Good Ole Rocky Top…
Well, not really. Times have just been tough lately in Rocky Top, and the Tennessee Volunteers football program is adjusting to its third head football coach in five years. Tennessee has some players at the skill positions on offense, but they have yet to find a quarterback capable of getting them the football since Tyler Bray left at the end of last season.
Butch Jones is tasked with being the architect of the rebuilding project in Knoxville. The new head coach has his Volunteers at 3-2 after the Vols held off the South Alabama Jaguars to win 31-24 in week five. Tennessee’s next three opponents are Georgia, South Carolina, and Alabama. Welcome to the SEC, coach.
Aaron Murray, Conquering Hero
Georgia quarterback Aaron Murray’s college football career has been chalked full of twists and turns. Rewritten record books, legacy defining moments, and possibly a championship await Murray at the end of his journey in Athens. The fifth-year senior will need help from the defense, as well as a healthy Todd Gurley to accomplish all of his goals, but the victory over LSU had to vindicate Aaron Murray’s decision to come back to UGA for his final year of eligibility.
The Georgia Bulldogs: Avoiding a Massive Letdown
The last time Georgia won a regular season home game at home against LSU in 2004, they followed it up with a loss to Tennessee the very next week. There is nothing to indicate that history is going to repeat itself. Unless the Dawgs decide to roll over and play dead, the longest thing about the trip to Knoxville will be the ride down there.
Tennessee does not have the talent on either side of the ball to compete with Georgia for four quarters. One of Tennessee’s biggest assets is their offensive line, but it is a work in progress according to what coach Butch Jones told the Times Free Press, “I need more in terms of a level of physicality and finishing plays. We’re working on that each and every day.”
Taming the Tigers Altered the Course of Georgia’s Football Season
Georgia’s four sacks on LSU QB Zack Mettenberger cast a silver lining on a poor defensive performance against the Tigers. The Dawg secondary must feed off of the pressure created by the front seven, such as outside linebacker Floyd, to help create opportunities to stop the opposition.
No opponent should be taken lightly based on how big their reconstruction job is. However, The University of Tennessee has some work to do before they can be competitive in the Southeastern Conference again. Rocky Top Talk points out that coach Butch Jones is doing well in recruiting. His new job is a marathon, not a sprint.
Prediction: Tennessee will play well early on defense, but the Dawgs’ veteran offense will settle down and take the crowd out of it early in the second half. The Volunteers do not have enough offense to chase down the Dawgs even with home field advantage. Georgia 34, Tennessee 17.