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Friday Live @ Pilot Lovell Road!
Posted: Friday, December 19th, 2014, 1:28 PM
We start out today's blog with a quick word from former Vol hoopster Aaron Green. Aaron is doing a great job with the Oak Ridge program. He's teaching life lessons to his kids. Here's where you come in....

We are well short today of our goal of raising at least $10,000 which will allow 100 less fortunate kids the opportunity for a memorable Christmas. The event will be held at Oak Ridge Walmart THIS SUNDAY December 21st at 2:00 pm. Donations will be taken until Sunday. Would you consider helping us in this most worthwhile endeavor? If you have any questions please contact me, Aaron Green at hagreen@ortn.edu or call 865 425-9528....[more]
ANOTHER SPORTS YEAR IN THE BOOKS
Posted: Thursday, December 18th, 2014, 6:37 PM
by Beano
SINCE WE LAST SPOKE: 12-18-14

NATURAL ATTRITION or PROGRAM DEMOLITION? The recent defections of 4-star recruits TE Daniel Helm, DE Dewayne Hendrix, RB Derrell Scott and DE Joe Henderson have created quite a buzz on local sports radio. Especially with rumors swirling that in at least two instances -Helm and Hendrix- Butch Jones’ alleged caustic motivational approach was a strong factor in their departure. The discussion has gone straight party line with those already convinced Butch is the wrong guy expressing alarm while those who are believers or hopeful that Jones is the man view it as the cost of big business as in with high-level, high-number recruiting comes high turnover. Count me in the latter camp. I understand the former however. Once you decide that someone is wrong for the program you jump on every real or contrived flaw in an attempt to build a rap sheet to promote your opinion....[more]
Live @ Sushi Spot
Posted: Thursday, December 18th, 2014, 4:28 PM
Yesterday's first hour was terribly uncomfortable to be a part of. I HATE getting into something like that in a season when we should be celebrating. It's wonderful having a blog because this a great place to clear the air/get my say unfettered. He even takes a shot at me that I've printed in bold here because I'm not afraid to take the shots. I don't completely agree with him but I take the shot nonetheless.

That said, this T-Mail from Tom in Knoxville encapsulates how I feel about what went on yesterday.

I appreciate the shot at me there. I'll own it. Believe me, I don't need the attention. I've been here 20 years....[more]
Wednesday Live @ Pilot
Kingston Pike @ Watt Rd
Posted: Wednesday, December 17th, 2014, 9:28 AM
Reading between the lines on this Hendrix article you can tell that the scene at Tennessee got to him. It would be easy to dismiss him as a cry baby or somebody not tough enough to cut it here. On the other hand, I look at this (and the departure of Helm and Scott) as an opportunity for Butch Jones and his staff to re-evaluate the way they talk to players. Guys like Hendrix and Helm shouldn't just leave your program. This isn't just attrition, it seems self-inflicted. Not saying it's all Jones and the coaches but it wouldn't hurt those guys to visit this in light of these kids packing up and getting out of town. Here's Hendrix giving an account to a local paper. Link

Here's more of it spelled out as to why Hendrix bolted. Very concerning quote here....[more]
Tuesday Stuff
Posted: Tuesday, December 16th, 2014, 11:53 AM
A Gigantic get for the Vols starts off today's blog. 'X' is here to extol the significance of the commitment of Darrin Kirkland. This guy has a tremendous football name and lots of game to go with it. Michigan's loss is Tennessee's gain. Tennessee's gain triggered a chain reaction through the recruiting world yesterday. Here's 'X', presented by Smoothie King and Fairways and Greens.

Darrin Kirkland, JR. picked Tennessee over Texas yesterday but it wasn't without a bit of drama. Tennessee was thought to be Kirkland's leader since his decommitment from Michigan and an official visit to Knoxville. However, Texas got Kirkland's last official visit. After Texas' in home visit last Tuesday and his decision to change his announcement date to yesterday, some thought Texas may have jumped in and supplanted Tennessee as Kirkland's school of choice....[more]
Monday Live Pilot Halls
Posted: Monday, December 15th, 2014, 10:39 AM
Amazing win by the hoops Vols yesterday. Down 12 early in the second half, they were dead in the water. Tennessee was unable to shoot it from 3 or anywhere else for that matter. Josh Richardson only had 2 points to at that juncture. And then it happened. Tennessee created a steal off a trap, Richardson took it coast to coast and the Vols outscored Butler by 24 points the rest of the way. That just DOESN'T happen to Butler. Amazing turnaround. There was so much great stuff in that game, where do I begin?

