The Tennessee football Volunteers have had legendary stops. Here are five.
Game-winning drives are always epic. But when it comes to schools like Tennessee football, defensive stops are just as memorable. The Vols have had their backs against the wall numerous times, and it was their defense that came through.
Sometimes, the stop was so impressive that it’s memorable despite not coming on the final drive. Whether it’s through a forced turnover or just a turnover on downs, Rocky Top has won some game thanks to epic stops with their backs against the wall.
In fact, Tennessee football may not win its national title in 1998, its SEC title in 1985 or other legendary games without such defensive stands. They are as much a part of this program’s history as anything.
Because of that, it’s time to give a bit of love to such stands. In this post, we’re going to rank the Vols most memorable stops of all time to help them secure wins. These stops were so improbable that they became legendary.
To make this list, it actually has to be a defensive stop, not a special teams stops. For instance, the blocked field goal in the Miracle at South Bend in 1991 or the missed field goal by the Florida Gators in 1998 don’t count. The defense itself actually had to come up with a stop.
Also, not any stop can qualify. For instance, the Vols interception against the Florida State Seminoles on their last offensive possession in the national championship game was not a difficult stop. FSU had to go the length of the field in two minutes. It has to be an impressive stop.
When the stop came, the defense had to have its backs against the wall to the point that it was almost certain the Vols would allow a score. However, a spectacular play or a series of spectacular plays prevented that from happening. In the process, UT secured a win that went down in the history books.
So which games are we talking about? How tough did Rocky Top get on the defensive side of the ball? Let’s break all of that down here. These are Tennessee football’s five most memorable stops in school history.