3 takeaways from Tennessee's dominant win over Vanderbilt
Tennessee left no doubt against Vanderbilt Saturday night after the Commodores kept things close through the first quarter of play.
The Vols went up early, scoring on the opening drive, and Vanderbilt answered on its first offensive drive. After the Commodores’ first-quarter touchdown, it was all Tennessee.
Tennessee needed a dominant win to give the fans something to be happy about heading into bowl season, and the Vols did just that.
Here are a few takeaways from the game.
Joe Milton goes out with a bang
Joe Milton faced plenty of criticism over the past few weeks from the Volunteer faithful. Undeserving, perhaps, but expected from a fan base that wants nothing but the best.
Milton made sure he won Tennessee fans over during his final game in Neyland Stadium.
The veteran quarterback had 383 passing yards and 4 passing touchdowns, along with a pair of touchdowns on the ground. His 6 touchdowns were the most accounted for by a quarterback since Jonathan Crompton’s 6 touchdowns in 2009.
Milton was dialed in the entire game and he made sure his final game in Neyland was one to remember. It’s not clear whether Milton will play in Tennessee’s bowl game, but he had an outstanding final performance if it is his last.
Tempers flare before halftime
It wouldn’t be rivalry week without a few pushes and shoves, but there were more than just a few in the final minutes of the first half.
As Vanderbilt was looking to cut into the lead, a few punches were thrown after the play. On the next snap, the referees didn’t call a delay of game on Vanderbilt, and Tennessee’s defensive line made a big hit on AJ Swann. Clark Lea quickly gave the referees an earful, and a brawl ensued with both benches clearing.
A closer look at the brawl between Tennessee and Vanderbilt ?
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Lea picked up an unsportsmanlike call on the play.
The brawl was an unfortunate distraction in the game, but Tennessee quickly silenced Vanderbilt with a touchdown on the next drive.
Jaylen Wright reaches impressive feat
Jaylen Wright had a relatively quiet day against Vanderbilt with just 75 yards, but he reached a milestone on the game.
Wright passed the 1,000 rushing-yard mark on the season, making him the first Vol to reach 1,000 rushing yards in a single season since Jaylen Hurd did it in 2015.
But what’s even more impressive is that he did in significantly fewer carries. Hurd had 277 carries in 2015, and Wright reached 1,000 yards on just 137 carries. The impressive mark is a testament to how special Wright has been for Tennessee.