Coach Duggs and his #1 ranked Tennessee Volunteers played a road game against Vandy tonight to try and continue their hot streak.
Duggs was confident pregame stating, “I’m going to fuck Vandy up.”
Right off the bat Jazz Owens broke off a 36 yard run and Duggs doubled-down on his pregame prediction saying, “this is going to be a slaughter” and that, “Ya boy is going to the Natty.”
Unfortunately for Tennessee Duggs’ confidence was followed by an interception from Tennessee QB Stefan Cheah.
Vandy QB Mike Young then broke off a 25 yard run, injuring himself in the process.
Backup QB Aaron Mooney led Vandy on a quick TD drive with Mark Meeks punching in a short rushing TD.
Duggs made it a point to say that he was, “Not rattled” and, “I’m fine, we’re fine.”
Cheah and Owens were gashing Vandy on the ground following Duggs’ “4 yards and a Cloud of Duggs” offensive philosophy.
Tiny Scoops had one of his best runs of the season, diving across the goal-line for a 22 yard TD run.
Duggs claimed that, “I could run for a thousand yards in this game alone.”
Duggs maintained his guarantee that, “this game is a formality … I’m going to the National Championship.”
In the early going, Duggs looked a liiiiitttlleee lost without Muj or Billy Football by his side.
The Volunteers snatched some momentum with a goal-line stand early in the 2nd quarter, forcing a Vandy field goal.
Owens continued his impressive kick returning with a 38 yard return to start off Tennessee’s following drive.
Tennessee put together a solid drive, converting twice on 3rd down and punctuating it with a 28 yard strike from Cheah to wide receiver Vincent Moltisanti.
It must be said that although they were keeping the game close, Vanderbilt are not a talented team.
Despite this, Meeks hauled in a 53 yard receiving TD for Vandy right after a 22 yard run.
Really poor display at the end of the half for Tennessee’s defense.
Owens responded with a 47 yard kickoff return for Tennessee.
Duggs displayed some incompetent clock management as the 1st half came to a close.
Cheah ran out of bounds for a 13 yard loss and then damn near threw his second interception of the half.
Then he almost threw another pick.
Duggs was approaching MeltdownMode.
Duggs inexplicably called for his offense to go for it on 4th and 23 from the 40 yard line leading to Cheah almost throwing ANOTHER interception.
It’s a miracle none of Cheah’s passes were caught by a defensive player on Vandy.
Duggs placed a halftime call to his guru Muj who advised him to:
- Keep his composoure
- Run the ball
- Something about running press coverage even while blitzing? Sure, whatever.
I will say that Duggs emerged from the locker room after half with a noticeably calmer demeanor.
Vandy went for a fake punt on 4th and 13 near midfield for God knows what reason and they failed.
Tennessee was gifted great field position and they responded with a short TD drive with Owens fighting his way in for a 7 yard TD run.
A clipping penalty called back what would have been an amazing touchdown reception from Grump Kirkpatrick and then Cheah followed that up with ANOTHER pass right to a defensive player on Vandy who AGAIN dropped it.
Owens continued his streak of absolutely putting the entire team on his back in this game.
At one point in the 4th he was up to 152 rushing yards on 18 carries!
Not to mention the damage he did in the passing game.
Tiny Scoops caught a 7 yard TD pass from Cheah to put Tennessee up 28-17 with 4:32 left in the 4th.
Vandy’s offense stalled out after that and the game was done and dusted at that point.
Owens strolled in for a 3 yard TD late to push himself right up to 200 yards rushing on the day.
Coverage of the game cut out but apparently Vanderbilt scored to make it 35-23?
And then Tennessee came down the field and Cheah threw a TD to Jevon Carter to make it 41-23.
Then Duggs appeared to command kicker PFT Commenter to miss the extra point attempt on purpose.
Duggs explained this as a way to take the pressure off of Commenter who was perfect on the season before that miss.
It wasn’t Tennessee’s best performance but at this point in the season a win is all that matters.
Despite the win Tennessee fell to #2 in the nation, as Navy took over the #1 spot.
Tennessee plays Kentucky tomorrow at 3:30pm. If they win, they’re in the SEC title game.
Star running back Rico Burgerton will be back in the lineup.
Watching Burgerton and Owens go to work together will be something special.