Frustration mounts after UT misses another chance to 'get over the hump'

Tennessee quarterback Tyler Bray (8) leaves the field after Mississippi State defeated the Vols 41-31 at Davis Wade Stadium in Starkville, Miss., Saturday, Oct. 13, 2012. (ADAM BRIMER/NEWS SENTINEL)

Photo by Adam Brimer

Tennessee quarterback Tyler Bray (8) leaves the field after Mississippi State defeated the Vols 41-31 at Davis Wade Stadium in Starkville, Miss., Saturday, Oct. 13, 2012. (ADAM BRIMER/NEWS SENTINEL)

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Tennessee quarterback Tyler Bray, frustrated by another close loss to an SEC opponent, sent out a tweet about "bandwagon fans" not long after the Vols were defeated 41-31 by Mississippi State Saturday night.

When the Vols returned home to Knoxville and the sun rose on campus Sunday morning, Tennessee's iconic Rock had a new paint job that listed criticisms of coach Derek Dooley and called for his firing.

Bray deleted his tweet and later apologized to Tennessee fans. The Rock was quickly repainted. But the fissures in a season that started with so much optimism are starting to grow, and the next two weeks will make the Vols' aspiration of "getting over the hump" with a big SEC win all the more difficult.

Tennessee (3-3, 0-3 SEC) plays No. 1 Alabama (6-0, 3-0) on Saturday (TV: ESPN, 7 p.m.) in the first game at Neyland Stadium in nearly a month.

The Tide trounced Missouri over the weekend and come to Knoxville as an 18.5-point favorite. Alabama leads the nation in pass defense, pass efficiency, rush defense, scoring defense and total defense. The Tide's offense isn't bad, either.

The Vols rebounded from an awful first half to make things interesting in Starkville, but the loss to the Bulldogs marked Tennessee's 13th consecutive defeat against a ranked opponent in Dooley's three-year tenure.

"All you can try to do is go to the next one and get over the hump the next week. We didn't do it today," Dooley said. "That's how collegiate athletics is. You never know when it's going to happen. So you have to keep coaching and keep correcting and keep evaluating and play your way through it."

With games against Alabama and South Carolina looming, the trip to Mississippi State was supposed to be the best time to conquer that hump. Instead, in front of a decibel-blasting sellout crowd energized by the Bulldogs' best start in 13 years, Tennessee succumbed to the same errors that had plagued its first two losses.

"You don't really expect to have growing pains,"

said safety Byron Moore of the team's optimism back in August. "You expect to play perfect, but it's not a perfect world. It's part of football. We have to go back and get ready for next week."

While much of the attention will understandably be focused on the struggling defense, the offense has concerns of its own.

Bray insisted after the game that his knee was fine after he took a hit in the third quarter that left him hobbling, but he didn't put up characteristic numbers

"We've played good in the first half and fallen apart in the second half. Today, we fell apart in the first half and finished strong in the second," Bray said. "We just need to put two and two together."

Tennessee played the second half without its top two running backs, starter Rajion Neal (ankle) and backup Marlin Lane (thigh). Dooley is likely to address their status in greater detail today during his weekly news conference.

The Vols still racked up 213 rushing yards, although Devrin Young's fumble in the fourth quarter was especially costly.

"It's a tough loss, but we have to dust it off and move on," Dooley said. "That's all you can do. Correct the mistakes and move on."

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

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Comments » 226

RaineyVol writes:

I was there and the tackling was terrible! We have no leader to lead us in a crucial moment. Our offensive line is amazing. Our defense is a laughing stock. Patterson is in a league above everyone else and Miss State is a middle of the pack team. ( oh and p.s a State fan told me that he thinks they can run the table and go to the NC game. Wake up bro!)

eduardo writes:

I think the quotes on the rock were quite adequate!!!!!! Hey UT how bout a little free speech!!

