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Arkansas Game Preview
Posted: Thursday, October 1st, 2015, 7:28 PM
by Josh
Being right has never sucked so bad. The Florida game was a little more high scoring than I thought it would be but the scenario I envisioned pretty much played out exactly as I said. Give Botch credit, he did gamble a few times with some trick plays and going for it on 4th down. But unfortunately with a 6 point lead he tried to sit on the ball. Why not at least try to get a few first downs? There wasn't much time left. The one thing you couldn't do is exactly what they did and that's go 3 and out. And of course Florida gets a miracle play to take the lead. Was there any doubt by this point? I was actually fooled on the 4th and 14. I thought that was way too long to convert. As long as we stay disciplined we should stop this. It's just so disgusting. Then we get the ball back with about a minute and a half and you are thinking that's plenty of time but after the 3 and out, who knows. Well, when the offense had to move the ball, they went right down the field to get into field goal range, dispite horrible clock management and lack of general awareness. If managed properly they could have had a much more makable field goal. When they lined up for that 55 yarder I knew it was too long. Medley was way off to the right but with plenty of distance. But Florida called a timeout to ice Medley and I was thinking then they may have just screwed themselves. When you basically give a kicker a practice shot he knows how he needs to hit it the next time. He kicks the field goal and it looked like it may just hook in but alas it never did. Such is Vol luck.

I have heard people trying to blame anything from the players being young, to them not executing to blaming preseason expectations. We don't need to dig that deep. The reason Tennessee lost to Florida and ultimately the reason Tennessee isn't 4-0 is because the head coach botched the end of both games with horrible decisions down the stretch. It's as simple as that. And anyone who tries to argue otherwise just looks like a brainwashed moron at this point.

There are so many things to address here. And just let me say, it's a real shame that I'm having to break down coaching debacles instead of talking matchups. But that's what Botch Jones does. You have to take his terrible coaching into account.

First, I have heard several people, including John Pennington and Heather Harrington and even Jerry Glannville say that the problem with this season was the preseason expectations and the hype train. I need help with this one. How exactly does that have anything to do with the head coach botching 2 big games? Preseason expectations didn't kick a field goal from the 1 yard line. They didn't kick an extra point up 12 with 10 minutes left. They didn't try to sit on a 6 point lead by going 3 and out. If anything, the expectations were on point because this team would be 4-0 if not for moronic coaching.

I've also heard a lot of people bring up Johnny Majors and how long it took him to get it rolling here as a reason to keep Botch at least 4 or 5 years. There is really no comparison to Johnny Majors though because Johnny never had this much talent until 1985 really. Also, in Johnny's 3rd year in 1979, Tennessee beat an 8-3 Auburn team that was a huge rival at the time 35-17. They also beat #13 Notre Dame 40-18. In 1980 they played close games with the eventual national champions Georgia and a very talented USC team. They also destroyed Auburn at Auburn 42-0. In 1981 the Vols beat Auburn for the 3rd straight year and finished 8-4, giving Johnny his first 8 win season. In 1982 Tennessee started a 4 game winning streak against Alabama. In 1983 Tennessee would go 9-3. There is really no comparison. Johnny Majors may have started a little slow but he was collecting big wins here and there and he didn't have a ton of talent to work with. At that time Auburn was probably as big of a rival as Florida is now. He had streaks over both them and Alabama. When you beat your rivals and win big games from time to time, you have job security.

To this point, Botch Jones has not beaten any of our current 3 main rivals in Alabama, Florida, and Georgia. His biggest win was over South Carolina in 2013. They Gamecocks were pretty good that year but keep in mind Tennessee had a halftime lead and lost it in the 2nd half. They needed a miracle catch by Marquez North to pull it out.

When I hear people say, "You have to give a coach at least 4 or 5 years" I think to myself, when in the modern era has a coach not really done anything after 3 years but proves to be a championship coach in his 4th or 5th year? I'm talking about top 15 all time programs, not places like Kansas State or Virginia Tech who can afford to be more patient.

Jim Donnan got 5 years at Georgia. He was 5-6 in year 1 but he did beat rival Auburn to give the Dawgs some hope. Year 2 they were 10-2 and beat Florida. 9-3 in year 3 with a win over Auburn. He then went 8-4 in years 4 and 5. He was kept 5 years because he gave his fans early hope, then they realized he seemed to have a ceiling.

I'm struggling to think of any more examples of guys getting 4 or 5 years while not doing much by year 3 at a top 15 program and then going on to be successful.

Brady Hoke at Michigan got 4 years but he was 11-2 in year 1.

Will Muschamp got 4 but he was 11-2 in year 2.

Bottom line, Botch Jones hasn't really done anything results wise to this point. Yeah, he is a great recruiter but his sales pitch and promise of the future won't work if this season goes downhill. The recruiting will fall off.

And these brainwashed coach worshippers are sounding more and more ignorant trying to defend Botch. Every time this guy opens his mouth he sounds like he is on bath salts. If he really believes the crap he is saying, I am starting to wonder if he is retarded.

SPOILER ALERT: Butch Jones will not be Tennessee's coach in 2017. The Vol Colonel has said that there is no way he gets fired this year because the administration doesn't make football a priority. I trust Vol Colonel on this. UT's administration is terrible. I do think, however, that Dave Hart may be on the chopping block if this year goes bad and the sooner we get that guy out of here the better.

Tennessee is about to face several coaches that are superior to Botch Jones when it comes to in game coaching. This should be of great concern to everyone. Bret Beliema is a more accomplished coach. Mark Richt is a better coach, although he botches big games too. Nick Saban is a far better coach. Mark Stoops is a better coach. Steve Spurrier and Gary Pinkel are better coaches, although their talent situations may allow Tennessee to get wins based on that alone.

When it comes to this game it's hard to get a feel. Arkansas is coming off their own botch against Texas A&M to cap off their 3 game losing streak. You know they will get it together some time but will it be against Tennessee?

On the other hand, Tennessee has to be heartbroken after another 4th quarter collapse. I will say this, if Tennessee plays with the effort in this game that they have in the first 4 games I will tip my cap to Botch because motivation would clearly be one of his strong points.

I see this game playing out one of 3 ways.

It's a close game that could go either way. Both teams fighting hard to get over the hump. Or...

Tennessee plays hard and handles Arkansas because they are the better team and they have a big enough lead that Botch can't screw it up. Or...

Tennessee is hung over after the Florida debacle, Arkansas gets it together and handles Tennessee at home.

Tennessee's offense has proven it can score on an elite defense, even without having much of a passing game. Arkansas is capable of grinding off huge chunks of clock.

I think overall, Tennessee has better talent and a better team, but....

I think the Vols will be hung over and we will start to see the beginning of the meltdown.

Arkansas 31
Tennessee 17

In other games...

Alabama 38
Georgia 30

Ole Miss 41
Florida 14

South Carolina 20
Missouri 17

Texas A&M 34
Mississippi State 24

Notre Dame 28
Clemson 24

Overall Record (17-7)

That's all I have this week. As always, I appreciate everyone who takes the time to read what I write.

For those who want you can follow me on Twitter @Joshes_Blog

Have a safe weekend everyone and God Bless!

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