Putting Memphis to Bed

Tennessee LogoMemphis M Logo

Before we move on to the work of the week, let’s put this week behind us by tucking the Memphis Tigers in bed. Here’s a few thoughts too important to forget.

Tennessee made 29 first downs. Memphis made 27. Not too different until you notice the third down conversions. Tennessee 8-for-13. Memphis was only 4-for-11.

But a powerful message was sent by the Vols on 4th down. Kiffin went for it on 4th down 4 times and converted 3 of the attempts. Not only is that a good ratio of success, but that is demonstrating a will to crush the opponent. For all of you who think that that is a display of unsportsmanship (some actually do), then adopt the Canadian Football League where you are only given 3 downs.

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Vol RB Bryce Brown scores the first TD of the night. There were many more. Photo by Amy Smotherman Burgess.

Vol RB Bryce Brown scores the first TD of the night. There were many more. Photo by Amy Smotherman Burgess.

Good to see freshman Bryce Brown get some touches. Eleven carries, 55 yards, 5.0 yards per carry, and a TD. But the receivers got to play with the fun doll the most. Darius Moore with 2 TDs. Gerald Jones, Luke Stocker, Nu’Keese Richardson, and Quintin Hancock each had a score.

Here’s another salute to senior QB Jonathan Crompton. In 2008, Crompton threw for 889 yards. At his current 2009 pace, he will finish this season with 2,597 yards (he has 1,948 so far). Jonathan has passed for more than 200 yards in all games but three this season – UCLA, Florida, and South Carolina.

It makes you wonder how Jonathan Crompton’s career will be remembered 10 or 20 years from now…

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Denarius Moore reacts to missing a TD catch. Photo by Amy Smotherman Burgess.

When will it stop!

There is always the bad with the good. But then there’s the ugly…

A second convincing win in a row with way too many silly penalties. The Vols committed 7 infractions for 50 penalty yards. One was for delay of game, two for offsides, one for a false start – 4 of the 7 were not during open play. Again, this has to improve.

One of these days, these mental errors are going to kill us…

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Roger Woods, team chaplain, addresses the Vols

Roger Woods, team chaplain, addresses the Vols

When the history of the 2009 season is written, it has to include the team meeting held on the eve of the Georgia game. Joel of RTT tells the story of Roger Woods, team chaplain, and how this team became unified. No matter your personal philosophy or religious affiliation, this story is heartwarming and may explain a lot about what we are witnessing with this team. This is the kind of story that makes you understand how sport can be a worthwhile, important endeavor beyond the money and fame – what those that criticize sports don’t understand.

Sport above all is about human beings learning to work together to achieve goals.

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Joe Biddle at the Tennessean makes a good argument for Lane Kiffin being the SEC Coach of the Year if the Vols finish 8-4. It’s a good story because many of us can identify with the writer when he says “When Tennessee hired Lane Kiffin, I met the decision with a heavy dose of skepticism. There just wasn’t enough to know about Lane Kiffin as a college head coach. He had never been one. Kiffin, 33 at the time, came off as a cocky loudmouth…”

Is there an echo in this room?!?!

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It was a great week. I’m ready for Oxford.

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