Overall record: 17-6
- Appalachian State Mountaineers: 2019 (12-1)
- Missouri Tigers: 2020 to present (5-5)
It’s common knowledge last year that Tennessee football was lucky to play the Missouri Tigers when it did. Mizzou was still figuring out Eli Drinkwitz’s offense, and the Vols were able to take advantage with a 35-12 victory. UT would then lose six straight and seven of eight, while Mizzou rebounded to win five of six in the middle of the year.
Given that success, expectations are high for Drinkwitz, who is a creative offensive mind just like Josh Heupel. Also, just like Heupel, Drinkwitz has a conference championship at the Group of Five level. Don’t forget he won the Sun Belt Championship with the Appalachian State Mountaineers back in 2019, so he is a proven success.
One of the reasons the Vols hired Heupel as head coach was to stay ahead of the SEC curve offensively, but whether or not they’ll be able to do that is questionable given the fact that Drinkwitz is in the East right now as well. He’s more ahead of the curve than anybody.
A year ago, nobody would have thought that by this time Mizzou on the road would be a likely loss for the Vols heading into the season. However, that’s where things are, and Drinkwitz being at the helm is the main reason for it.