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One publication believes Tennessee will go to a bowl game in 2018

Can the Vols get the job done?

NCAA Football: Massachusetts at Tennessee Randy Sartin-USA TODAY Sports

Bowl projections haven’t included the Tennessee Volunteers for the most part this summer. That was to be expected, considering the Vols’ dreadful 2017 season. But with a new staff in place and a talent base that isn’t totally dry, a bowl game appearance isn’t out of the question. Talk to most Tennessee fans and they’ll tell you that a bowl game is their goal for the 2018 Vols.

At least one publication believes that the Vols will play in a bowl. College Sports Madness updated their projections over the weekend, placing Tennessee in the Texas Bowl against TCU.

“Its going to be tough sledding until November as the Volunteers play Florida, Georgia, Auburn, Alabama, and South Carolina over the course of a six week stretch. The month of November is forgiving as they don’t have to leave the state while finishing with three of four games at home. Look for an up and down first season for Tennessee, but they will find a way to scratch out six wins.”

Honestly, the destination doesn’t matter for Tennessee. Just getting to six wins would be a successful first season for Jeremy Pruitt, all things considered. Pruitt’s staff has brought in some new blood already that fits what they want to do defensively, but how quickly those new players get up to speed will be a key. It may be a case where the team hits its stride down the stretch, taking on beatable opponents late in the season.

If UTEP, ETSU and Charlotte are all wins, Tennessee will have to win three of six games against West Virginia, Florida, South Carolina, Vanderbilt, Kentucky and Missouri — assuming we’re counting Alabama, Auburn and Georgia as losses. It doesn’t seem like too much of a stretch to think that this group can get that job done.