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Tennessee Vols' statistical rankings after Oklahoma

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An elite opponent leads to a major recalibration in the Vols' national statistical rankings.

Not the night's only highlight, but one of the best.
Not the night's only highlight, but one of the best.
Brett Deering

As you would expect, playing a Top 5 team after a couple of weeks against middle-of-the-road competition has effected a widespread recalibration of the Tennessee Volunteers' statistical rankings. Let's see how things have shaken out.

What Tennessee is doing well

Now that we have an elite opponent in the mix, we can begin to really feel good about some of this green. To take the Rugrats on a plane for the first time to a place like Oklahoma against a national title contender and still be Top 10 in Fewest Penalty Yards Per Game and Fewest Penalties Per Game is quite remarkable. And the fact that Third Down for What made the trip as well is a testament to either the degree of earworminess of the song or that the defense is just playing really on third down. The team's also still good on both sides of the Fumbles Coin, which is great news. Punt Return Defense joins the party this week. He's a reall wallflower, that one. You don't even know when he's there, but you miss him when he's gone.

The Vols fell out of the Top 30 in 11 different categories this week. Those categories all over the board, which suggests that it's just a general overall recalibration. It's probably more who they really are at this point and who they will be against SEC competition.

Categories in which Tennessee is in the Top 30
Category 2011 2012 2013

Utah St.

Ark. St. OK
Fewest Penalty Yards Per Game 51 67 21 43 11 3
3rd Down Conversion Pct Defense 57 50 91 16 13 3
Fewest Penalties Per Game 56 92 26 56 15 6
Fumbles Recovered 71 113 29 19 22 22
Fumbles Lost 6 28 24 1 1 23
Punt Return Defense 85 67 92 85 60 27
Time of Possession 37 116 91 44 22 27
New Arrivals: Punt Return Defense, aaaaannd . . . that's it.
The Dearly Departed: Turnovers Gained, Punt Returns, Team Passing Efficiency Defense, Turnover Margin, Team Tackles for Loss, Scoring Defense, First Downs Defense, Total Defense, Passing Yards Allowed, Turnovers Lost, and 3rd Down Conversion Percentage.

Where Tennessee needs major improvement

Where there was only one entry in this chart each of the last two weeks, there are now eight. This results in a Must Get Done Now List of (1) Get the run game going; (2) Step up efforts to find the deep passing game; and (3) Figure out how to strengthen the offensive line or at least mitigate its weaknesses.

Categories in which Tennessee is in the Bottom 30
Category 2011 2012 2013 Utah St. Ark. St. OK
Total Offense 104 18 102 79 81 93
Rushing Offense 116 61 44 91 88 94
Tackles for Loss Allowed 38 9 37 48 41 98
Team Passing Efficiency 69 31 111 42 61 98
Red Zone Defense 47 115 11 1 88 101
Passing Yards per Completion 115 87 93 103
4th Down Conversion Pct 91 80 76 62 89 106
Sacks Allowed 40 5 21 65 66 109
Recently checked in to Hell's Hotel: Total Offense, Tackles for Loss Allowed, Team Passing Efficiency, Red Zone Defense, 4th Down Conversion Percentage, Sacks Allowed.
Back in the Doghouse: Rushing Offense.
Just Escaped: None.

THE BIG FAT MIDDLE

And here's the rest, for tracking purposes.

Categories in which Tennessee is in the Middle of the Rankings
Category 2011 2012 2013 Utah St. Ark. St. OK
4th Down Conversion Pct Defense 48 86 117 1 48 31
Turnovers Gained 91 95 35 11 29 31
Passes Intercepted 86 56 40 10 37 33
Punt Returns 61 22 51 84 14 34
Team Passing Efficiency Defense 58 21 25 35
Turnover Margin 59 88 54 6 19 35
Team Tackles for Loss 67 48 90 47 21 36
Scoring Defense 36 104 78 10 21 38
First Downs Defense 18 86 45 14 21 41
Total Defense 28 107 83 22 29 42
Passing Yards Allowed 12 111 27 31 30 45
Rushing Defense 69 85 100 39 49 48
Turnovers Lost 20 58 87 1 13 52
First Downs Offense 98 20 101 47 48 53
Red Zone Offense 58 29 100 1 44 55
3rd Down Conversion Pct 56 81 92 57 8 63
Kickoff Returns 41 80 20 84 68 63
Passing Offense 50 15 109 44 54 68
Kickoff Return Defense 7 47 118 62 76 73
Passes Had Intercepted 63 83 107 1 34 76
Net Punting 104 52 28 70 76 78
Team Sacks 100 98 99 73 58 78
Scoring Offense 106 22 94 41 48 83

Players in the Top 30

Player Stat 2011 2012 2013 Utah St. Ark. St. OK
Cameron Sutton Fumbles Recovered 11 14
Todd Kelly, Jr. Fumbles Recovered 4 14
Jalen Reevesd-Maybin Fumbles Recovered 14
Justin Worley Completions Per Game 22 29
Todd Kelly, Jr. Fumbles Recovered 11
Justin Worley Passing TDs 15
Justin Worley Points Responsible For 16
Marquez North Receiving TDs 17
Justin Worley Points Responsible For Per Game 18
A.J. Johnson Passed Defended 17 20
Aaron Medley Field Goals Per Game 26
Owen Williams Sacks 29
A.J. Johnson Forced Fumbles 3
A.J. Johnson Interceptions 4
Cameron Sutton Interceptions 4
Justin Worley Completion Percentage 16
Dontavis Sapp Fumbles Recovered 9
Michael Palardy Punting 11
Devaun Swafford Punt Return TDs 14
A.J. Johnson Tackles 4
Byron Moore Interceptions 13
Cordarrelle Patterson Kickoff Returns 14
Cordarrelle Patterson All-Purpose Runners 16
Tyler Bray Total Offense 19
Justin Hunter Receiving Yards Per Game 22
Devrin Young Punt Returns 28
Tyler Bray Passing Efficiency 29
Austin Johnson Interceptions 23