Coach Duggs’ Tennessee Volunteers came into tonight’s SEC Title game against LSU riding high and with not only an SEC championship, but a spot in the BCS National title game on the line.
Both teams and their high-flying offenses descended upon the Georgia Dome to make their claim for supremacy in arguably’s the nation’s strongest conference.
When you put 2 explosive offenses in a dome fireworks are sure to follow right?
Let’s find out.
Tennessee’s first drive went perfectly. A couple solid gains for Rico Burgerton on the ground, a completion in the flat from Cheah, and a 26 yard TD reception by Grump Kirkpatrick made it 7-0 Volunteers.
LSU star QB JB Haley is a dual threat QB who, paired with LSU star RB Will Barrett, form a fearsome duo.
Tennessee forced a 3-and-out only for Jazz Owens to muff the punt!
LSU recovered as the ball bounced off of Owens’ helmet.
What a brutal mistake by Owens.
LSU capitalized right away with an 18 yard TD from Haley to receiver John Thomas that Duggs contemplated challenging before thinking better of it.
Owens had a big return called back due to a penalty and then Burgerton fumbled and LSU recovered.
Madness to start the game.
Tennessee’s defense held firm and forced LSU into kicking a field goal.
Despite his fumble Rico continued to beast averaging around 9 yards per carry in the early going.
He punched in his first score of the day on a 1 yard rushing TD with 2:55 left in the 2nd quarter.
After LSU stalled out on offense and punted Cheah and Rico led Tennessee down the field with a surgical drive that ended with a 6 yard Rico rushing TD.
Duggs and Co. went in the locker room for halftime with that lead intact.
The first play coming out of the half Barrett ran it 85 yards to the house for LSU.
Owens responded with a 53 yard return on the ensuing kickoff.
Tennessee matriculated (vocab word) down the field with relative ease capping off their drive with a 2 yard Owens TD run.
Haley responded with a 25 yard TD strike to James Martin on LSU’s following drive where it seemed like Tennessee’s defense let their guard down.
Tennessee drove right down the field on their following drive with its usual offense: a couple passes to Owens, a bunch of big runs from Rico and Owens, punctuated by an Owens TD run.
LSU refused to go quietly with Barrett busting out for a 32 yard run on LSU’s ensuing drive.
He followed it up with a 24 yard TD run to make it 35-32 after Haley scampered in for the 2 point conversion.
Duggs’ defense which had been on a hot streak didn’t come to play in the biggest moment of the season.
Duggs summed it up saying, “I can’t stop them to save my fucking life.”
LSU’s defense was just as pathetic allowing Tennessee to cruise down the field with zero resistance on their following drive making the game 42-32 after ANOTHER Rico TD.
Tennessee defensive lineman Vaughn Vaughn sacked Haley twice, stalling LSU’s drive and forcing them to attempt and make a FG.
All that was left was for Tennessee to recover the onside kick which they did.
Tennessee salted the game away with a patented nothing-but-runs drive that ended with an Owens TD.
A missed 2 point conversion in the name of the almighty 50Burger left Tennessee with a 48-35 win.
The only drama left was to see if that win would be enough to get Tennessee into the National Title game.
#4 Miami beat #3 NC State 45-43 in the ACC title game.
#5 Ohio State beat #17 Michigan 35-26 in the Big 10 title game.
Rico finished 2nd in Heisman voting despite missing 5 weeks due to injury.
Tennessee made it to the National title game and will be facing off against Miami!
What a shock, Navy falls out of the title game after their bye week despite being at a tie with Miami with .992 BCS points.
Thursday night at 9:17pm Duggs and his Tennessee team square off against Miami for all the marbles