OwensboroVol writes:

OK, I'm done! This game could have and should have been won. Dooley doesn't seem to be able to teach his players what it takes to win a close game. They always fall apart just when it looks like they can finally win. These kids have the talent to win. They had the effort to win. They just couldn't muster the effort it takes to do it when they had too. At this rate we will have another losing season and while I think Coach Dooley has done a good job, Winning is the ultimate way a coach is graded and he is failing with a capital F in that area.

jack4444 writes:

Does Justin Hunter even care?

Tennessee's won before with less talent and more intestinal fortitude. Play the guys who'll give their all, go down with them, not the prima donna types.

Oh- and speaking of giving his all, why in the world doesn't CP return punts? God bless AJ and Herman Lathers for their effort.

volbob writes:

Ben Franklin's definition of insanity goes something like "doing the same thing over and over expecting different results" - massive paraphrase, I know. The defensive scheme change is a disaster, and has been spilling over to the offense for weeks. The defensive "front line" looks like something the French thought up for WWI; the secondary looks like they are playing some kind of prevent deep zone; the linebackers can't blitz without giving up the middle for easy completions. Why, then, after 6 games of complete defensive failure are they continuing down the same path? Insanity. On offense, Hunter will never be a player who is willing to take a hit, so get over it; running game actually looked better; Bray needs to calm his feet down; he did show that he is willing to take off and run, and needs to do that more often...while learning how to slide. Special Teams is just that...special. Berry-Best Children's Academy in Hewitt, Texas, does a better job on the playground than the kickers at UT do on Saturday...consistently. All of that, in my opinion, boils down to inept coaching. Fulmer didn't learn by Clawsen's joke of an offensive, and Dooley doesn't seem to be learning by Sal's bumbling defensive attempt. Make some serious changes, Dooley, or be ready to pack. Any given Saturday and all of that...GBO

Bourbon-please writes:

Keep correcting mistakes...? If you correct them, then shouldn't you quit repeating them again & again??

Vols_fan_27 writes:

After the loss to GA I really thought that this would be the week to decide where the program was headed. I really thought we would get that first signature win in Starkville but it was never really a contest. I wanted to see Dooley succeed because if he didn't, that meant that Tennessee Football was failing. Well we are at the point that Tennessee football is failing. I am sorry, I don't consider it a success to only beat a mediocre ACC team in NC State, some FCS teams and Vandy and UK. Heck, those aren't even garuanteed anymore. Very disapointing to see the team struggle this much. I will support them no matter what but I am beyond ready for UT Football to be relevant again...GBO!

10SE writes:

We do not know how to win!

abnerPeabody writes:

We must correct the mistakes? When are you going to start? You have said the same thing for your 3 years now and you have not only failed to do so,but you have actually fallen farther behind.

This season is headed for the same results as your last two. One difference is you will beat Ky. but lose to .Dang Dooley,I just can't bring myself to type that other school's name.

secondcreek writes:

One wonders how things would have worked out if Lane Kiffin stuck around. His one year, 2009, showed a lot of promise.

DeltaCharlie3 writes:

Chins up Vols fans, Dooley makes it happen next year!

dvol writes:

Tennessee's Defense is a joke. They made M.S.'s quarterback and a running back that scored his first touchdown of the year look like Heisman hopefuls. There is something wrong with this team. No one is talking about it But, they don't look ready to play. I believe D.D. is a good man and would make a great A.D. but, he will never make Tennessee a winner on the Field. The Powers to be have a choice to make in a few weeks. Let us all hope they choose wisely.

BigVolinCarolina writes:

Aside from losing games, my frustrations could be summarized this way: UT continues to make the same mental mistakes (errors, penalties, missed tackles, special teams, blown coverage, misalignment) each week.

