Best pre-game glad-handing. Lane Kiffin, schmoozing the officials just before kickoff. Yeah, we got some calls.
Best Jedi Mind Trick. Lane Kiffin, who, early in the game, spotted the ball for the official several yards beyond where it should have been spotted. The official accepted the assistance and gave the Vols a first down.
Best, most candid response. Lane Kiffin on his TV show, who said while watching Georgia's kickoff return for a touchdown, "I'm out of answers. There's Eric Berry. Nu'Keese, our fastest guy on the team. Our starting corner. I don't know. We'll figure something out." When asked about it later in the show by a write-in fan, Kiffin said he was taking suggestions. Hooper?
Best impersonation of a flying squirrel. Denarius Moore, who took a Jonathan Crompton pass, spun out of the reach of two would-be tacklers, raced down the sideline, launched into the air at the five yard line as he was hit by another defender, and deployed his patagium to glide through the air while stretching the football out with his right hand to touch the invisible corner of the end zone for a touchdown.
Most humorous comment. Lane Kiffin, again on his TV show, who said "My man the robot there," describing true freshman Zach Rogers's short-strided run after a catch for a nice gain. It's true. Rogers looked like he was doing the robot dance on fast forward.
Best block. Kevin Cooper on Montario Hardesty's 39-yard touchdown run. Cooper was through the hole already when he realized the strongside linebacker was threatening to catch Hardesty from behind, so Cooper peeled off and chipped the defender giving Hardesty just enough room to get through the hole and into the open.
Best We've Been Waiting for That. Gerald Jones, who had gotten behind the safeties on a wonderful double move the team had been setting up the entire game, and who hauled in a well thrown deep ball from Crompton for a 51-yard touchdown.
Best icing on the WIN cake. Seeing Josh McNeil, who ignored the knees telling him he will never play football again, on the field late in the game and mixing it up with a defender.
Best stat. Georgia's offense never made it past the Tennessee 34-yard line and managed a mere three points on a 52-yard field goal.
Best dress rehearsal. Eric Berry, who raced 46 yards after grabbing an air-borne fumble caused by Art Evans's jarring hit on a receiver. For a fleeting minute, everyone thought that it had been an interception, which would have given Berry the college football record for interception return yards.
Most concise. Lane Kiffin, who, when asked about the post-game Gatorade bath (his first, by the way), said simply, "Cold."
Top 5 plays (according to the Lane Kiffin Show):
5. Crompton to Marsalis Teague for a five-yard touchdown. Crompton said Teague was his third read, by the way.
4. Moore's flying squirrel TD. Moore said he was the second read.
3. The Williams, Williams, and Walker team effort interception mentioned above. Walker called Gerald Williams "Teasy" on the TV show, and I've no idea why. Anyone?
2. Hardesty's 39-yard TD. Call this "Team effort, offense," as Hardesty said it was an outside zone, but Cooper "made a great read," cut it back, and Hardesty simply followed.
1. Crompton to Jones 51-yard TD.
Best continuation of the chimera theme. The Lane Kiffin show is now half Lane Kiffin and half one of the Chimera heads. It's a different guy each week (James Cregg was the lucky guy yesterday). Consider that new format another nice move by Kiffin, getting each of his guys some face time and public appearance practice reps for their resumes.
Player of the game, offense. Crompton, who went 20-27 for 310 yards, four TDs, and one interception. Good for him. Seriously.
Player of the game, defense. This is a close one, actually, as the defense was fantastic all day, and it was a true team effort. Rico McCoy had nine tackles, a pass breakup, and a QBH, Savion Frazier had seven tackles and a TFL, and Dennis Rogan had six tackles, a TFL, and an interception, but Eric Berry, who only had five tackles, also had that terrific 46-yard fumble return and two pass breakups, so I'm going with him.