Recalibrating the Vols after the South Carolina Game
Here's what the Vols' former opponents did this weekend:
- Bowling Green beat Ohio, 62-24. They are 7-2, their only losses to us and a surprisingly good Memphis team that just lost its first game this week.
- Oklahoma dominated Iowa State, 52-16. One fluky loss to rival Texas. Otherwise, no one but Tennessee has given them a game.
- Florida struggled against Vandy, but beat them 9-7. They have one loss, to a very good LSU team.
- Arkansas beat a ranked Ole Miss team in overtime, 53-52.
- Georgia got back on track against Kentucky, beating them 27-3.
- Alabama beat #2 LSU fairly easily, 30-16.
- As I said before, Kentucky lost to Georgia.
Most of that, with the exception of Florida struggling against Vanderbilt, makes me feel pretty good about the Vols' resume to date.
The Tennessee-South Carolina game, though, makes me much more nervous the rest of the way for the Vols. I am completely confused about how the offense can look like perfection for two drives and then vanish into thin air. All season, we've hypothesized explanations for this phenomonon -- the coaching staff goes conservative too early, the team can't adjust to the opponent's adjustments -- but I don't know anymore. It could be something else entirely. Focus? An offensive line that gets worn out early?
Anyway, I still feel the team is awesome at full strength and focus and should win the rest of its games, but I'm not nearly as confident after the Gamecocks game that the team will consistently be the team it should be at any given moment. I'm moving two of the three remaining opponents back toward the middle just because of the uncertainty.
Recalibrating the Vols' remaining opponents
So what about Tennessee's future opponents? First, the chart. Details on each are below.
|9||Georgia (W; 38-31)||Alabama (L; 19-14)|
|14||Oklahoma (L; 31-24 2OT)|
|17||Missouri||Florida||Florida (L; 28-27)|
|19||South Carolina||South Carolina||Arkansas (L; 24-20)|
|24||Vanderbilt||Vanderbilt||Vanderbilit||South Carolina||South Carolina||Vanderbilt||Missouri||Missouri|
|25||Bowling Green (W; 59-30)||South Carolina||Vanderbilt||Missouri|
|26||South Carolina||South Carolina (W; 27-24)|
|28||North Texas||North Texas||North Texas||North Texas||North Texas|
|29||Western Carolina||Western Carolina||
|North Texas||North Texas||North Texas||North Texas||North Texas||North Texas|
11/14/15: North Texas (1-8, 1-5 C-USA, NR)
- W1: DNP.
- W2: Lost to SMU, 31-13.
- W3: Lost to Rice, 38-24.
- W4: Lost to Iowa, 62-16.
- W5: Lost to Southern Miss, 49-14.
- W6: Lost to Portland State, 66-7.
- W7: Lost to Western Kentucky, 55-28.
- W8: Lost to Marshall, 30-13.
- W9: Beat UTSA, 30-23.
- W10: Lost to LA Tech, 56-13.
|Sat, Nov 14||@ #25 Tennessee|
|Sat, Nov 21||@ Mid Tennessee|
|Sat, Nov 28||vs UTEP|
Chances of a Vols win (on a scale from 5-30): I just ran the comparison chart for Thursday's statsy preview. Spoiler alert: This is the worst team we've played this season in every category except Rushing Offense, in which they're two yards better per game than Bowling Green. Yeah. 29.
|PREDICTIONS - NORTH TEXAS|
11/21/15: at Missouri (4-5, 1-5 SEC, NR)
- W1: Beat SE Missouri State, 34-3.
- W2: Beat Arkansas State, 27-20.
- W3: Beat UConn, 9-6.
- W4: Lost to Kentucky, 21-13.
- W5: Beat South Carolina, 24-10.
- W6: Lost to Florida, 21-3.
- W7: Lost to Georgia, 9-6.
- W8: Lost to Vanderbilt, 10-3.
- W9: Bye
- W10: Lost to #20 Mississippi State, 31-13.
|Sat, Nov 14||vs BYU*|
|Sat, Nov 21||vs Tennessee|
|Fri, Nov 27||@ Arkansas|
Chances of a Vols win (on a scale from 5-30): The offense did score a touchdown this week, but I think they're still just a good defensive team with a suspect offense. I am moving them a spot, though, based on the Vols' inconsistency.
|PREDICTIONS - MISSOURI|
11/28/15: Vanderbilt (3-6, 1-4 SEC, NR)
- W1: Lost to Western Kentucky, 14-12.
- W2: Lost to Georgia, 31-14.
- W3: Beat Austin Peay, 47-7.
- W4: Lost to #3 Ole Miss, 27-16.
- W5: Beat MTSU, 17-13.
- W6: Off
- W7: Lost to South Carolina, 19-10.
- W8: Beat Missouri, 10-3.
- W9: Lost to #18 Houston, 34-0.
- W10: Lost to Florida, 9-7.
|Sat, Nov 14||vs Kentucky|
|Sat, Nov 21||vs Texas A&M|
|Sat, Nov 28||@ Tennessee|
Chances of a Vols win (on a scale from 5-30): Does this mean Vandy is dangerous, or was this just a fluky game for Florida? I'm splitting the difference there, and combined with feeling a little spooked with the Vols, I'm moving these guys to 22 for now.
|PREDICTIONS - VANDERBILT|