It has been that way all throughout the Dooley era and it's simply no fun to watch repeat performances on different Saturdays.

cyclonevol87 writes:

The difference in Florida and Tennessee they would have already fired Dooley like they did Zook,They saw they couldnt win with Zook lets hope Hart can see we can not win with Dooley.

arkyvol writes:

"...but we have to dust it off and move on," Dooley said. "That's all you can do. Correct the mistakes and move on."

sounds reasonable. there was a hire made by mike hamilton i'd sure as hell like to correct and move on.

florida-volfan writes:

People need to lay off Tyler Bray, he did not have his best game, but he still threw 2 TD's and got us back in the game. The offense was'nt even on the field that much in the first half, mainly because our defense is just killing us right now. Our running game is as good as its ever been with dooley....213 yards against the second best rushing defense in the SEC. Hopefully that helps us in the second half of the season, definitely going to need it. I dont know if Dooley is the answer, alot of people are upset including me. These next few games will certainly tell us

laraccoon writes:

The look on our coaches faces at various times last night really puzzled me , especially considering it was a bye week . i hope Dooley was under the influence of his pain medication when he gave his analogy of the game for this article .If you can take a football team on a field in your 3rd year as coach and they still dont know how to tackle i would say time to move in another direction coach wise .Hope Hart does it the right way instead of like his predecessor.

tnvol34 writes:

Dooley does not need to be fired, he can't get out there and tackle! We have talented guys, they just cannot execute! Especally when the game is on the line! We always make the big miscue when we have a chance to win! Will we ever learn to stop a team on third down? First downs, turn into touchdowns! When we don't make a play on ofense or defense it always cost us. Defensive guys, if you see that you are not going to get to the QB, get your hands up to block or alter his throw, please!

jobrando#216494 writes:

Dooley will work like heck fixing the defense and this Saturday's effort will be spot on . As another fan said "keep your chins up" . Just remember the team that makes the fewest mistakes wins.

agohn writes:

in response to DeltaCharlie3:

Chins up Vols fans, Dooley makes it happen next year!

How about...shut-up dbag Florida fan. Don't you have some jorts to make?

TNPilgrim writes:

The immediate problem with our defense is that they just don't have players with the talent necessary to compete for championships. The long term problem is that Dooley doesn't seem to be able to recruit top level players that would turn things around. Right now Rivals.com has eight teams in the SEC with 2013 recruiting classes ranked higher than TN. Four of those are in the East - one of which is the Commodores. They're not going to make up any ground at that rate.

CrankE writes:

Bray's bandwagon quote:

Sigh. Every team has bandwagon fans kid. Every team has a bandwagon. Every team is the horse that pulls that bandwagon. The successful programs have the "horse" in front of the cart and facing the right way too.

UT on the other hand seems to have moved the horse to the front of the cart, facing the wrong way and it's called "encouraging signs of progress." At least until another loss happens.

Seeing as how bandwagon fans come and go, why would you ever worry about winning them over, Tyler?

Once again, you're aiming at the wrong target.

CrankE writes:

Painting over the criticism on the rock. That's been the theme of the Dooley Era.

Pay no attention to the losses. Pay no attention to the inability to turn the horse in the right direction-it's in front of the cart now. Pay no attention to the 43 ppg average that our defense is surrendering to the SEC. Pay no attention to the loss to UK last year. Pay no attention to the exodus of assistant coaches who left to take the same job elsewhere for LESS money.

Just believe in the orange pants, the ceramic orange dog, the bamboo, proper showering technique, and "You're not going to have Tennessee to kick around anymore."

Painting over the criticism on the rock is perhaps The Perfect Image that epitomizes the Dooley era. Fulmer brought us "pounding the rock". Dooley brought us, "Repainting The Rock."

It's time.

