Are you looking ahead past the Mocs?
One game at a time… play ’em as they come…
Yes, I might be watching more of Auburn at Mississippi State than Chattanooga at Tennessee. But the Vols can’t get caught taking the week off, licking their wounds. And I doubt that this will happen.
And I’m not dismissing Saturday’s game from this site. So here are some summaries of thought expressed at various venues across the world wide webster.
Matt Slovin at WBIR.com gives his thoughts on what is important for Tennessee to not only defeat Chattanooga on Saturday but to set the path for the remainder of the season. He boiled it down to these five:
2. The young OL must protect QB Justin Worley and give him adequate time to throw.
3. Contain a Treon Harris-like QB, the Mocs’ Jacob Huesman who can dual-threat you to death. Huesman has rushed for 258 yards on 61 carries and also has thrown for 681 yards and eight TDs. He had four touchdown passes and two touchdown runs last week in a 55-6 blowout of VMI.
4. Vol WRs must create some space in our short-to-medium length passing game.
5. Jones & Co. must not overlook the Mocs. A loss Saturday could spark a riot in the Neyland Stadium stands similar to the one the last time Chattanooga defeated Tennessee in 1958. (UTC defeated the Vols 14-6). As some fans tried to tear down the goal posts, a scuffle took place and police tried to intervene. What followed was a major riot involving paddy wagons, tear gas and fire hoses.
And for you history buffs (thinking of you, TK), the only other victory by the Mocs over the Vols was in 1905 played in Chattanooga, as recounted by John Schearer of the Chattanooga Times. Also, the Vols and the Mocs played each other annually from 1938 to 1966 (with the 1958 game the only Vol loss).
Wes Rucker at GoVols247 reminds us that Chattanooga is ranked #12 in the current NCAA Division I FCS poll, and earlier this season they nearly upset FBS opponent Eastern Michigan. Last season, the Mocs won the Southern Conference. Wes also gives a lot of material from Mocs Head Coach Russ Huesman (yes to those of you paying attention, this Huesman is the father of the other Huesman, the Mocs’ QB). The Head Coach gives nothing away and says all of the right things, but you can tell this game is a very big deal to Chattanooga.
Even the Washington Post ran an AP game preview, which included this line uttered by Butch Jones at his Monday press conference that for some ended the honeymoon period with the new coach…
“Everyone wants the prize, but no one wants the process. We’re going through the process right now.”
Such a sensitive lot some of us are. In any event, the article informs that Mocs’ key RB Keon Williams will not play Saturday due to a hand injury that required surgery.
Alright. So let’s get to the matter at hand.
In this game, which is the first time Tennessee has played former foe Chattanooga since 1969, the Vols’ vastly superior talent should be the difference for a convincing homecoming win. But as they say, the game isn’t played with paper unless you are folding the paper into that triangular wad and sliding it across the table attempting to let part of it hand off the edge without completely falling off. [Wasn’t it fun to kick extra points and field goals with your index finger, propelling the triangle through your opponent’s goal posts made with their index fingers?]
So, expect a battle on Saturday as the visitors are really looking forward to this match. Mocs Motivation notwithstanding, the Vols will prevail but in a somewhat frustrating fashion.
Tennessee 31 Chattanooga 14