and that there were clearly the best two teams, but Florida got in a destroyed Ohio State? I know that's a random thought, but it popped into my head. 4. I agree with other posters. LSU beating Georgia is the worst case scenario for the Vols.
The Vols still have a lot to play for, considering how bad we've been since 2007. 11-1 is a great season, especially vs. expectations. The Vols still have a pretty good shot at the CFP, and as this article says,the Sugar Bowl is much better than what we have had lately (still a little clueless why it is 11 am local time game). Georgia is clearly better. Sure, almost all Vol fans penciled this in as a loss preseason, but it still hurt. I think the Vols can make a few adjustments and do better in the passing game (there was once clear TD pass missed, a potential TD pass missed, and a route Hooker didn't see that could have been 6). However, I see no adjustments that we can make that will enable us to run the ball against Georgia. Without that, the Georgia DL can just pin their ears back and pass rush. Now, if we did hit some of those open TD's, Kirby will be more aggressive on offense. We had no pass rush and poor coverage. If our offense hits some big plays, then maybe a 27-13 loss would be 42-21 loss. I didn't think our offense would dominant Georgia, but going in, I was much more concerned about our defense vs. Georgia's offense. Good luck to the Dawgs the rest of the way.
I don't feel like replying to the several threads addressing this, but I agree that the Vols D didn't control Georgia's offense. Kirby mainly burned clock in the 2nd half. I do think our run defense actually played fairly well, but we had no pass rush and no coverage downfield. I do think the Vols defense is better than Oregon's though. If it does come down Oregon and the Vols, I think our loss at Athens doesn't look as bad as Oregon's loss in Atlanta, though that was close to a home game for Georgia. For the rest of the CFP, I also think the Vols should get in over the loser of OSU/Michagan. Sure, I'm a biased Vol fan, but other than those 2 teams, the Big 10 looks really down this year. I think the Vols will have more quality wins than the loser of that game. I would prefer to make the CFP and not win it all than win the Sugar Bowl. I think it would be great for the SEC to have a different team make the CFP, adding a 4th conference team to make it. While I think we can make adjustments to do a little better on offense if we play Georgia again, I don't see how we could run the ball on Georgia. When our running game gets shut down, we don't do very well. Still, I would rather get another shot than not (I would really prefer we somehow sneak into the #3 position in the CFP). Of course, the Vols need to tune that out and take care of Mizzou, South Carolina, and Vandy. One last thing about Georgia, I didn't think Nolan Smith being out was a big deal, other than I hate he got injured. The next guy up is still going to be a talented player. Whatever the gap is between the Georgia and the Vols' starters and Georgia's starters, the gap between our second string is much larger. I think Georgia has that advantage over everyone. The Vols still need 2 more recruiting classes to have quality depth everywhere (while Georgia has elite depth everywhere). Finally, I'm not sure which half of this sentence would have shocked me more if you told me before the season started. I need TCU to lose so the Vols can make the CFP.
Here are my thoughts: 1. People that just saw the score and not the game would think this was much more competitive than it was. After each team had two series, even when the score was still close, I thought Georgia looked much better. 2. Hooker missed Hyatt for a TD early and looked at the wrong route when the slot was breaking free for what could have been a TD. You will only get a couple of open routes like this in a game against Georgia, and you have to cash them in. That said, if we hit those TD's, Georgia would have score more. We couldn't pressure Bennett or cover. Georgia could have scored at least 2 more TD's if they wanted to. 3. We only averaged 2.2 yards per carry. That was my biggest concern. I think the misconception of the Vols' offense is that it is pass heavy. We actually run more plays than pass. No safety will bite on play action if we can't run. 4. This has still been a great season for the Vols after 15+ years in the ditch. Barring a slip up against Mizzou, South Carolina, or Vandy, 11-1 is massive progress. Before the season, my prediction was 8-4 or 9-3 if everything broke our way. 5. Before the game, I thought Georgia was the better team and will repeat as national champs. (I did think we had a small chance to win, but no longer thought that 10 minutes into the game). I still think Georgia repeats. I still hope the Vols back into the CFP, though. We need Clemson and TCU to lose, though.
Here are a few random thoughts. 1. I am more concerned about Georgia's offense vs. the Vols defense than vice versa. The Vols are good a QB hurries, but Bennett is really good at extending plays. He keeps his eyes downfield and can make the throw, or run for a lot of yards. If Georgia score 40 points, then the Vols have to score almost every drive. Not impossible, but also no margin for error. 2. At the end of the day, I think the most important stat in defense is points. The Vols are currently 4th in the SEC in giving up 21 points per game. Yes, they give up a lot of yards, but 21 points per game is not a bad defense. Obviously, Georgia's defense if much better. 3. Someone else made the point that the Vols may generate more turnovers because the defense takes so many chances. I think that is complimentary football for the Vols offense. We score quickly, so prioritizing trying to steal a possession or two makes sense to me. If we can get a turnover, or a big negative play (now that we are much better on 3rd down vs. last year's horrible 3rd down stats) that give us 3rd and long. I know the normal definition of complementary football is time consuming drives to give the defense rest, but I think our coaching staff's strategy makes sense for our style of offense. 4. I think it's a big advantage for the Vols to start of #1 in the CFP rankings, because that puts us in better position if we have a loss. 5. I don't think Georgia being #3 is really extra motivation for them. Both teams know that this game is to win the East and earn the chance to play for the SECCG. I think that is motivation enough. 5. Regardless of how it turns out, it's exciting for Vol fans that our season matters again. It has been a long time. Most season, I felt like the "Auburn" guy in the SEC Shorts therapists sketch last week. Therapist, "You seem to be handling the disappointment really well." Auburn, "that's because I've been dead inside since week 3. College football can't hurt me if I don't care." That has been the Vols fans' life for the last 16 years.
One last observation, for tonight anyway. If you could add Hendon Hooker to Stetson Bennett IV, you are flirting with eligibility for AARP membership. :-)
I think the loser of this game has to hope that the winner beats Bama to get to the CFP. If Bama gets to the SECCG and wins, then I think the loser of this game is out. Don't get me wrong - if Clemson and TCU lose before the end of the season, I think 3 SEC teams in the CFP would be hilarious, just to watch the reactions of everyone else.
We didn't play regularly until the East/West divisions, but there are so many great memories in this rivalry (I hope the Vols win some to make it a rivalry again). My earliest memory was the coming out party for Herschel Walker (who, inexplicably was 3rd string until the first 2 guys were injured - probably a typical Freshman thing - not knowing pass protection blocking). Bill Bates, our safety that had a great NFL career with the Cowboys recalled that he was in perfect position to decleat Herschel. He pointed to his chest, saying before he knew it, there was a footprint here and a footprint there, and Walker ran right over him. There was the hobnail boot. There was the Georgia bomb and the Vols Hail Mary. Until the last several years, this was a great series. I think the Dawgs are a better overall team, but I think the Vols have more than a puncher's chance to win. I'm really not as concerned about our offense against the Dawgs defense, not that I don't totally respect the Dawgs defense. I think the bigger issue is if our defense can hold Georgia under 40. If not, our offense has to score almost every possession. Not impossible, but that leaves no margin for error. I think the key to our offense is if we can run against Georgia. Last year, Georgia shut our running game down. I think we need to rush for over 120 yards to have a shot.