Olcrow writes:

Our defense is a 3-4 not because of the alignment,but because it has as many holes as 3-4 slices of swiss cheese

TDTN writes:

What a frustrating situation. We have too much talent to be in this situation now. I am not sure the coaches have control.
Bray-You are NOT ready for Sundays. Heath Shuler thought he was and you are NO Heath Shuler. You have lot's of talent but you need another year.
Justin Hunter-Toughen up! You are making the easy catches but right now I have more confidence in Zach Rogers than you if we need a tough catch on 3rd down. Darick was tough, you are not. NFL DB's will eat you alive. You should catch the ball and punish the defender for trying to stop you. Instead you drop the ball for fear of taking a hit.
All running backs-watch film of Bama running backs.
Patterson-Learn to run a correct route. NFL teams need you to be a dependable receiver, not just run reverses.
Defensive Backs-On 3rd and 5 you cant play 10 yards off the receiver.
Everyone on D-HIT someone please! Punish the ball carrier every play. Switching to a 3-4 may challenge players on assignments but are they being taught to not hit hard?
I could go on for a long time, and these are problems I can see just from my seat.
Dont call me a fair weather fan, I have traveled over 28,000 miles to see every home game over 8 years and spent about $27,000 on tickets, gas, lodging, etc. WE FANS deserve better and the product on the field is unacceptable. I will be there Sat against Bama and I expect there will be over 50,000 fans in red in the stadium becasue most Vol fans will sell the team out again.
Did I mention this is very frustrating? We need change.

cyclonevol87 writes:

in response to tnvol34:

Dooley does not need to be fired, he can't get out there and tackle! We have talented guys, they just cannot execute! Especally when the game is on the line! We always make the big miscue when we have a chance to win! Will we ever learn to stop a team on third down? First downs, turn into touchdowns! When we don't make a play on ofense or defense it always cost us. Defensive guys, if you see that you are not going to get to the QB, get your hands up to block or alter his throw, please!

You cant fire the players,Just saying.

MR_VOL writes:

This team reminds me so much of the early Fulmer teams with Cutcliff and Chavis as coordinators.

I do not fault the offense as thirty [30] points should be enough to win about any game. I do however have unease with the defense.

This poor defense cannot get off the field especially in long yardage situations. It is just like with Chavis, the longer the down and distance---the higher the probability of the opposing team getting a first down [remember 3rd and Chavis]. I knew there would be issues and breakdowns with the new scheme but it is so aggravating . Also, like Chavis, the tackling needs much improvement. I believe with time Sal can make the turn but it is very hard to swallow now.

The only positives I see with this team, versus the early Fulmer teams, is this team does not make the dumb penalties, specifically late and out-of-bounds hits.

jobrando#216494 writes:

Time for the VANS.....

pcshowtime writes:

Why for the love of god did dooley change the defensive scheme to a 3-4. in a pivotal 3rd year. The first year since he was hired that he would have an offense that could put up some points.
Is he just that stupid?
Does he want to get fired just to get the 4 mil buyout?
Was the sal hire forced on him?
I do not know if we had the same defense we had last year we might be 6-0. But one thing is for sure Dooley is making the decision on whether to keep another year and easy one.

10seVol85_Part_Deux writes:

in response to volbob:

Ben Franklin's definition of insanity goes something like "doing the same thing over and over expecting different results" - massive paraphrase, I know. The defensive scheme change is a disaster, and has been spilling over to the offense for weeks. The defensive "front line" looks like something the French thought up for WWI; the secondary looks like they are playing some kind of prevent deep zone; the linebackers can't blitz without giving up the middle for easy completions. Why, then, after 6 games of complete defensive failure are they continuing down the same path? Insanity. On offense, Hunter will never be a player who is willing to take a hit, so get over it; running game actually looked better; Bray needs to calm his feet down; he did show that he is willing to take off and run, and needs to do that more often...while learning how to slide. Special Teams is just that...special. Berry-Best Children's Academy in Hewitt, Texas, does a better job on the playground than the kickers at UT do on Saturday...consistently. All of that, in my opinion, boils down to inept coaching. Fulmer didn't learn by Clawsen's joke of an offensive, and Dooley doesn't seem to be learning by Sal's bumbling defensive attempt. Make some serious changes, Dooley, or be ready to pack. Any given Saturday and all of that...GBO

Please, everybody, stop using that stupid "insanity" quote. Doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results is also the definition of practicing.

