The Day After
Tennessee was manhandled Saturday to open SEC play as Florida won 34-3 in Gainesville. We review the loss with The Day After.
HOT AND NOT
Brent Cimaglia — The placekicker remains red hot. Cimaglia is now 9 for 9 on the season and has made 11 in a row going back to last year.
Kuroutt Garland/Darrel Middleton— sGarland had 3 tackles as did Darrel Middleton. Both defensive linemen flashed a couple of times.
Defending the pass — Tennessee can’t get to the quarterback rushing three or four defenders. And they don’t defend well on the back end either. Now, Tennessee did get two second half interceptions and Kenneth George Hr. Had a nice PBU, but the game was over at that point. In the first half, Kyle Trask looked like he was playing in a 7 on 7 game as he went 13 of 15 and 8 of his completions were for 20 yards or more. The middle of the field was wide open all afternoon and exposed it particularly in the first half.
Discipline — A week ago, Tennessee had three dead ball personal foul penalties. Saturday in Gainesville they had three more. This Tennessee team has no margin for error. They certainly can’t give away yards in penalties. The last two weeks they have given up 90 yards in dead ball personal foul flag.
The run game — In the BYU game, it felt like the run game success was some fool’s gold because the Vols were so good running wide. You know that wasn’t going to be the case when it came to SEC play and it wasn’t. Tennessee ran for 88 yards as the Gator defense had four TFL’s in the run game. The Vols tried to make the swing passes to the running backs an extension of the run game on Saturday and that was a disaster.
INT in the end zone — Down 7-0, Tennessee had a great opportunity to tie the game up. The Vols got the ball in the Gator redzone following a Kyle Track fumble. After driving to Gator three, Jarrett Guarantano’s pass went through the hands of Jauan Jennings and fell into the arms of Trey Dean giving Florida a touchback and all the momentum.
JG overthrows DWA — On the first play of the second quarter after a delay of game to start the quarter, Guarantano had Dominique Wood-Anderson running wide open in the middle of the field and over threw him. Five plays later Guarantano was intercepted for a second time.
Florida’s first touchdown — Tennessee was hoping to make quarterback Kyle Trask, who was making his first career start since middle school, uncomfortable. They didn’t all day especially on the Gators opening drive. Trask first completion was for 43 yards. His second for 19 and the Gators first school as both throws were in the open middle of the field.
Perine scores to end the half — Trailing 10-0, Tennessee desperately didn’t need to fall behind three scores, but the Vols couldn’t keep Florida out of the end zone. Trask carved the defense up with completions of 16, 10 and 24. They caped off the drive with a 1 yard run as time expired on the first half giving Florida a 17-0 lead and end any fleeting hope the Vol faithful might have had.
INSIDE THE NUMBERS
8.3 — Average distance to go on third down. Going into the game, Pruitt talked about staying ahead of the sticks avoiding third and long something they simply did not do on Saturday. Of Tennessee’s 13 third down plays, 8 were 3rd and 7 or longer.
6 — The number of PBU’s by the Florida defensive front as they batted away multiple screens and what would have been a touchdown to Austin Pope. Tennessee’s offensive line never got the edge guy cut and the quarterbacks could never throw around them.
40.6 — Average number of points surrendered in the Vols last three SEC games played.
49% — Guarantano’s completion percentage against Florida. In two games against the Gators, Guarantano is 17-35 for 283 yards and 4 interceptions. Four of his INT’s have come against the Gators.
Jauan Jennings had 7 catches, but also had a huge drop and a personal foul penalty. Kurott Garland had his best day with 3 tackles. Daniel Bituli had 2 sacks and a forced fumble. But the reality is that Tennessee was manhandled and not really competitive against the Gators which is why the game ball is staying in the vault this week.
BIGGEST QUESTION/CONCERN MOVING FORWARD
There are several questions as the Vols head into the open date. For Jeremy Pruitt, it’s “is everyone all in” . This is without a doubt not the start that anyone had in mind. So where is everyone know a quarter of the way through the season. Does anyone enter the portal? Is everyone buying in?
The other question is who are you? What can you be? Who are your best 22?
That’s what this open date has to be about. Tennessee has spent the first month of the season yo-yoing their line up. The result is that this is an unsettled team heading into the second month of the season. The reality is with the uncertainty at the quarterback position they are more unsettled now than they have been to this point.