Notebook: Cordarrelle Patterson draws taunting flags for second week in a row

Tennessee wide receiver Cordarrelle Patterson carries the ball for a touchdown that was called back during the game against Vanderbilt at Vanderbilt Stadium in Nashville on Saturday, Nov. 17, 2012. (AMY SMOTHERMAN BURGESS/NEWS SENTINEL)

Photo by Amy Smotherman Burgess, Knoxville News Sentinel

Tennessee wide receiver Cordarrelle Patterson carries the ball for a touchdown that was called back during the game against Vanderbilt at Vanderbilt Stadium in Nashville on Saturday, Nov. 17, 2012. (AMY SMOTHERMAN BURGESS/NEWS SENTINEL)

NASHVILLE — On his way to an apparent touchdown Saturday at Vanderbilt, Tennessee receiver Cordarrelle Patterson turned his body toward a defender and backpedaled his way into the end zone.

Two nearby officials quickly dug into their belts and flung flags in Patterson's direction, marking the second week in a row that Patterson has drawn an unsportsmanlike penalty while dashing to a touchdown.

Last week against Missouri, Patterson's touchdown was called back, but Tennessee scored anyway when Tyler Bray hit Mychal Rivera in the back of the end zone. On Saturday, Tennessee was flagged for an illegal man downfield, so the penalty on Patterson was declined.

Even so, the two costly mental gaffes could have cost the Vols 14 points and raise questions about Patterson's maturity that NFL teams are certain to explore during draft evaluations this spring.

Patterson still turned in some of his usual highlight-reel plays, but he also seemed to run the wrong route on a handful of plays. When Bray threw an interception in the third quarter, Patterson appeared to be running in the wrong direction. He also may have drawn the ire of coaches when he failed to chase the play after the interception.

n After his punt return for a touchdown in the fourth quarter, Patterson has now scored four different ways — by punt return, kickoff return, receiving and rushing.

He's the first player in the Bowl Subdivision to achieve that feat since 2008.

n Defensive back Eric Gordon missed Saturday's game with a knee injury, further weakening Tennessee's fragile secondary.

Freshman cornerbacks Daniel Gray (illness) and Deion Bonner (suspension) also missed the game, leaving extended opportunities for junior Jaron Toney and senior Marsalis Teague.

Running back Devrin Young did not travel with the team for "personal reasons," Tennessee said.

n The seven Tennessee players who hail from the Nashville area served as captains for the Vols. Fullback Ben Bartholomew, defensive back Rod Wilks, offensive linemen Alex Bullard, James Stone and Antonio "Tiny" Richardson and receivers Zach Rogers and Jacob Carter were at midfield before the game for the coin flip.

n Vanderbilt became the fourth SEC program to play on an artificial surface when it switched to synthetic grass this summer. The Commodores had played on grass since the 1999 season. Before that, they played on an old-fashioned AstroTurf.

Missouri, Ole Miss and Arkansas also play on artificial turf.

n For the second week in a row, Tennessee's defense played well in the first half before quickly reverting to form after halftime.

The Vols allowed a 77-yard run on the first play of the third quarter last week against Missouri. On Saturday, Vanderbilt had runs of 29 yards and 47 yards (76 total) on its first drive of the third quarter.

Tennessee started the game ominously, allowing a 72-yard run on the first play from scrimmage. But Vandy managed only 80 yards on the next 30 snaps of the first half.

n Tennessee attempted a fake punt in the third quarter Saturday. Punter Michael Palardy got off a poor throw, but even a completed pass might have been short of a first down.

Vandy took over at Tennessee's 19, making it a risky gamble for Tennessee coach Derek Dooley. But Byron Moore's interception in the end zone kept the Commodores from scoring.

The last time the Vols attempted a fake punt was Oct. 22, 2011, at Alabama.

Evan Woodbery covers Tennessee football. Follow him at www.Twitter.com/TennesseeBeat.

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Comments » 42

jobrando#216494 writes:

CP to NFL...Real raw talent

BankerVol writes:

Really Really Good and Really Really Stupid

ReVolver writes:

He was lookin back at the flag to see what happened...he shouldn't have been, but he was.

RaineyVol writes:

He is basically saying I can taunt because I am the only good thing on this team. So much talent.

fearthehound writes:

Reminds me of 'The Future'. He needs to do some research and see how that all turned out.

jacksontnbob writes:

Can't blame him because his scoring plays have been one of the few good things our team produced all year. He's the highest draft pick we have. Too bad he's gone, but I would be too.

tedstryker1980 writes:

I wish I thought CP would be here next year.

