John Adams: Pull for the Vols, of course, but root for Razorbacks, too

John Adams
Dave Martin/Associated Press
Arkansas coach Bobby Petrino talks with reporters Wednesday during SEC Football Media Days in Birmingham, Ala.

Photo by Dave Martin

Dave Martin/Associated Press Arkansas coach Bobby Petrino talks with reporters Wednesday during SEC Football Media Days in Birmingham, Ala.

Tennessee fans need to start pulling for another team.

I'm not suggesting they abandon the Vols. I'm merely pointing out the benefit of expanding their rooting interest.

Give second-year coach Derek Dooley another year or two to bolster his depth chart with quality recruits and the Vols should be ready to contend for an SEC divisional title. In the meantime, why not broaden your college football horizons this fall?

Pull for the Vols to win. Pull for a viable contender to win the SEC championship.

Choose whomever you wish. But the most logical choice is obvious.

I'll lead you there through the process of elimination.

Alabama is a consensus favorite to win the SEC and a popular pick to win the national title as well. It's also way too big a rival for UT fans to embrace.

And the more likely the Tide is to win another championship, the less embraceable it becomes.

Alabama fans were lined up about eight wide and nine deep Friday on the last day of SEC Football Media Days, hopeful of an autograph or at least a glimpse of coach Nick Saban. In an especially creepy moment, a woman decked in Tide garb — accentuated by a media pass — held a microphone in front of a 2-year-old. Another woman in Alabama colors took their picture.

Tennessee fans can't pull for that.

LSU is the next most qualified team to win the SEC's sixth consecutive national championship. It also has longtime Vols defensive coordinator John Chavis directing its defense.

But how could UT fans champion LSU's cause when the memory of last year's controversial loss in Tiger Stadium is agonizingly fresh?

South Carolina is worth considering. It has exciting players in Alshon Jeffery and Marcus Lattimore as well as underdog appeal since it has never won a conference championship in football.

However, it also has coach Steve Spurrier, who, despite his East Tennessee roots, has tormented the Vols too many times in the past to suddenly become a source of their affection.

You probably already have guessed where this is headed. It's not headed to Florida or Georgia, who are more apt to lose to the Vols than contend for a national title.

It's headed to Arkansas, a program on the rise that hasn't yet won enough to become a favorite, especially in a division where Alabama and LSU rank ahead of it. Not only are the Razorbacks a dark-horse contender, they should be the most entertaining team in the league with coach Bobby Petrino calling the offensive shots for all those talented running backs and wide receivers.

There's compelling history to consider with the Razorbacks. You would have to question the humanity of any UT fan who doesn't have a soft spot in his heart for the Hogs after what happened at Neyland Stadium in 1998.

They helped the Vols win a national championship that year. And until UT has the wherewithal to at least contend for another title, Arkansas could provide an appropriate alternative for your championship cheers.

In case you're interested, it's preferable to hold the "Woo" for a full eight seconds when chanting "Woo Pig Sooie."

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Comments » 56

Witch_Doctors writes:

Witch Doctor say good stuff Adams. Witch Doctor say they did help "give" us an NC.
Bones never lie.

jdcdjc writes:

I would never pull for a team that has a coach that left the Atlanta Falcons in mid season. He was in over his head in Atlanta but you do not bail out in the middle of anything, finish what you start, sorry but I cannot -pull for Arkansas with thier coach.

Volunteer-Varmint writes:

My two favorite teams are the Tennessee Volunteers and whoever is playing Floriduh...

Go Big Orange! Can't wait till fall. It's hot down here in he!!

DalTexVol writes:

Man, these Knoxville columnists write so many "mail it in" articles. I live in a major market so the sports writing is so much better, but still isn't there a modern day Tom Siler out there somewhere.

volbike writes:

John, I have defended you against the opinions of the knuckleheads who are only interested in homer colunms and columnist many times, but you were really digging deep to come up with this column.

DalTexVol writes:

A major story here is that Oklahoma and Texas A&M may be reconsidering their decision to remain in the Big 12 (or Big whatever it is now.) This is all because of the evil alliance between BEVO TV and ESPN. Not one mention of it here though--would make a better article than who we should root for besides the Vols.

