Players and coaches talked about winning for the seniors all week, but beating Tennessee was big for…
Be sure to check back to see what the IT staff has to say about the Tennessee game every Saturday this fall.
Randy Moore's thoughts
Tennessee sustained some decent drives in the first half but couldn't finish them. The ground game, as usual, was non-existent, putting more pressure on Justin Worley than a freshman quarterback should have to shoulder. With UT down just 21-7 but facing third-and-goal at the Arkansas 5-yard line just before halftime, Worley threw an interception that seemed to deflate the Vols, who played an even worse second half than usual -- outscored 28-0 en route to a 49-7 beat-down.
Tennessee's defense gave up a 71-yard touchdown run that broke ridiculously clean. The Vols also surrendered an assortment of big pass plays, despite 30-miles-per-hour winds that should have hampered the Razorback passing attack. Arkansas had five scoring drives of five plays or less, as its advantage in speed was painfully obvious throughout the game. Simply put, the Vol defense is not very fast and not very good.
Vol punters seemed to compete all night to see which could be the most awful, and eight UT coverage men missed tackles on a 60-yard punt return by the Hogs' Joe Adams. Even Tennessee's usually dependable Devrin Young was a disappointment, generating next-to-nothing on kickoff returns and letting a punt hit the ground that cost 15 yards of field position. George Cafego is turning over in his grave.
Special Teams: F
Danny Parker's thoughts
During the drive home, fellow InsideTennessee staff members get a kick out of my Keith Jackson (the announcer) impression. After Saturday night's 42-point loss, the Tennessee Volunteers look like they're doing their best to impersonate a Southeastern Conference football team — and failing.
Given eighth-ranked Arkansas is clicking on all cylinders and suddenly in the hunt for the national championship, the effort and lack of discipline by the Vols was gut-wrenching to witness.
Sure, it is easy to point to 2012 and 2013 with so many contributors set to return, but what are those young players learning at the moment? Sitting at 4-6 and winless in the league, too? Not much other than how to lose with grace.
On a positive note, neither team needed to use a stretcher, it didn't rain and nobody's uniform got dirty.
The Tennessee running game averaged 3.2 yards per carry. The passing attack averaged 6.8 yards per attempt. And, the offense didn't lose a fumble. Thumbs up, guys.
The Razorbacks got 8.5 yards per rush, 9.1 yards per pass and out-punted the Vols on average 49.3 to 34.0.
The best thing that took place for the Orange and White in Fayetteville? Quarterback Tyler Bray threw some passes in the pregame and could be back for Vanderbilt.
Special teams: F
Chris Price's thoughts
The Volunteers started slow and finished even slower. There was a slight moment when Tennessee made the game 21-7 and drove down inside the 10-yard line where Tennessee fans may have thought they would get back in the game — then Justin Worley threw an interception at the 1-yard line.
It was all downhill from there and Tennessee put together one of their most embarrassing games that they have played since Derek Dooley stepped foot on campus.
The offense couldn't finish, the defense missed more tackles than they made and the special teams was the worst it has been this season and it wasn't even close. The punting was that of a high school team and the punt return for a touchdown made Joe Adams look like Devin Hester.
Overall, this game couldn't have been worse. Some might say 'Chris, you said they were going to lose 45-17' and yes I did, but I definitely did not expect they would look that bad in every aspect of the football game. HORRIBLE.
Special Teams: F
Josh Woodward's thoughts
Wow, I'm not really sure what to type. The Big Orange laid a big egg in Fayetteville, with Arkansas throwing the ball around like it was a 7 0n 7 tournament. The Vols did have some missed opportunities, but they looked like a team that just can't compete in the SEC. You can see the frustration in the team and in the coaching staff. Derek Dooley need to evaluate some staff after this season is over, because you have seen zero improvement in some areas.
Offensively the Volunteers were able to move the ball against by far the worst SEC defense they have played. Justin Worley just has to learn that you can't loft the ball over the middle in this league or it will be an interception. Rajion Neal contains the speed the Big Orange need on offense; he played well tonight against the Hogs. Da'Rick Rogers played well also grabbing some nice balls and again going over a hundred yards receiving. Tennessee also played more wildcat formation with Marlin Lane and did have some success, but the traditional run game is still no existent. In order for Tennessee to beat Vanderbilt next weekend they must have Tyler Bray back at quarterback.
Defensively this team got scorched; team speed is a problem in the secondary. Tennessee played a cover two most of the game and still got beat over the top multiply times. I haven't seen so many missed tackles in a SEC game in a long time, Arkansas players just pin balled right off Tennessee defenders for most of the night. Austin Johnson did have a nice interception in the first half, but that is about it for the highlight reel.
Special Teams was on par with the offense and defense tonight, it stunk. Michael Palardy and Matt Darr continue to have punting woes. The Vols also missed 115 tackles on the Joe Adams punt return for a touchdown. Adams will likely be in the ESPN top 10 plays with that return. Devrin Young was held in check most of the night as the Arkansas kicker booted the ball through the end zone for touch backs.
Special Teams: F