Tennessee Football faced its first good team on Saturday and was not ready to face one of college football’s elite teams, but they’ll be better for it.
Every year Tennessee football has hype surrounding the program. Whether that hype is built up by fans, UT social media accounts, or players, there’s always hype on some level. That is no different this year, especially with the Vols starting the season 2-0.
Tennessee played two fairly easy games to open the season before facing Georgia and took care of business in both games. Their confidence was high without facing solid talent, so going into Georgia, they might’ve expected the win to be a bit easier than it would actually be. No win is easy, but when you’re on the high that the Vols were on, it can seem a bit easier than usual.
Through the first half, the Vols looked like the team that they were hoping to be. They were the team that had the longest active win streak in college football. Everything changed for the Vols in the second half.
Just about everything started falling apart, whether it started falling apart on the first drive of the half or in the fourth quarter.
It’s a loss that Tennessee can learn from. They know that they have the overall talent to compete with Georgia, so they just have to figure out how to close. The offense was non-existent in the second half, so the offense has to figure out how to put a drive together in all four quarters against elite defenses. Or at the very least, gain a couple of first downs every drive.
Going three and out most drives is going to kill your defense, and that’s exactly what happened in the second half.
On a positive note, though, the Vols can take what they’ve learned from this loss and apply it to the games remaining on the schedule. It doesn’t look like this Saturday’s game against Kentucky will be an easy win, so they’re going to have to learn quickly.
As negative as I’ve been about the game on Saturday, I’m still proud of how they played. I don’t think anyone expected Tennessee to hang around for three quarters and have the lead going into halftime.
We know that the Vols aren’t going to be a top-ten team this season as much as we want them to be, but with Jeremy Pruitt leading the Volunteers, our time in the top-ten is coming. It’s only a matter of time.