As Rocky Top blared following a blocked extra point to keep the score at 50-17, I realized that this was probably rock bottom. Missouri ran Tennessee off of the field tonight as the Vols dropped to 4-6. With LSU in town next weekend, the Vols have essentially been eliminated from any thought of a bowl game.
For the first time all season, it seemed like the players weren’t all that interested. From the opening snap, the effort was less than stellar. Missouri racked up 659 total yards of offense — 433 of which were on the ground.
If you take away a pick six from Nigel Warrior, this game would have never been competitive.
Butch Jones will inevitably blame injuries and inexperience here, but at this point that has to fall back on him. This is year five of his program. Depth shouldn’t be an issue at this point, yet it is.
What else can you say here? The time has come. For the sake of Tennessee fans’ sanity, it’s time to make a move. We need some sort of sign that the wheels are in motion here — at least I do. Currie’s silence on the matter has been maddening and it’s got to change.
The Vols lost a commitment from five star offensive tackle Cade Mays earlier this week. Jatavious Harris, Brendon Harris and Lyn-J Dixon have also decommitted. Other commits are sniffing around. They know what is about to happen. They aren’t stupid.
You aren’t going to string this class along anymore by just trying to get to the end of the season. It’s going to get uglier if you don’t address it. The program has been a punchline all season long. It’s time to stop the bleeding.
Tennessee isn’t making it better by keeping him. They’re not letting him exit with dignity. And they’re not fooling recruits.— Dan Wolken (@DanWolken) November 12, 2017
Tennessee has now lost the last game that its played against every team in the SEC. Look at this.
Tennessee's most recent game vs each SEC team:— RedditCFB (@RedditCFB) November 12, 2017
Alabama - L 45-7
Arkansas - L 24-20
Auburn - L 55-23
Florida - L 26-20
Georgia - L 41-0
Kentucky - L 29-26
LSU - L 38-7
Mizzou - L 50-17
Miss State - L 41-31
Ole Miss - L 34-3
SCar - L 15-9
Texas A&M - L 45-38
Vandy - L 45-34
What else do you need to see?
Is this lower than Derek Dooley’s final season? I’m starting to think it is. Vanderbilt blew out Dooley to end his time in Knoxville, but that was at least a 9-4 team with a budding star at head coach in James Franklin.
Tennessee has a realistic shot of going 0-8 in the SEC. The program has never done that before. The program has also never suffered more than seven losses in a season. That’s in danger, too.
For Dooley, that low point was a 41-18 loss to Vandy. Was this Butch’s swan song? Even if a move isn’t announced, you have to think that this was it internally — if it hadn’t been decided already. Patience is wearing thin in Knoxville and John Currie is officially on the clock. It’s his turn to try and hire the right guy to pull this program out of the ashes.