1. Berry Last Chance: It would be poetic justice to see Eric Berry pick off a Virginia Tech pass and return it 8 (or 80) yards to end his career with the NCAA record for interception return yardage. Berry started his junior year needing a measly 15 yards and, to everyone's great surprise, is still 8 short as he points to the NFL draft a year ahead of schedule.
2. Cure The Curse: The Georgia Dome has been Tennessee's personal haunted house in the 21st Century. The carnage includes 0-3 in SEC championship games and 0-2 in Chick-fil-A Bowls. It's worse - the basketball Vols are 3-6 in SEC Tournament games at the Dome, never surviving past the quarterfinal round. The last time a UT fan left the Dome with a smile was 1998, on the road to the national championship.
3. Who's Kicking?: It's never a good thing to go into a bowl game as an underdog with your placekicking duties unsettled. Based on unimpressive practice-field results it's unclear whether Daniel Lincoln or Devan Mathis (or even punter Chad Cunningham) will attempt field goals. Maybe Lane Kiffin just goes for it on fourth down.
4. Tech's Dynamic Duo: There's no mystery who makes Virginia Tech's offense go. Monte Kiffin and the UT defense have to contain tailback Ryan Williams (1,538 yards, 19 TDs) and quarterback Tyrod Taylor (2,102 passing yards) who has passed for 13 touchdowns and run for four more. Do that and the Hokies will struggle to score points.
5. SEC vs. ACC: The SEC likes to think of itself as clearly superior to the ACC - in football. Not so in 2008, when it was a 6-6 stalemate in head-to-head play. This year the SEC has a 5-3 edge (including an Alabama win over Virginia Tech in the Georgia Dome). A Tennessee win tonight would deny the ACC any wiggle room for yapping. A Tech win, however, would make the two-year score sheet an indecisive 11-10.
- Mike Strange