Richardson is a man. He's going to be really fun to watch this year....[more]
Live Friday Hardee's
Kingston Pike
Cedar Bluff Road
Posted: Friday, December 12th, 2014, 9:31 AM
Had a decent first day response to this but we are far from where we need to be on this thing. Will you consider helping? I know I'm begging for money here but it's for as great cause. We won't let you down on this and that's a promise.

Different day on the show and yet the same theme prevailed. Mike Huguenin, who I have a ton of respect for because he gives it to us straight, said he like Tennessee big time in the Gator Bowl. Huguenin said 'I can't imagine that anybody associated with Iowa really wants to be in that game. Their players won't want to be there and their fans certainly don't.' Amazing stuff. The closer we get to that game the more I'm convinced that Tennessee has this team on a Tee. This game has huge UT win written all over it....[more]
FOOTBALL DAYS DWINDLE DOWN TO A PRECIOUS FEW
Posted: Thursday, December 11th, 2014, 8:17 PM
by Beano
SINCE WE LAST SPOKE: 12-11-14

THERE IS SUCH A THING AS A GOOD GATOR: With apologies to TaxSlayer it will always be the Gator Bowl to me and I’m delighted to be in it regardless of what they call it. Tennessee could not have hoped for a more prestigious event at a better site against as beatable yet name-brand opponent than they received from the SEC. In my 50 years of Tennessee fandom some of our most memorable post season contests have been played in Jacksonville. The 1966 Vols beat a Syracuse team that had not only Larry Csonka in the backfield but the great Floyd Little as well. The 1969 game versus our hated rivals -that share the bowl’s name- will forever be remembered for the fact that our coach that day was actually their coach a secret that Doug Dickey shortly thereafter let the world in on. The 1973 game saw Condredge Holloway suffer the only bowl loss of his brilliant career and of course the 1994 victory over Virginia Tech engineered by then-Freshman Peyton Manning signaled an upgraded continuance of arguably the greatest sustained period of success in Tennessee Football History. We can only hope that the Vols return to the site of so many historic contests is an omen that a reversal of fortunes is straight ahead for our proud program...[more]
Live @ Pilot Asheville Highway
Posted: Thursday, December 11th, 2014, 12:53 PM


It's bizarro world time in major college football. Can you believe Oregon State has made a more impressive hire than either Florida or Nebraska. Look at those guys side by side. It's not even close. Kind of stinks for Wisconsin that Gary Anderson left so soon.

Tennessee could learn from this back story on Anderson's departure at Wisconsin. You must invest in your staff these days or else face flight. Link

Former UT beat writer Mike Griffith joined me on the air Tuesday for a sparring session regarding Ohio State's selection in the playoff....[more]
Live @ Calhoun's Maryville
Posted: Wednesday, December 10th, 2014, 10:23 AM
Former Vol great Aaron Green is doing a wonderful job on and off the court at Oak Ridge. He's teaching his young men under his wing about life and giving back. You can play a part in this as well.

Getting conflicting information on Cecil Cherry Jr that I wanted to bring to your attention. Big Will, (AKA Guillermo Grande) called in yesterday and said that he knew for a fact that Cecil Cherry was not committed over but was steered away from the Vols by former Vol all time great Alvin Harper Sr. Will cited Internet rants by a furious Harper back in the summer that Tennessee refused to offer his son. Apparently he trashed the coaching staff. For the record, I never saw any of this. The story goes that Alvin is upset that his son hasn't been offered a scholarship by UT and let it be known even in cyberspace. I argued with Will going on the information 'X' provided me that along with Vol Colonel and a few others....[more]
Tuesday Live
Computer Depot
Emory Rd Powell
Posted: Tuesday, December 9th, 2014, 9:56 AM
Some Tennessee fans are second guessing the decision to give Butch Jones a fairly large raise on the heels of a 6-6 season. I don't. Dave Hart had to cover his flank in this case. Butch Jones goes to $3.6 million which is middling pay in this league right now. Jones didn't so much get a merit based raise as much as it's the cost of doing business in major college football. He happens to be the guy in the seat and he's handsomely rewarded for it. That's not to say that Butch Jones hasn't done some very good things in his short time here. He has. He also has done some suspect things between the lines as well. Nobody's perfect. Again, the job at a program like Tennessee is supposed to pay more than the Kentucky's of the world....[more]
CHAMPIONSHIP GAMES LOOM WAY TOO SOON
Posted: Thursday, December 4th, 2014, 6:52 PM
by Beano
SINCE WE LAST SPOKE: 12-4-14