People always grab at that quote out of context. Specially people who are quiters. We don't need to give up and change everything we're trying to do. We need to keep working on it, keep practicing it, and get better at it.

Olcrow writes:

in response to MR_VOL:

This team reminds me so much of the early Fulmer teams with Cutcliff and Chavis as coordinators.

I do not fault the offense as thirty [30] points should be enough to win about any game. I do however have unease with the defense.

This poor defense cannot get off the field especially in long yardage situations. It is just like with Chavis, the longer the down and distance---the higher the probability of the opposing team getting a first down [remember 3rd and Chavis]. I knew there would be issues and breakdowns with the new scheme but it is so aggravating . Also, like Chavis, the tackling needs much improvement. I believe with time Sal can make the turn but it is very hard to swallow now.

The only positives I see with this team, versus the early Fulmer teams, is this team does not make the dumb penalties, specifically late and out-of-bounds hits.

At least Chavis' defenses were known to get to third down hence the term (3rd and Chavis).What should we call our defense now 1st and Sunseri?

Sovol writes:

Last year was the first time since 1910 that Tenn had back to back losing losing seasons. This looks to be the third in a row. They'll be lucky if they win 5 games and 4 is a very real possobility.

tnvol34 writes:

I think we should go back to 4-3 defense, maybe we can get more pressure on QBS. O-line is doing a great job! I SALUTE YOU! We should have won FL, GA and MISS ST, defense and mistakes from offense are letting us down!, not Coach Dooley! Dooley does'nt get on the field and play.

pcshowtime writes:

in response to cyclonevol87:

The difference in Florida and Tennessee they would have already fired Dooley like they did Zook,They saw they couldnt win with Zook lets hope Hart can see we can not win with Dooley.

Spot on if you coach for alabama and you lose to UT and auburn for 3 years in a row you get fired see Mike Shula.
If you coach for FL you do not go:
W-L Sec
2002 8–5 6–2
2003 8–5 6–2
2004 7–4 4–4
See Ron Zook you get fired..
maybe these two programs demand more than UT does. But for some reason it seems to work good for them.

JCJ1986 writes:

in response to tnvol34:

I think we should go back to 4-3 defense, maybe we can get more pressure on QBS. O-line is doing a great job! I SALUTE YOU! We should have won FL, GA and MISS ST, defense and mistakes from offense are letting us down!, not Coach Dooley! Dooley does'nt get on the field and play.

Yes, but the head coach can take the players out of the game who are making mistakes. Replace them with players who can get it done. And if there aren't talented enough players who can replace them then it's the head coach's fault for not recruting adequate talent.

Jim Chaney's play calling is a joke. 3rd and 4, and 3rd and 1 and we chuck it downfield. We have a struggling defense. Does Chaney help them out by running the ball and hogging the clock? No. He wants to run this quick strike offense like we have an NFL defense on the sideline that can stop anyone after resting during a 2 minute scoring drive.

rockypop writes:

Posters on this board either have forgotten, or more likely, never knew, that the SEC of today is not the SEC of Fulmer when the Vols won a NC. Back then, the only two teams that were consistently winning were UT and Florida. EVERY other team was in total disarray, with the exception of a team here or there, that would put together a decent season.

So, fast forward to today. Derek Dooley, who was acknowledged by most on this board to need 4-5 years to turn this mess around, is now considered a failure only 2 1/2 years into his tenure. This, in a conference that is now, across the board, the strongest conference in college football, with the best coaches and the best players.

In other words, the expectation now is that Dooley must return Tennessee to its 1998 glory after inheriting a Division II team (albeit without a full roster) in the most competitive conference seen in all of college football - ever.
And, doing it after having to replace almost half of his staff.

What are you people thinking? You need to talk to Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina, Auburn, Arkansas, and LSU fans, and get some perspective about this. Over the years, UT has had one of the most stable programs in the country, and now, its time has come in the ditch.

