8. Georgia Bulldogs
The Georgia Bulldogs join the Florida Gators and the Alabama Crimson Tide as automatic losses on our list for Tennessee football this year. You can write off all three of those games, which is why they are at the bottom of importance just above the Chattanooga Mocs and the Georgia State Panthers.
We only have these three ahead of those two because of the nature of them being SEC and rivalry games. However, Georgia is ahead of Florida and Alabama on our list in terms of importance because, if UT were to pull off an upset of the century type game this year, it would be at home against Kirby Smart’s team.
Jeremy Pruitt’s unit played the Dawgs tough last year for a little while, and he now has former UGA offensive coordinator Jim Chaney on his side. Add in the fact that Georgia and the Vols will be coming off a bye, and there may be just enough for an upset.
UGA’s most recent game will have been against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish, and UT’s will have been against the Florida Gators. So this first Saturday in October showdown could bring a lot of intriguing storylines.
That level of chance combined with this game being in Knoxville and still being an SEC East matchup makes this game ever so slightly more important than Alabama and Florida. It’s still an automatic loss, but no probability is at zero percent.
And the probability for the Vols to win this game, while almost nonexistent, is slightly higher than Florida and Alabama. So they should give a bit more focus to this game, because if they do pull off the upset, it would be a huge gainer for them.