First, Nick Saban hoisting a crystal football. Then, John Calipari basking in that one shining moment amid a waterfall of confetti.
At least Tennessee fans were spared the sight of Geno on a ladder with scissors Tuesday night.
That would have just about been more rivalry humble pie than Vol fans could stomach in one year.
But there's one man who, while he might feel Tennessee's pain in an avuncular way, is grinning ear to ear.
You might have noticed Monday night that Mike Slive had a primo courtside seat for Kentucky's national championship win over Kansas.
He deserved it. As commissioner of the biggest, baddest conference in the land he can sit anywhere he wants.
The SEC is the proverbial 800-pound gorilla in collegiate sports. The league currently holds the national title in the three marquee men's sports: Kentucky in hoops, Alabama in football and South Carolina in baseball.
Kentucky's first NCAA hoops title since 1998 isn't a blip. It confirms a trend. Of the past 20 championships held in football, men's basketball and baseball, the SEC has won 12.
The 2012 College World Series has yet to be contested. Since Florida is ranked No. 1, 13-of-21 isn't far-fetched.
Four different schools have combined to win six consecutive BCS football titles. Florida won back-to-back basketball titles in 2006-07. South Carolina has won the past two baseball titles — by beating
runner-up Florida last year — to succeed 2009 champ LSU.
As for women's hoops, which has certainly achieved marquee status, the SEC is still a one-horse league.
Tennessee is that horse, winning its seventh and eighth titles in 2007-08. No other SEC school has cut down nets since women joined the NCAA fold in 1982.
Does any other league approach the SEC's record in the big three men's arenas? In a word, no.
The Big Ten hasn't won it all in football since Ohio State in 2002, in basketball since Michigan State in 2000 or in baseball since the Buckeyes in 1966.
Of the 14 titles in the BCS football era, the SEC has won eight and no other league more than two.
Since relative league newbie Arkansas won the NCAA basketball title in 1994, the SEC has six championships to the ACC's five and four for the Big East.
Since Georgia ended an SEC drought and won the College World Series in 1990, the SEC has won nine of 22 championships. No other league can boast more than three.
So, if you're Tennessee, where do you fit in this band of well-armed brothers?
Other than the 1998 BCS football title, the Vols haven't contributed to the booty. Their historic rivals, on the other hand, have contributed plenty — with no end in sight.
In Saban, Alabama football is helmed by the unquestioned king of the game, The Vols are 1-7 against Saban, including 0-5 in his Crimson motif.
The marriage of Calipari and Kentucky merged two of UT's most intense hoops dislikes. The Vols at least played even with Calipari at Memphis, going 3-3. They're 1-6 since he traded up to Kentucky.
Tennessee, naturally, hopes to upgrade its marquee programs to championship level. It has the budget, but so far lacks the will to pay the king's ransom required to interest a Saban or Calipari.
In the meantime, UT can cash those SEC checks. And on the way to the bank, don't begrudge Mike Slive his grin.