SWIM AT YOUR OWN RISK Including openings after the 2013 season at Texas and USC you could make a strong argument that 5 of the Top-10 CFB jobs in America have hung out help wanted signs in the last two seasons with Florida, Nebraska and Michigan joining the fray. With only the Wolverine precinct yet to report those most coveted jobs were filled by Steve Sarkisian, Charlie Strong, Jim McElwain and Mike Riley. Barring the highly unlikely event that Michigan is able to lure Jim Harbaugh away from the NFL they will likely fill their position with a soon-to-be-burnout (Bob Stoops, Les Miles), a second chance reach (Greg Schiano) or another underwhelming selection that will fall short of initially igniting their fan base. Who knows any of the above may prove to be hugely successful but I –and I’m sure most of the five teams listed above’s faithful- expected much more. The truth is the coaching profession as a whole has gotten so rich, fat and satisfied that true homerun hires are either out-of-date or out-of –everyone’s price range. I’m not saying that any of the programs above should have waited to make a move and I am certainly not one of Phillip Fulmer’s “who ya gonna get” apologists but there is more credence today than ever that before you swim in the coaching hire waters you better be sure that the boat your currently in is taking on water rapidly....[more]
HAPPY THANKSGIVING
Posted: Thursday, November 27th, 2014, 5:52 PM
by Beano
SINCE WE LAST SPOKE: 11-27-14

BRIGHT SPOT FROM MIZZOU: Though wanting to see the Vols get a signature win at home and simultaneously prove they can compete with the SEC East’s best I did draw some solace from the disappointing outcome. That being if Missouri is at or near the top of the heap why not us? The Tigers run a spread-finesse attack, have a non-descript -yet solid- Head Coach in Gary Pinkel, do not have an overly-fertile recruiting area, are not an automatic Top-15 entry, yet they are on the precipice of consecutive SECCG appearances. Sound familiar? It should because I believe in theory Butch Jones might as well be using Pinkel’s playbook in his attempt to resurrect the Volunteer Program. It certainly hasn’t always been this rosy for Pinkel and Mizzou. In his first five years at the helm following a successful run at Toledo (winningest coach in Rocket’s history at 73-37-3) Pinkel’s teams finished 4-7, 5-7, 8-5, 5-6 and 7-5....[more]
BE THANKFUL EARLY
Posted: Thursday, November 20th, 2014, 8:10 PM
by Beano
SINCE WE LAST SPOKE: 11-20-14

WHAT WE LEARNED IN WEEK 12:

NATION:

THE BAD GUY NEVER DIES UNTIL THE END For at least the fifth time this season (Okla St, Clem, ND, Louisville and Miami) Felonious State University looked to be in serious trouble teasing the rest of the hostile nation prior to mocking their way off the field with yet another improbable victory. Down 23-3 the Seminoles led by Crime Family Boss Jameis “Teflon” Winston outscored the Hurricanes 23-3 including a 20-3 second half advantage to win their 26th consecutive game. I will begrudgingly give FSU their due. With seemingly weekly reports of alleged lawless behavior and the turmoil that follows FSU continues to overcome both their on and off-field lack of discipline with ability and poise that can’t be questioned. What is in doubt however is can they continue their high-wire act once forced outside the cocoon of the feeble Atlantic Coast Conference that has proven more protective than both the Tallahassee and Florida State Law Enforcement Agencies...[more]
THINK THIS WILL BE A NOVEMBER TO REMEMBER EVERYWHERE IN CFB
Posted: Thursday, November 13th, 2014, 5:34 PM
by Beano
SINCE WE LAST SPOKE: 11-13-14

WHAT WE LEARNED IN WEEK 11:

NATION:

NEVER SAY NEVER Not that it’s the oldest rivalry but they did meet in Norman for the first time when I was a freshman in college (fall of 1974) which other than when measured in CFB years was a looooong time ago. Yet Baylor had NEVER won a game there. As a matter of fact until 2011 the Bears had never won a game versus Oklahoma PERIOD losing the first 20 games of the series. Never apparently doesn’t last forever as the Bears not only defeated the Sooners but did it in going away fashion outscoring their conference rivals 45-0 after the first quarter. Baylor had 225 more yards, 18 more first downs and had the games only takeaway to improve to 1-11 on the Sooner’s home turf....[more]
"HAPPY DAYS ARE HERE AGAAAAIII"
Posted: Thursday, November 6th, 2014, 9:12 PM
by Beano
SINCE WE LAST SPOKE: 11-6-14