TitanandVolfan4life writes:

That was proof to the NFL that he's very immature and he doesn't know the playbook and can't run routes worth a phooey.

NFL draft stock is going down and he badly needs another year in college or he'll lose many Millions of $$$ on his 1st NFL contract.

He has talent galore and is a great kick returner but he has lots to learn and to prove to the NFL before he'll be seen as a good WR and not just a kick returner.

VFL...GBO!!!

Vol_in_Mich writes:

Pickey, Pickey, Pickey!
All in all, I thought the zebras were pretty good to the Vols last night. Musta felt sorry for us.

GBO - Wait till year after next!

vol98champ writes:

Can you imagine these three NFL wannabes playing for John Gruden? I wonder when was the last time the "number one" rated wide receiver was hit in the head by a pass in the end zone. Maybe a great coach Gruden/Petrino could wake up these characters and turn them into football players, but there would be enough expletive deleted phrases uttered to sink a battleship.

cgbtn writes:

Sadly, we see bahavior just like CP's on every TD scored in the NFL. That is why I record games and hit FF when the refs raise their arms. I don't see why NFL-like bahavior should affect CP's NFL prospects.

ponkey writes:

I'm sick and tired of being sick and tired...!!!!

shipperman#280095 writes:

This is the dude that cannot come back because he doesn't bother to attend classes

OldVols68 writes:

Two immature brats indicate more lack of ability to coach on the part of Dooley and staff. Total lack of defense can be blamed on Hart and Sunseri. Does anyone think Sunseri is a better defensive coordinator than Justin Wilcox?????

richvol writes:

This is indicative of the overall lack of discipline of this team. Patterson is not only the ONLY ONE to have this call against him this year...he's done it twice...moron.

Fan4TN writes:

Our next video: Decade of Decline. This had been the worst decline of a program in college history. Who's at the wheel?

CrankE writes:

Our players are playing exactly the way they are coached and doing exactly what they are taught.

Anybody still think Dooley should have been retained after losing to Kentucky last year?

Madkels writes:

Get off of CP. he's the best player on this miserable team and will be playing on Sundays. Besides, these rules have crossed the line to stupidity. No celebration, leave the field when your helmet pops off, I could go on.

I didn't see it as taunting as much as him having fun. Real taunting is walking up to an opposing player and getting in his grill. Not high stepping into the end zone backwards.

BeRealistic writes:

Such acts will get you on the headhunters list in NFL.

dk writes:

I don't like any "hot" dogging it by players who have yet to prove that they can be team players. Especially players who hot dog it on a losing team. Coaches should play some Barry Sanders tape from his TDs to show players how they need to act. Incredible runs and then just hand the ball to the referee and go to the bench. Act like you have done that before.

pj_ladyvolnMI writes:

I agree that he was turning to see why the flag was thrown - which was a bad idea. He's a good kid...that I'd love to see come back next year.

wallingdad writes:

in response to cgbtn:

Sadly, we see bahavior just like CP's on every TD scored in the NFL. That is why I record games and hit FF when the refs raise their arms. I don't see why NFL-like bahavior should affect CP's NFL prospects.

that is what I was thinking too. He will fit right in with all the other prima donna hot dogs who strut and pound their chest even when their team may be behind by 40 points. the score really is second to "aint i pretty?

oldvoltimer62 writes:

Don't come down on CP too hard he hasn't had a coach these past two years to just say CP quit strutting and just give the ball to the Ref especially when trailing in the game.

jt45 writes:

I really like watching CP in the open field, its amazing how good he is at slipping open field tackles but last night he wasnt acting right either. After the interception he just stood still and watched the rest of the team go after the Vandy player. The offense seemed to be in another zone (twilight zone). You would think they they had a private meeting and decided to throw in the towel, judging by how they played.

One of the worst games ive ever tried to watch.

Maybe Vandy Spiked the water, something sure didnt seem right. The blank stare by the whole team (coaches included). Throwing to no one by Bray. Personnel switching by the coaches. Where was Rivera ? He had a great game against Mizzou but I didnt even see him last night.

Sir_Spanky writes:

Tennessee's obviously not well coached. That's been apparent for some time now. But they're also not a very disciplined group. CP is just one example. I'm afraid this "change the culture" thing we heard about when DD arrived was more like a "smoke-n-mirrors" thing.

SummittsCourt writes:

Don't worry folks, he'll be in the NFL next year. They don't really care that much about a player's "maturity" - they care more about his talent.