BigOrangeSmoker writes:

how in the name of UT football can you come to a Tennessee football site and even consider telling us to root for another team ferpetesake,you beat all i ever seen adams

CoverOrange writes:

in response to Witch_Doctors:

Witch Doctor say good stuff Adams. Witch Doctor say they did help "give" us an NC.
Bones never lie.

Hate to disagree with the good doctor but there is reason to believe that UT still would have made the NC game even if the Vols had lost to Arkansas. Every other contender lost a game after that weekend, likely putting us back at the top or no lower than #2.

crockett1836 writes:

in response to BodeaneVol:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Arkansas could have prevented "giving" the game to the Vols...by having a two possession lead. They also could have prevented it by stopping Henry.

murrayvol writes:

in response to Witch_Doctors:

Witch Doctor say good stuff Adams. Witch Doctor say they did help "give" us an NC.
Bones never lie.

We should name a street after Clint Stoener. It's the right thing to do.

crockett1836 writes:

in response to CoverOrange:

Hate to disagree with the good doctor but there is reason to believe that UT still would have made the NC game even if the Vols had lost to Arkansas. Every other contender lost a game after that weekend, likely putting us back at the top or no lower than #2.

Ok, someone who has time to tweet, change fb status, or blog; please go to the web and find proof that most NChampions had lucky breaks. Remember, your opponent's mistakes in close games are sometimes due to intimidation. They just feel like they're supposed to lose.

murrayvol writes:

in response to jdcdjc:

I would never pull for a team that has a coach that left the Atlanta Falcons in mid season. He was in over his head in Atlanta but you do not bail out in the middle of anything, finish what you start, sorry but I cannot -pull for Arkansas with thier coach.

Give Petrino credit for knowing his departure would benefit both parties. Like Spurrier, Saban, and Davis before him, he's a college guy.

murrayvol writes:

in response to crockett1836:

Arkansas could have prevented "giving" the game to the Vols...by having a two possession lead. They also could have prevented it by stopping Henry.

They could also have prevented it by taking a couple of knees and punting.

CrankE writes:

I'll pull for John Adams to move to Fayetteville to pull for Arkansas. After all, he knows their cheer.

CrankE writes:

in response to murrayvol:

We should name a street after Clint Stoener. It's the right thing to do.

Or how about Billy Ratliff? You know, the guy who blasted Brandon Burlsworth backwards. Burlsworth, the guy who stepped on Sterno's foot. Sterno the guy who fumbled.

Oh, and don't forget the ref screwing the pooch on the safety. It should have been first and goal for UT from about the 2 yard line.

Arkansas didn't give that game away. Tennessee took it.

Witch_Doctors writes:

in response to CrankE:

Or how about Billy Ratliff? You know, the guy who blasted Brandon Burlsworth backwards. Burlsworth, the guy who stepped on Sterno's foot. Sterno the guy who fumbled.

Oh, and don't forget the ref screwing the pooch on the safety. It should have been first and goal for UT from about the 2 yard line.

Arkansas didn't give that game away. Tennessee took it.

Witch Doctor part of sports is luck. Witch Doctor say we've had plenty go against us, this one was magical along with a great season. Witch Doctor say we all agree no matter we take it! lol.
Bones never lie.

westennvol writes:

I'm a vol for life, but I do have a soft spot for the hogs. Plus UT has a lot of ties to u of a. We sent them john barnhill after he coached under neyland and was our interim coach during we II.

FWBVol writes:

in response to CrankE:

Or how about Billy Ratliff? You know, the guy who blasted Brandon Burlsworth backwards. Burlsworth, the guy who stepped on Sterno's foot. Sterno the guy who fumbled.

Oh, and don't forget the ref screwing the pooch on the safety. It should have been first and goal for UT from about the 2 yard line.

Arkansas didn't give that game away. Tennessee took it.

Thanks CrankE for setting the record straight. I'm glad I read through all the responses because I was about to post basically the same thing.

Arkansas didn't give UT anything that rainy November day in 1998 the team earned it.