And predictably, UT fans are jumping ship, because apparently, losing football games is affecting their self worths.

makelemonade writes:

in response to rockypop:

Posters on this board either have forgotten, or more likely, never knew, that the SEC of today is not the SEC of Fulmer when the Vols won a NC. Back then, the only two teams that were consistently winning were UT and Florida. EVERY other team was in total disarray, with the exception of a team here or there, that would put together a decent season.

So, fast forward to today. Derek Dooley, who was acknowledged by most on this board to need 4-5 years to turn this mess around, is now considered a failure only 2 1/2 years into his tenure. This, in a conference that is now, across the board, the strongest conference in college football, with the best coaches and the best players.

In other words, the expectation now is that Dooley must return Tennessee to its 1998 glory after inheriting a Division II team (albeit without a full roster) in the most competitive conference seen in all of college football - ever.
And, doing it after having to replace almost half of his staff.

What are you people thinking? You need to talk to Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina, Auburn, Arkansas, and LSU fans, and get some perspective about this. Over the years, UT has had one of the most stable programs in the country, and now, its time has come in the ditch.

And predictably, UT fans are jumping ship, because apparently, losing football games is affecting their self worths.

"and now, its time has come in the ditch"

??? I'm sorry but your comment seems to imply that UT's struggles are a recent issue. I don't know if you realize it or not, but we are getting very near a decade of mediocrity. It's easy to say wait until next year and then year after year passes by and all of a sudden, Tennessee hasn't been relevant for a generation. Pretty soon there will be young football fans who don't even remember when the Vols were competitive. That's sad as I love the Vols as much as anyone. Whatever happens, we can't afford another bad hire but as Bama found out when they hired Saban, you have to spend money to make money. Here's hoping the "powers that be" are willing to do what it takes.

rcart4321#546448 writes:

in response to RaineyVol:

I was there and the tackling was terrible! We have no leader to lead us in a crucial moment. Our offensive line is amazing. Our defense is a laughing stock. Patterson is in a league above everyone else and Miss State is a middle of the pack team. ( oh and p.s a State fan told me that he thinks they can run the table and go to the NC game. Wake up bro!)

Well RaineyVol it's Oct. 14th and I do know that UT will be no where near the NC game!!!! As for MSU we will continue to make that our goal one game at a time!!!

Vols_fan_27 writes:

in response to rockypop:

Posters on this board either have forgotten, or more likely, never knew, that the SEC of today is not the SEC of Fulmer when the Vols won a NC. Back then, the only two teams that were consistently winning were UT and Florida. EVERY other team was in total disarray, with the exception of a team here or there, that would put together a decent season.

So, fast forward to today. Derek Dooley, who was acknowledged by most on this board to need 4-5 years to turn this mess around, is now considered a failure only 2 1/2 years into his tenure. This, in a conference that is now, across the board, the strongest conference in college football, with the best coaches and the best players.

In other words, the expectation now is that Dooley must return Tennessee to its 1998 glory after inheriting a Division II team (albeit without a full roster) in the most competitive conference seen in all of college football - ever.
And, doing it after having to replace almost half of his staff.

What are you people thinking? You need to talk to Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina, Auburn, Arkansas, and LSU fans, and get some perspective about this. Over the years, UT has had one of the most stable programs in the country, and now, its time has come in the ditch.

And predictably, UT fans are jumping ship, because apparently, losing football games is affecting their self worths.