UT will be worse next year, new coach or not. It's going to be a long next couple of years.

sportsdoc2016 writes:

in response to ANYONE_BUT_LIBS:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Overhyped? He's the only decent exciting player on this sorry team.

Bray goes on a practice squad & never plays an NFL down.

pms151 writes:

He like the rest of the team have no confidence in the coaches. He might stay around if we find some one else besides the Haslam family to hire our coaches. We need brains not money to make a decision. In other words keep those idiots out of the equation Dave Hart and get someone in here that can win. You need to pay Chucky everything he needs to get him here. We need someone here that can recruit nationally!!!!!!

AZ_Vol writes:

in response to CrankE:

Our players are playing exactly the way they are coached and doing exactly what they are taught.

Anybody still think Dooley should have been retained after losing to Kentucky last year?

Who brought CP over?

What do you think Dooley could do without NCAA and SEC distractions hovering over his ability?

Do you ever read anything related to the Vols except what happens on the field during practice and games, and this site?

nocleats writes:

Its exactly why CP needs at least 1 more year of college.. In addition to learning how to run a perfect route( he doesnt) which the NFL demands on every single play, as well as learning how to beat press coverage (he struggles at best) and also learning more than 50% of an offense ( not just leaning on talent) he also just needs more reps at the SEC level and he needs to MATURE (you know GROW UP AND ACTLIKE A MAN) Then he would be a top 5 draft pick guaranteed to make big millions as opposed to a risky 3rd round who whould make nfl scale money if he is not cut for the earlier mentioned flaws.

ULTIMATEVOLUNTEER writes:

Where's the crime in running backwards? I saw db's running backwards all game and they didn't get flagged.

DavidB writes:

We keep hearing grudens name but here is a question to consider. When was the last time Gruden sat in a recruits living room? My thought is hire someone that has been out recruiting this year. If its a big name that's a plus and they will call those recruits to flip to Tennessee.

utbaby#215635 writes:

There seems to be a reluctance to get in a star players face when he does something that hurts the team. Would Saben be reluctant? I don't think so. The next coach will let that happen once and after he takes his foot out of CP's (or next star) butt, he'll think more before doing that a 2nd time. A hard a__ disciplinarian will help. A really creative offensive mind will be great.

SteelerNation writes:

No chance of CP coming back next season. Rumor has it his grades are so bad he couldn't come back if he wanted. Now we know why he was in juco anyways.

wigmeister writes:

Immature and not ready for the big show, but the rumor mill says grades are so bad he wouldn't be playing for us anyway!

Pipe_Down_Otis writes:

With about 7 mins to go the camera showed Bray, Hunter and Patterson sitting on the bench pouting. They acted like it was all somebody elses fault about everything. I'm sick of seeing all these egos just ruin a once proud program.

voodoo101 writes:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

OrangePride writes:

I think, much like Bray, CP does not play with a lot of discipline.....emotion, heart? Absolutely, just lacks that mental discipline that will come with a little more time. Unfortunately, I think CP is out of Tennessee time...he will likely enter the draft. But..we will see who the new coach is and whether he can convince CP to stay and improve his market price with one more year. Of all the coaches being mentioned, only Gruden would have that kind of cred. BUT CP has been one of this season's bright lights....I have really enjoyed watching him play!

BolivrBob writes:

Both of those calls were nothing but pure unadulterated BOVINE EXCREMENT! A someone else has said, I hear he is not attending class and would not have even been eligible to play in a bowl game, if we had earned one. He's A first round draft pick anyway. When he has the ball, things happen.

mrvol2u writes:

Somebody needs to have the old "act like you have been there before" speech with Mr. Patterson.

OrangePride writes:

in response to BolivrBob:

Both of those calls were nothing but pure unadulterated BOVINE EXCREMENT! A someone else has said, I hear he is not attending class and would not have even been eligible to play in a bowl game, if we had earned one. He's A first round draft pick anyway. When he has the ball, things happen.

I don't know about his academic attendance, but it hasn't appeared that he has spent enough time on his playbook and routes, that's certain. Not sure how much film he studies either....he seems to rely on his rather significant athleticism to win the day...but then this all goes back to discipline doesn't it. NFL folks will be happy to have him if he decides to go that way. I will be happy to have him if he stays.

cobragolfer writes:

in response to shipperman#280095:

This is the dude that cannot come back because he doesn't bother to attend classes

He flunked out of another school, but UT welcomed him with open arms. Dooley should have put this guy in his place... right along with Bray. They both think they are "IT". Bring that attitude down a few notches!!!

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