Alwaysavol writes:

Not as long as Bobby Petrino is their coach.

nepperso#220348 writes:

Or, you can just root for the Vols. Unless you wannabe a douche-extraordinare like John Adams. What a whack job. Drivel, pure drivel.

vut56#231073 writes:

Okay, I heard Adams out, considered his viewpoints, and wanted to be fair. However, after due consideration, I can think of no logical reason to root for Arkansas. Don't like the sooey thing, don't like wild hogs, and no, feel no remorse over our win in '98. I hope all the SEC schools turn out good citizens, doctors, lawyers and young people who make their parents proud. But cheer their teams? Adams has sniffed too much liquid paper.

Doves writes:

In my opinion the Stoener fumble has been hyped too much over the years. If I remember correctly, our defense would have still had opportunity to stop the Hogs and give the ball back to the offense even without the fumble. And the way that our defense was playing that year, they probably would have.

Back to the article, another tie to Arkansas that I didn't see mentioned: former UT defensive ends coach Steve Caldwell is now coaching at Arkansas. He's a good guy.

And one more little thing, while we are talking about the championship year: Although every game was important, I don't think that the Arkansas game was the key game that year, nor even the national championship game. I think that the key game was the Florida game. (What a game!) And the key player was Al Wilson...forced three fumbles if I remember correctly. It's great that Tee Martin has been honored for his role that year, but I think that Al Wilson was the heart and soul of that championship team.

Wilhelm16 writes:

I cheer for the Vols and only the Vols. I might applaud if Vandy beats anyone other than UT because their the home town team. However, I will never follow and cheer for another team. Why not believe that our Vols are a viable candidate? How have you lasted this long in Knoxville Adams?

NickDanger-ThirdEye writes:

in response to CrankE:

Or how about Billy Ratliff? You know, the guy who blasted Brandon Burlsworth backwards. Burlsworth, the guy who stepped on Sterno's foot. Sterno the guy who fumbled.

Oh, and don't forget the ref screwing the pooch on the safety. It should have been first and goal for UT from about the 2 yard line.

Arkansas didn't give that game away. Tennessee took it.

amen. that is exactly what happened.

ULTIMATEVOLUNTEER writes:

I'm tired of hearing that Arkansas gave TN the game in 1998. Anyone that saw the game knows the referees blew the call on the punter kicking the ball out of the back of the endzone which was supposed to give ut the ball there and not the safety. (ut's choice) Which would have resulted in a TD with Henry and Stoener would have been irrelevant.

cloudodust writes:

John, did you bump your head recently..?

Bufforange00 writes:

Stupid article.

Volsking writes:

When pigs fly

tree_em_smokey writes:

in response to Volunteer-Varmint:

My two favorite teams are the Tennessee Volunteers and whoever is playing Floriduh...

Go Big Orange! Can't wait till fall. It's hot down here in he!!

I heard that!!!

648rwhp writes:

I have my undergrad from UT (2003) and grad from Ark (2006) so I might be the only person here who truly agrees with this article…well, maybe only the title. A 99% Vol fan and a 1% Razorback fan. None of the AR students were ever happy with me wearing my beautiful Orange colors around campus and you can bet I did have a T, somewhere on my person, every day.

hueypilot writes:

Clint Stoerner is my alltime favorite hawg.

I can't root for any other SEC team. It's like every Vandy fan roots for Alabama as my "other team" since the best they can hope for is to win a couple of conference games a year and hope not to get embarassed by someone like Connecticut.
Thanks but I'll wait patiently till Dooley brings the Vols back into contention.

hcjournals#206623 writes:

Ridiculous premise. Since we aren't good enough yet, pull for some else in addition to us? Please try a little harder to fill the space....

ThirdSaturdayInOctober writes:

in response to BodeaneVol:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Or perhaps Fulmer might have remained more hungry and not have let things slide. Conjecture on both our parts.

ThirdSaturdayInOctober writes:

in response to CoverOrange:

Hate to disagree with the good doctor but there is reason to believe that UT still would have made the NC game even if the Vols had lost to Arkansas. Every other contender lost a game after that weekend, likely putting us back at the top or no lower than #2.

