It’s been a big week for the Tennessee football program.
On Monday the much anticipated “Battle at Bristol,” was announced, and confirmed for September 10, 2016. Also, for the fourth time in seven games this season the Volunteers will appear on national television when they host the No. 11 South Carolina Gamecocks at noon on ESPN. They’ll also appear on CBS for their SEC game of the week when they travel to Alabama next Saturday, October 26. That game will kickoff at 3:30 p.m.
When it comes to the rebuilding task first-year head coach Butch Jones has been faced with he really can’t ask for much more. As it stands now he has enlisted the No. 2 recruiting class for 2014 according to Rivals with 26 commitments, and still has room to go after more. Jones said Monday at the Battle at Bristol announcement that the program is looking at playing more neutral site games in the future that would be in pristine areas for recruiting.
From the Times Free Press
Around the University of Tennessee campus, if perhaps nowhere else, gray’s anatomy dramatically changed body types 11 days ago. Long perceived to reflect sadness, depression, doom and gloom, the seemingly dark color “smokey gray” suddenly stood for something far more positive and inspirational. It elected to forever more — at least on football Saturdays in the Volunteer State — represent hope.
That it arrived at this decision through bitter defeat, its debut on UT uniforms permanently linked to a 34-31 overtime loss to Georgia, only heightens the fascination with its power and influence. A single example: The game just ended, the Volunteers trudging out of Neyland Stadium with their heads down, their smokey gray uniforms failing to deliver the upset, the Big Orange Nation rose to its feet to deliver a standing ovation.
From NBC Sports
As expected, there are quite a few zeros involved in the decision to hold a football game at a NASCAR racetrack.
According to that contract, each school will receive an allotment of 40,000 tickets. If each school sells all of its allotted tickets, they would receive $4 million apiece. The guarantee drops to $3.75 million if 32,500 tickets are sold, $3.5 million for 25,000 sold.
From Saturday Blitz
Mid Season Report Card
When talk around the program focuses on whether or not to take the redshirts off talented freshmen quarterbacks, it typically means the position is horribly unsettled. QB Justin Worley, after getting benched, took a strong grip on the position while QB2 Nathan Peterman recovers from a hand injury. Worley misses open receivers and makes poor reads – which is why the Vols are 13th in passing offense – but has improved and, the last time out against Georgia, at least, isn’t making crippling mistakes.
Rest of offense: B+
Tennessee boasts one of the best offensive lines in the conference, if not the nation. That line creates running room for RBs Rajion Neal and Marlin Lane, who have combined for at least 100 yards five times this season. A young group of receivers needs seasoning, but shows promise. Despite an effective run game, the Vols rank 11th in total offense.