10. 2013-14 Sweet Sixteen vs. Michigan
The 2013-14 season marked a couple of seasons removed from the most recent expansion to the NCAA Tournament. IN 2011, the tournament was expanded to 68 teams, which involved “play in games.”
That season, the Vols drew a number 11 seed and had to play into the Round of 64. The first games was an overtime thriller against the Iowa Hawkeyes where Tennessee’s big three (Jarnell Stokes, Josh Richardson, and Jordan McRae) all scored over 15 points in a Vols win.
Tennessee drew UMass which was widely agreed upon as the weakest 6th seed. The Vols cruised into the second round with a 19 point win.
The lucky trend continued with the number 14th seeded Mercer Bears knocked off the Duke Blue Devils in the first round. Tennessee sailed into a Sweet Sixteen matchup with a 20 point win.
As luck always does, it runs out, and in the game against Michigan it ran out at the last seconds.
The Wolverines led most of the game, but the scrappy Vols were on a 15 points comeback and was only trailing by one point with six seconds to go in the game.
Then came one of the worst calls in the history of calls. The ball gets tossed into Stokes, and as he is heading to the rim with a slightly lowered shoulder, Jordan Morgan falls to the floor like he has been hit by a wrecking ball.
Offensive foul, ball game. Hopefully, by now I’ve proved to be an unbiased Tennessee fan, but how in the world can a ref make that call?
I still think about how that team faced adversity all season long and to be frank; they weren’t all that good. Yet, they still had a chance to reach an Elite Eight.
If you can’t tell, I’m still a little snappy and remember it like it was yesterday. I would bet to say most Tennessee fans do as well.