Tennessee captured its first conference win of the season on Saturday by beating Mississippi State 20-10 in Neyland Stadium.

Following a rough start to the season, Tennessee has found some serious momentum with true freshman Brian Maurer under center. Maurer started against Mississippi State and was moving Tennessee’s offense up and down the field but he did have two costly red zone interceptions that kept the Bulldogs in the game.

Despite his turnovers, Maurer remains the best option Tennessee has under center which made his injury sustained in the second quarter all the more concerning for Vol Nation.

After the game, Jeremy Pruitt was asked to share the latest status update on Maurer, who was injured during a scramble.

“He has to go through the protocol – for concussion,”  Pruitt said regarding Maurer.

Maurer finished the game completing four of seven passes for 61 yards with two interceptions. With Maurer out for the game, Tennessee turned the offense back over to Jarrett Guaratano. The Volunteer coach praised the junior’s performance after he came off the bench to help close out the game for the Vols.

“He managed the offense, we ran the ball some there and made a good play on the RPO and Tyler Byrd made a great play,” Pruitt said.

Guarantano finished the game completing six of seven passes for 106 yards and a touchdown.

Finally, on the play of his defense, which was outstanding for much of the game, Pruitt offered up these comments.

“Played hard, had some turnovers,” the Tennessee coach said after the game. “Unfortunately, we lost a couple of players in this game but the guys we put in were resilient, they found a way and our offense done a nice job there, got the ball with eight minutes to go and put a great drive together to score there are the end.”

One note for next week from this game, freshman linebacker Henry To’o To’o was called for targeting in the second half and was ejected. He will now miss the first half of next week’s Alabama game.

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