Still, undefeated and concensus has a nice ring.

stevefrommemphis writes:

"Alabama fans were lined up about eight wide and nine deep Friday on the last day of SEC Football Media Days, hopeful of an autograph or at least a glimpse of coach Nick Saban. In an especially creepy moment, ...."

THIS is why the SEC headquarters needs to be moved out of Birmingham to a neutral site, like Atlanta. This weekend, scores of SEC administrators went to church or synagogue in Slive's case with Alabama fans. Bama fans are their friends and neighbors. Please understand that I am absolutely not saying that they would intentionally be influenced to favor the Tide -- but subconsciously? Read the book Scorecasting which shows studies saying that the home team gets the benefit of the doubt a statistically significant portion of the time, and you will understand my concern.

John Adams, it's easy for me to find another SEC team to pull for. It's a different team every week. It's whoever is playing the Alabama Crimson Tide.

SummittsCourt writes:

John Adams, you are an idiot!!!!!!!!

I will never, under no circumstance, not for one second pull for another SEC team other than the Vols!!!

This is just another stupid article written and posted by you.

Go Vols!

SummittsCourt writes:

"They helped the Vols win a national championship that year."

This is another stupid statement as well.

The Arkansas QB did fumble the ball, but why? Because our D-Line pushed their O-Line back so easily he had to scramble which caused him to stumble and fumble.

BUT

The defense had to cover the ball, then the Offense had to drive 40+ yards to score the winning TD

BUT

That should have never had to happen.

On their previous possession: they had to punt and their punter kicked the ball out of the end zone giving us 2 points...

BUT

By rule, since the punter kicked the ball UT should have been given the ball at their 5 yard line, which had we scored we would have been ahead anyway.

NO - Arkansas didn't help us win a National Title that year, remember the facts as they happened.

Don't try to cheapen the accomplishment of that team with stupid things like "they helped us win the title".

Classof72 writes:

"Tennessee fans need to start pulling for another team."

John Adams needs to start writing for another newspaper. Go John Adams! Please. Just go.

Live long and prosper, but do it somewhere else. Fayetteville is lovely; Birmingham misses you. Or, just put your show on the road and spread the droppings of your wisdom as Johnny Appleseed spread blossoms in his wake. Just let us see your diminishing silhouette against the Big Orange sunset.

Under the wide and starry sky,
Pack your bags and say, "Goodbye."
It's time.

vol49 writes:

in response to Doves:

In my opinion the Stoener fumble has been hyped too much over the years. If I remember correctly, our defense would have still had opportunity to stop the Hogs and give the ball back to the offense even without the fumble. And the way that our defense was playing that year, they probably would have.

Back to the article, another tie to Arkansas that I didn't see mentioned: former UT defensive ends coach Steve Caldwell is now coaching at Arkansas. He's a good guy.

And one more little thing, while we are talking about the championship year: Although every game was important, I don't think that the Arkansas game was the key game that year, nor even the national championship game. I think that the key game was the Florida game. (What a game!) And the key player was Al Wilson...forced three fumbles if I remember correctly. It's great that Tee Martin has been honored for his role that year, but I think that Al Wilson was the heart and soul of that championship team.

Agree w/you about Al. Game changer. Recently saw him at a high school graduation and he still looks like he could play.

AC_84 writes:

in response to Doves:

In my opinion the Stoener fumble has been hyped too much over the years. If I remember correctly, our defense would have still had opportunity to stop the Hogs and give the ball back to the offense even without the fumble. And the way that our defense was playing that year, they probably would have.

Back to the article, another tie to Arkansas that I didn't see mentioned: former UT defensive ends coach Steve Caldwell is now coaching at Arkansas. He's a good guy.

