Following Tennessee’s embarrassing loss to Vanderbilt, we can finally declare this official.
For the first time in the history of Tennessee football, the Volunteers have finished a season with eight losses. For the first time since joining the SEC in 1933, Tennessee has finished a season with zero wins in conference play.
Let that sink in for a second.
This is the first time since 1964 that Tennessee has lost to Kentucky and Vanderbilt in football in the same season.
Through all the low points that this program has endured over the past decade, this is statistically the lowest point. Perhaps the most upsetting part of all this is the fact that it happened during the fifth year of the Butch Jones era. In a spot where Jones should have had all his pieces in place, everything crumbled.
Unfortunately for him, this is the legacy that he’s left at Tennessee.
Butch had all the talent needed to make a run at a title during the past two years, but it just never came together. Between injuries and botched late game situations, it just never happened for him. Once Josh Dobbs, Derek Barnett, Cameron Sutton, Jalen Reeves-Maybin and Alvin Kamara left town, it was all over for Butch.
What we were left with was a roster that wasn’t ready to compete. Through more injuries, game mismanagement and an obvious lack of talent in some places, Jones fielded a team that will now be considered the least successful Tennessee football team of all time.
You’ve got to feel for these seniors. What an incredibly horrific way to finish out their career in Knoxville. Thankfully for everyone involved, it’s all over with.
Thank goodness for Rick Barnes and Tennessee basketball.