The Tennessee fan base showed up and showed out in a sold out Neyland Stadium vs Ole Miss. The fans produced a season-high 115.6 decibel rating during a pivotal third down late in the fourth quarter. Regardless of a checkered Neyland Stadium, the hometown Vols lost to the #13 ranked Rebels 31-26 on multiple questionable calls. It was clear to see the frustration on everyone.
The Scoop n’ score that never was.
Let’s begin in the middle of the first quarter. On a third down play, Ole miss quarterback Matt Corral keeps the ball on what appears to be an ordinary read option play that is blown up by the Tennessee defense. After a forced fumble, linebacker Tyler Baron scoops up the ball and takes it back to make the score tied at 7. However, officials call the play back and gives an explanation that anyone with a football mind would find boggling.
The play was ruled dead because Matt Coral was “giving himself up” according to a statement released by the officiating crew. Coral was not giving himself up. By definition, the ball carrier must be making an effort to getting to the ground. Corral was standing up-right when contact was first made.
The ‘injury’ bug bites Ole Miss.
Now, I would like to start this off by saying I have never and will never cheer for a player that is genuinely injured on a play. Ole Miss did not fall into that genuine category. Ole Miss had 28 defensive injuries Saturday night against vs Tennessee on 78 offensive plays. So every 3.4 plays a player went down with an “injury.”
These injuries were absolute ludicrous. Many thought seemed every time Tennessee gained momentum a player went down and slowed down the Vols offense. As big as tempo has been to this offense, it is clear to see that this was designed by Lane Kiffin and proved beneficial to the second year head coach.
Tennessee falls to 4-3 on the season and will now travel to Tuscaloosa to battle the fourth ranked Crimson Tide. Josh Heupel has an uphill battle to climb. Heupel does have his this team trending in the right direction as the Vols lost yet another game due to calls and/or plays that were out of their control.