1. Trick or Cheer?: Tonight is the first time East Tennesseans have had to choose between Neyland Stadium and trick-or-treating. The Vols are 11-2 on Halloween but haven’t played a home game on Oct. 31 since 1942, long before night games were in vogue. UT’s most recent Halloween game was in 1998, a 49-14 rout of South Carolina on the way to a national championship.
2. Who Kicks?: Daniel Lincoln’s quadriceps injury has shrouded Tennessee’s kicking duties in mystery. Lincoln, whose overtime field goal beat South Carolina in 2007, hasn’t kicked all week, so Chad Cunningham could add field goals to his punt and kickoff chores. Cunningham has kicked field goals in scrimmages but never in a game. At least Terrence Cody won’t be in the house.
3. Homeland Security: South Carolina has won only once in 14 visits to Neyland Stadium. That was 2005, Steve Spurrier’s first season with the Gamecocks. But the 2009 Vols have played better on the road than at home, with the exception of a 45-19 rout of Georgia on Oct. 10. If Tennessee can replicate that effort, it should get the W.
4. The Young and The Tall: Tennessee’s secondary has to measure up against two tall Gamecock freshmen. Alshon Jeffery is 6-foot-3 true freshman with 24 catches (and five TDs). Tori Gurley is a 6-5 redshirt freshman with 21 catches.
5. The 200 Club: The Vols have had two 200-yard rushing games — against Western Kentucky and Ohio. Reaching that plateau against an SEC opponent would be big. Alabama and Kentucky have both hit the Gamecocks for a Deuce. South Carolina State wasn’t far short at 170. Something to shoot for.
— Mike Strange