Best cheer. "One more year!" shouted by UT fans imploring record-setting Tennessee wide receiver Robert Meachem to stay for his senior year rather than opt for the NFL draft.
Best Twelve Days of Christmas Gift. Five sweat proof suits for Tennessee basketball coach Bruce Pearl. The Pride of the Southland Marching Band's annual rendition of the Twelve Days of Christmas featured such desires as a pay raise for offensive coordinator David Cutcliffe and a Super Bowl for Peyton Manning. The substitution of "five sweat proof suits" for "five golden rings" is a reference to Pearl's game-long impersonation of a soaker hose last February while coaching his team to one of two victories over the eventual national champion Florida Gators.
Best streak. Twenty-two years. The Kentucky Wildcats have not beaten the Vols since 1984.
Best recovery, I. LaMarcus Coker, who "took a little nap" after getting clocked by Kentucky defender Braxton Kelley but returned. Good thing, too, as he accounted for 90 of UT's 96 rushing yards and was the team's second-leading receiver.
Best recovery, II. Randy Sanders, who fell on his sword after the South Carolina loss last year and, by grooming QB Andre Woodson into a No. 16 national passing efficiency ranking, has contributed greatly to the improvement of a perennially poor Kentucky football team.
Worst stat. The SEC's second best passing offense scored a whopping 17 points against the nation's worst defense. Ugh.
Best stat. Tennessee converted both of its fourth down attempts, while Kentucky failed on all three of its fourth down tries.
Best defensive series. With time winding down and the 'Cats down by five, Kentucky found itself sitting pretty with a first and goal. Chavis' defense bowed up and stopped running back Rafael Little for a three-yard gain. Kentucky then shot itself in the foot with a delay of game penalty. On second and goal from the eight, Marvin Mitchell and Turk McBride teamed up to stop Little for a too-little two-yard gain. On third and goal, Rico McCoy broke up a pass intended for Dicky Lyons. On fourth and goal, Mitchell pressured QB Andre Woodson, who overthrew Lyons in the end zone.
Best switcheroo. Senior cornerback Jonathan Wade, who chucked his regular No. 4 and donned No. 29 in honor of fallen teammate Inky Johnson.
Best game recap. Robert Meachem: "We won."
Highest praise. UT defensive tackle coach Dan Brooks on Turk McBride: "Turk McBride is one of the greatest young people that has ever played here in my 13 years. He loves this program and this football team. . . . He's just one of the most unselfish people we've ever had play for us."
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