Tennessee football Smokey points: Top five Vols in 23-22 Gator Bowl win

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Lots of key players came through in Tennessee football’s victory over the Indiana Hoosiers. Here is a look at the top Volunteers performers.

It looks like Tennessee football will be just fine for the future. The Vols relied on lots of young talent to beat the Indiana Hoosiers 23-22 in the Gator Bowl Thursday night, and that young talent is not going anywhere.

Freshmen stepped up all over the field, including one who was key in the comeback down the stretch after the Vols were down 22-9. Rocky Top’s future under Jeremy Pruitt heading into this decade is looking great as a result.

Looking back on this game overall, the veterans did their job. But many of the key players for Tennessee football were guys who will be back next year, and they gave everybody a preview of what they can do.

As we get set to hand out our final Smokey points of the season, you’ll notice that the Vols who earned helmet stickers in this one are disproportionately underclassmen. It was actually difficult to name five guys because outside of a couple of specific standouts, everybody for the most part just had a solid game.

However, we were able to break things down enough to find a few specific standout performers. One player clearly made splash plays above all others, two more made a few on defense, a third was simply all over the field, and the last was a story of overcoming obstacles like he has all season long.

Everybody deserves credit for their fight in this game, though. It was representative of the mental toughness Pruitt has clearly instilled in this team over the years. To see it on display like that bodes extremely well for the future.

So which players get the most credit? Who delivered the win? It’s time to go ahead and look at that for the final time this season. These are our Tennessee football Smokey points following the Vols 23-22 Gator Bowl win over the Indiana Hoosiers.

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