BRUTAL BREAKTHROUGH: In the end it was all worth it but the rollercoaster ride that was Tennessee’s biggest win since 2007 was anything but enjoyable. Full disclosure here; I’m not sure I’ve experienced a Tennessee football game that I died a thousand deaths watching like last Saturday night since the 2001 SEC Championship Game. I realize the magnitude of those events are in different universes but I was a complete wreck. I was surprisingly hopeful, then anxious, then angry, then shamefully profane, then exhilarated. The Vols appeared to be poised to continue their practice of doing whatever it takes to lose a football game. There were the enduring short yardage failures such as Jalen Hurd’s two failed attempts inside the 1; Marlin Lane and Josh Dobbs combining for two yards on two carries from the 3 leading to a desperate Pig Howard reverse from the Gamecock 1 yard line; Lane’s later 10 yard east-to-west jaunt for zero yards leading to Hurd gaining nothing on 3rd and 1; that led to Medley’s second ill-fated appearance of the 3rd quarter; that led to my cussing binge that continued for almost the game’s entirety; that led to Sheno going to bed with a “you’re a complete moron” look on her face; but I digress. There were also the signature defensive lapses at the worst possible times such as Pharoh Cooper’s (please tell me there are no more Coopers on our schedule) inexplicably single-covered 85 yard -3rd and 11- TD catch seconds after the announcer’s brilliant summation of the Gamecock’s 4th quarter struggles....[more]
DOBBS PROVIDES LATE-SEASON HOPE
Posted: Thursday, October 30th, 2014, 5:55 PM
by Beano
SINCE WE LAST SPOKE: 10-30-14

I’M NOT JOSHIN At 27-0 after the first quarter Saturday night there was no way in the world anyone could have convinced me that I would be about to write a blog segment describing my heightened hope for the future of the program. As a matter of fact I was so angry with our performance and prospects for the future that even a Jumbotron tribute to one of my favorite all-time Vols –Peyton Manning- elicited an under my breath profanity laced response. I told those close to me that we’re so bad that our entire game production approach is to encourage the Orange-Blooded faithful to look back to past heights so we don’t think about how long it is taking to dig out of the current depths. “I’ll be 75 years old and they’ll be showing Peyton throwing TDs.I feel like an Illinois fan taking solace in Red Grange’s time on campus”. Then when the KPD came to remove some unruly Alabama fans from our section I begged them to “take me instead”. Then everything changed. Josh Dobbs entered the game and many of the mountains I saw that needed scaling didn’t seem so insurmountable. Our running game went from abysmal to admirable; our offensive line went from excruciating to executing; our November went from playing out the string to stringing together some wins. Josh Dobbs is not Condredge Holloway or Heath Shuler but in this offensive attack he is much closer to those guys than Justin Worley –however tough, courageous and admirable- ever had a chance to be....[more]
HOW DID YOU FARE ON THE SAT (STRANGE ATTITUDE TEST)?
Posted: Thursday, October 23rd, 2014, 11:32 PM
by Beano
SINCE WE LAST SPOKE: 10-23-14

FRUSTRATED BUT NOT FED UP: Mike Strange wrote an excellent column in the October 20th edition of the Knoxville News Sentinel that utilized a series of questions to gauge the Big Orange Nation’s current level of faith in the direction of the program under Butch Jones. After an inexcusable (my word not Mike’s) loss to a dreadful Florida team and an embarrassingly lopsided effort versus Ole Miss. I will readily admit that I would have logged a stronger score on the SAT (Strange Attitude Test) after the Georgia game then I did the Monday after Ole Miss. While standing strong in the belief that Butch Jones fits here and is taking care of business on the most vital of fronts -such as mending relationships, creating stability, changing the culture and most importantly fortifying the roster through recruiting- I am less than impressed with the utilization and development of the offensive pieces –however limited- he and his staff currently have at their disposal. It is not the current staff’s fault that the offensive line is the worst of my 50 year memory of Vol football or that the quarterback is arguably the most pedestrian of that period. They do however need to take responsibility for refusing to help or develop either. Butch Jones -unlike his immediate predecessors- recognizes how special this place can be, greatly appreciates the opportunity, works hard at his craft and can obviously sell a dream yet to be realized....[more]
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