Following a week of criticism from so-called “experts” and traitorous fans (I’m looking at you Clay Travis), Coach Derek Dooley sent a clear message to the 92,000 strong, on-hand Saturday night at Neyland, that he can turn “it” on at anytime he chooses. Tennessee as in the midst of a six game SEC “calculated losing” streak. The Vols had recently suffered losses to Alabama, Arkansas and LSU in games that were decided in the fourth quarter. Throughout the week preparing for visiting Vanderbilt, Coach Dooley had been the focus by some media talking heads, as deficient in his ability to motivate his team to compete, and come from behind, in the fourth quarter of a close game.
Coach Dooley, upon hearing these doubts, immediately set out to prove his critics wrong. His plan was to show the football world that not even a 7 point deficit at home to a dirty and talented Commodore team could stop his team in the fourth quarter. His quick and decisive challenge of the game winning interception in OT is a testament to his unwillingness to bow to the pressure of the media when he refused to stop cursing on the sidelines or to switch from his orange pants. This was the time for Dooley to stand up for the players. Some will say that SEC handed Tennessee the ballgame with a review “gaffe” but others will see it as a case where Mike Slive smiled upon the players clad in orange. A strong SEC needs a strong Tennessee….not a school with a coach with a head that resembles a mild dud like that of Vandy’s James Franklin.
Dooley’s plan to fall behind such a scrappy Vanderbilt team, may have seemed risky to some. However, it is clear from this contest, that Coach Dooley is certainly in charge of this football team. Vols can rest easy, knowing that they have a fiery coach that can will his team to a victory over a highly touted SEC ball club.
- Vandy Preview (loserswithsocks.com)
- SEC officials admit to reviewing gaffe in Vandy-Tennessee game (collegefootballtalk.nbcsports.com)
- Arkansas Punt Return vs Tennessee: It’s a “process” People (loserswithsocks.com)
- We gotta be patient people. Dooley needs us (loserswithsocks.com)
- Dooley to step “it” up in the red zone (loserswithsocks.com)
- Monday Morning QB: Bill Battle Edition (loserswithsocks.com)