And one more little thing, while we are talking about the championship year: Although every game was important, I don't think that the Arkansas game was the key game that year, nor even the national championship game. I think that the key game was the Florida game. (What a game!) And the key player was Al Wilson...forced three fumbles if I remember correctly. It's great that Tee Martin has been honored for his role that year, but I think that Al Wilson was the heart and soul of that championship team.

i agree 100%

tenndave writes:

Who in their right mind would actually pull for anyone but the VOLS? Now when it is all over with and an SEC team is in the BCS Title game, then and only then will I pull for them and that is only for the conference, not team. WIN or LOSE, I pull for the VOLS! NUFF SAID!!

tenndave writes:

BY the way, DUMB ARTICLE! Must be a really slow day!

arkyvol writes:

as a u.t. alumni who has been marooned in the far west of arkansas (ft. smith, land of rooster cogburn and lucky ned pepper) for thirty five years and the father of an arkansas alum, i'd choose the hogs over the gators or the war eagles any day of the week, but don't expect the favor to be returned. arkansas has a deeply ingrained hatred of all things orange and bearing the initials, u.t. it goes beyond the 98 game. it started with the 71 liberty bowl. in switching conferences the hogs traded one annual humiliation by a u.t. for another one. i will give you this: the hog's hiring of petrino versus hammy's hiring of anyone is a stark reminder of the value of competence.

brokendownoldvol writes:

Wow, a sports columnist can't find something to write about before the season? I can't believe I just wasted my time reading that.

UTKin1992 writes:

Pull for another team? Mmmmm...no. Not happening.

tovolny writes:

I did not read this artile, but I did read the responses. John Adams, it appears, didn't have much to say. Was he trying to be cute to entertain us(?)...maybe, but he enjoys entertaining himself while he strikes the UT fans over the head.

Do you wonder what is going on as the Vols keep working out preparing for a wonderful season? Do you really want to know what John Adams thinks? Aren't we glad there are other ways to obtain information on sports at UT. DO YOU KNOW ANYBODY THAT ACTUALLY SUBSCRIBES TO GVX247? I only know one, and he calls me to get recruiting information. Do you think posters like me should just go away? I do...I can't stand reading stuff like this.

keviningeorgia writes:

in response to simmsagain:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

I don't care how much success Petrino has in Ark, I'm glad he never came here. It wasn't the fact he quit on his team in Atlanta, coaches leave all the time. It was how he did it. Within a week of telling Arthur Blank he wasn't going anywhere while the season was being played out, he is singing Soooohie pig with the Ark. folks celebrating his new job. At least Lame (USC will wish he had gone somewhere else one day.....)Kiffin stood in front of the team and admitted he was bailing out. This guy left a note taped to the Falcons players lockers and dissappeared.... What a chicken sh___! If the folks in Arkansas want that type character for a coach, God bless 'em. He'll never win enough to take the stench off how he did his players, fans and ownership in Atlanta in my book.

givehim6 writes:

Arkansas? The only time I root for them is when they play bama. I do not dislike the hogs I just can not picture myself saying GO HOGES! UT has a shot at been better this year so my blood runs true orange! GO VOLS!

Down_The_Field writes:

in response to BodeaneVol:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

they didn't give the game to the vols. billy ratliff drove the guard into the quarter back and caused a fumble. every once in a while, there's a brainless turd troll like you who knows nothing of the game and brings this up to discount the 1998 season.

by the way, do you remember the blown punt call in the game? the hogs elligally kicked the ball through the endzone and the vos were given a safety when it should have been 1st and goal vols on the 5 yd line. the refs cheated us out of 7 pts. the lead official called fulmer the following week and admitted fault.

orangeman1 writes:

in response to Down_The_Field:

they didn't give the game to the vols. billy ratliff drove the guard into the quarter back and caused a fumble. every once in a while, there's a brainless turd troll like you who knows nothing of the game and brings this up to discount the 1998 season.

by the way, do you remember the blown punt call in the game? the hogs elligally kicked the ball through the endzone and the vos were given a safety when it should have been 1st and goal vols on the 5 yd line. the refs cheated us out of 7 pts. the lead official called fulmer the following week and admitted fault.

These people kill me that cant even give credit where its due. They forget that UT still rushed the ball almost 50 yds into the end zone after the fumble and that UT wouldve had time to get the ball back even if he had just been sacked. Thats just the breaks. Fumbles happen all the time and alot of the time they go against UT.

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