The day after the world clock rolled over from 1999 to 2000, Nebraska rolled over Tennessee in the Fiesta Bowl in Tempe, Ariz.
For the Vols, it was an inauspicious way to start the new century.
In hindsight, it also could be interpreted as an omen that the coming decade would not be as prosperous for UT as the one just ended.
There's one game left on the scorecard, tonight in the Chick-fil-A Bowl against Virginia Tech.
On the whole, it's been a decade most football programs would gladly embrace.
The Vols are 83-44, a .654 winning percentage.
They've earned their way to a bowl eight of the 10 years. But won only three of them thus far.
They've played in three SEC championship games. But won none.
The school record book has been considerably updated since 1999.
Travis Henry became the leading career rusher in 2000. In 2001, Travis Stephens broke the season rushing mark.
That same year Kelly Washington rewrote the single-game record for receiving yardage against LSU. In 2006 Robert Meachem accumulated the most receiving yards ever in a season.
Between 2001-2004 Dustin Colquitt played in more games (52) than any Vol in history.
Here is a look at the top 10 stories in Tennessee football for past decade:
1. Fulmer Fired: For every coach, no matter how successful, the end eventually comes - Joe Paterno being an apparent exception.
The Phillip Fulmer Era ended hard, on Nov. 3, 2008, in an emotional press conference. After 150 wins, two SEC titles and the 1998 national championship, Fulmer was undone by a downward spiral that denied him the opportunity to walk off into the sunset on his own terms.
2. Kiffin Shakes It Up: Lane Kiffin, hired Dec. 1, 2008, came from outside the UT family tree and has been a jolt of fresh energy, to say the least.
The 34-year-old Kiffin has generated media attention in almost every conceivable way during a 7-5 debut season. For better or worse, folks are talking about the Vols.
Whatever fans might think of Kiffin, they can't accuse him of being dull.
3. A Blown Opportunity: Only three years after their '98 national title, the Vols were on the verge of playing for another one.
All they had to do to get to the Rose Bowl was take care of business against underdog LSU in the SEC championship game on Dec. 8, 2001.
But the Tigers' shocking 31-20 upset pulled the plug and many argue that UT football hasn't been the same since.
4. Stunner in The Swamp: The Vols' biggest win of the decade came one week before the afore-mentioned worst loss.
The terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, forced UT and Florida to reschedule for Dec. 1, a season finale. Tennessee, a heavy underdog, shocked the Gators 34-32, in Gainesville, to advance to the SEC championship game against LSU.
They didn't know it at the time, but it would be the final game at Florida of their 1990s nemesis Steve Spurrier.
5. The 'Perfect Storm' of '05: UT began the 2005 season considered a national title contender. After a typical September (3-1, a loss to Florida), things fell apart in October.
The Vols lost five of their final seven games. Offensive coordinator Randy Sanders resigned after a 16-15 loss to South Carolina on Oct. 29. When Vanderbilt beat the Vols in Neyland Stadium on Nov. 19, a 16-year streak of bowl games was toast.
6. Cutcliffe's Return: To cure the offensive woes of '05, the Vols had a handy remedy. David Cutcliffe, offensive coordinator in the 1990s heyday, was available for a return engagement after being fired at Ole Miss.
Cutcliffe returned in 2006 and resurrected the career of quarterback Erik Ainge. The Vols went 19-6 in 2006-07. During those two seasons Ainge passed for a combined 6,511 yards. Only Peyton Manning had a better two-year total.
Cutcliffe left for another head-coaching job at Duke in 2008 and the offensive malaise resumed.
7. Big John: The most prestigious individual award garnered by a Vol in the decade was John Henderson's Outland Trophy in 2000.
The defensive tackle from Nashville was voted nation's top defensive player. He didn't repeat in 2001 but was again a first-team All-American.
8. Eric Berry: No Vol was more exciting - or more fundamentally sound - in the decade than safety Eric Berry.
Likely playing his final collegiate game tonight, Berry is a two-time consensus All-American and added the 2009 Jim Thorpe Award to his collection.
Thanks to a fantastic highlight- reel of plays, he nearly toppled the NCAA record for interception return yardage in his first two seasons. He could still get it tonight.
9. Not-So-Hot 'Lanta: The Georgia Dome has been where seasons go to die in the 21st Century.
The Vols are 0-3 in SEC championship games: 2001, 2004, 2007.
Adding insult to injury, two other seasons, 2002 and 2003, ended there with a whimper in poorly-played Peach Bowl losses.
10. The Streak Lives: One thing didn't change in the decade. The Vols were 10-0 against Kentucky, prevailing in two overtime wins in Lexington to do it.
It's only Kentucky, but when you end the decade with the longest rivalry winning streak in the nation - 25 years - it counts for something.