~ 27 November 2004 ~

Averting Embarrassment

Vols 37, Wildcats 31

About the only thing worse than Jefferson Pilot’s game coverage today was the play of Tennessee’s defense. Allowing Kentucky QB Shane Boyd to do whatever he pleased, the Vol defense seemed to be testing the ability of our offense to continue to put up points. The Vol offense didn’t necessarily shine, but Cedric Houston and Gerald Riggs seemed to be playing Kentucky. Kentucky bags another of what it is best for achieving—a moral victory. To the Vols credit, however, they didn’t panic and came back to seal the actual victory.

Two heart attacks into this game, the only relief I found in the prospect of next week’s SEC Championship game is that Brent Schaeffer is projected to return in some capacity. I think he’s poses more of a threat to a cagey Auburn defense than Clausen. I’ll leave the ball in Johnny Chavis’ court to decide whether the Vol defense is ready to again face the now rested and fattened Auburn offensive line (the Tigers were off this weekend). The Vols have the talent to beat Auburn when implemented effectively.

On a side note, the Jefferson Pilot coverage of today’s game really was the poorest coverage of a football game I’ve ever seen. The announcers didn’t know what half they were in, the scoreboard operator gave Kentucky points when Tennessee scored, the cameramen remained focused on the kicker while the rest of us wondered what happened on the play, they would return from commercial breaks mid-play, and the clincher was the 6-minute interview with South Carolina’s athletic director during a key Tennessee drive.

I’m happy that JP Sports broadcasts these games, so I can see them way up here in Kentucky land—but it was so irritating that at times I contemplated forking over the $4.95 for Yahoo and listening to the game on the internet. Oh how I miss John Ward…

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