Someone just happened to leave a Tennessee pocket schedule on my desk yesterday. After looking it over, and over, and over, I decided to make a few predictions and see if I have half the wizadry of bobo_the_vol. So, here they are, complete with short analysis, for mass consumption!
September 5, 2009 - Western Kentucky at Tennessee - 38-3 Tennessee - 1-0
Tennessee opens with a solid victory over a far inferior opponent, but looks a little shaky as the offense starts to come together. Crompton has a decent performance, but Montario Hardesty runs for 100, and Bryce Brown and David Oku combine for another 125 total yards.
September 12, 2009 - UCLA at Tennessee - 50-7 Tennessee - 2-0
Lane Kiffin is HIGHLY upset with a less than stellar offensive performance in the first game and refuses to call off the dogs against an old PAC-10 rival. It's the defense that steals the show, however, as Eric Berry picks off two passes and returns one for a TD.
September 19, 2009 - Tennessee at Florida - 24-13 Florida - 2-1
Jonathan Crompton is unable to produce, and the Hardesty, Brown, Oku, Poole stable of HB's combines for nearly all of Tennessee's offense. The defense keeps it close in what most Tennessee fans accept as a moral victory. Lane Kiffin does not, and the team is seen running up I-75 the last 50 miles from Athens to Knoxville.
September 26, 2009 - Ohio at Tennessee - 59-0 Tennessee - 3-1
Tennessee comes out strong against an outgunned opponent and scores 35 in the first half. Eric Berry gets another two picks and brings his season total to six. Jonathan Crompton has a career day throwing the ball, but it pales in comparison to most "career" performances.
October 3, 2009 - Auburn at Tennessee - 31-7 Tennessee - 4-1
Kiffin tells Chizik he should open his mouth a little bit more, and Eddie Gran makes the Auburn AD wish he had ponied up the cash to keep him. Bryce Brown breaks out for 150 all-purpose yards as Hardesty is out with a mysterious leg injury....again.
October 10, 2009 - Georgia at Tennessee - 34-10 Tennessee - 5-1
Georgia fans realize how much they miss Stafford and Moreno as Eric Berry provides free concussions to three Georgia HB's and the defense scores thrice to steal the show. Including another blocked punt.
October 24, 2009 - Tennessee at Alabama - 38-17 Alabama - 5-2
Tennessee is just outgunned in this one as Alabama players are using textbooks for body armor and are impervious to even Eric Berry's vicious hits. Score one for Saban, but Bryce Brown picks up another 100 on the ground.
October 31, 2009 - South Carolina at Tennessee - 41-14 Tennessee - 6-2
Steve Spurrier fills Neyland's lost and found with visors as his team commits 18 penalties and throws 4 picks. By 4 different QB's.
November 7, 2009 - Memphis at Tennessee - 56-0 Tennessee - 7-2
Countless Memphis fans demand entry to Thompson-Boling to see "the game", but an orange filled Neyland sees Bryce Brown get his first 200-yard rushing game as Hardesty is helped to the locker room with numerous injuries to both lower legs after the first play. Even though he's not on the kickoff team.
November 14, 2009 - Tennessee at Ole Miss - 13-7 Tennessee - 8-2
Two second-half field goals are the difference in a struggle between Monte Kiffin's defense and Jevon Snead and a struggle between Jonathan Crompton and his receivers not having hands on their shins. The team is once again seen running up I-75.
November 21, 2009 - Vanderbilt at Tennessee - 42-17 Tennessee - 9-2
The offense recovers from their shoddy play at Ole Miss, but the defense is still worn out and gives up 17 to the pesky in-state rival.
November 28, 2009 - Tennessee at Kentucky - 31-0 Tennessee - 10-2
Bryce Brown shows again why he was the number one recruit over a hapless Kentucky squad. The win streak continues, but not many people see the game as the NCAA investigation of Calipari took up all the parking spots.
December 5, 2009 - SEC Championship Game
Is played between Florida and Alabama in an instant classic. Alabama wins and ruins Tebow's chance at a third MNC. Alabama doesn't make it either, however, thanks to two losses of their own.
And there you have it! My fearless predictions that will certainly draw ire for the next few months, but it was fun, and I hope I'm as good as Bobo!
Note: No Montario Hardesty's were injured in the typing of this article. Comments regarding Montario Hardesty's past injury problems were all meant in jest as I seriously wish him his first full healthy season.