I am not trying to sound disrespectful here, but just as you mentioned that this is not the SEC of the Fulmer years, neither is the Coaching world. Today, as a coach, if you go into a school, especially an SEC school, and in your third year are not producing any noticable results, the fact is you will not keep your job long. The coaching world has definitely gone to what have you done for me lately. I have to disagree that you see UT fans "jumpin ship". I see peopel that are just passionate about wanting to see their team be successful. And honestly, there has been zero change in three years. Now I was one that said Dooley needed time, but it just seems that the past 2 years, things progressively get worse as the season continues, and that is not progress. I know we play a tough schedule but at some point, there has to be light at the end of the tunnel. The biggest thing that bothers me is that in the post game press conferences, we are starting to hear a lot of the same excuses/explanations for the problems that we hear the last half of last season. I still have hope we can find a signature win this season, but that hope is quickly dwindling.

teewhy68#490336 writes:

in response to arkyvol:

"...but we have to dust it off and move on," Dooley said. "That's all you can do. Correct the mistakes and move on."

sounds reasonable. there was a hire made by mike hamilton i'd sure as hell like to correct and move on.

Couple of suggestions to help us move on:

Bob Diaco - ND Defensive Coord. I thought Kelly should have been our hire when they brought Kiffin in, we can't get him now, but I think Diaco would be a good option. The ND defense is for real and they have been getting better every year even with a spread offense on the other side

Charlie Strong - Another defensive minded coach with SEC pedigree. He restocked Louisville and they are having another good year

pcshowtime writes:

in response to rockypop:

Posters on this board either have forgotten, or more likely, never knew, that the SEC of today is not the SEC of Fulmer when the Vols won a NC. Back then, the only two teams that were consistently winning were UT and Florida. EVERY other team was in total disarray, with the exception of a team here or there, that would put together a decent season.

So, fast forward to today. Derek Dooley, who was acknowledged by most on this board to need 4-5 years to turn this mess around, is now considered a failure only 2 1/2 years into his tenure. This, in a conference that is now, across the board, the strongest conference in college football, with the best coaches and the best players.

In other words, the expectation now is that Dooley must return Tennessee to its 1998 glory after inheriting a Division II team (albeit without a full roster) in the most competitive conference seen in all of college football - ever.
And, doing it after having to replace almost half of his staff.

What are you people thinking? You need to talk to Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina, Auburn, Arkansas, and LSU fans, and get some perspective about this. Over the years, UT has had one of the most stable programs in the country, and now, its time has come in the ditch.

And predictably, UT fans are jumping ship, because apparently, losing football games is affecting their self worths.

"What are you people thinking? You need to talk to Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina, Auburn, Arkansas, and LSU fans, and get some perspective about this. Over the years, UT has had one of the most stable programs in the country, and now, its time has come in the ditch."

I watched mike shula inherit alabama program on probation with a 2 year bowl ban. There was also scholarships limited 21 spread out over 3 yrs.
He had less talent than dooley and posted a 26-23 overall record 13-19 in the sec.
In 2005 he went 10-2 overall they gave him a contract extension.
The next year 6-6
Yeah the alabama fan base spoke the fired him and gave him a 4 mil buyout and hired nick saban.
Florida fans spoke also the fired ron zook with a
23-14 overall record and 16-8 sec record and hired urban meyer.

VOL_MAROONED_IN_NC writes:

Bama faovered by only 18.5? Bet the house to cover, this will be a monumental beating. Hurts to say it but no denying it either. By the way, maybe Dooley should get his game plans from The Rock, couldn't be any worse than what this schmuck and his Keystone Cop Coordinators keep vomiting up every miserable week.

tnvol34 writes:

CUDOS to whomever recruited C Patterson to UT! Best JUCO player ever! at UT!,GREAT NFL potential! Our season would be a lot worse without him. Great impact player! And please tell me why are we going long on 3rd and one? The goal is to get a first down! Like I say, first downs lead to touchdowns! Just ask the other team!

volcop writes:

in response to tnvol34:

Dooley does not need to be fired, he can't get out there and tackle! We have talented guys, they just cannot execute! Especally when the game is on the line! We always make the big miscue when we have a chance to win! Will we ever learn to stop a team on third down? First downs, turn into touchdowns! When we don't make a play on ofense or defense it always cost us. Defensive guys, if you see that you are not going to get to the QB, get your hands up to block or alter his throw, please!

the coaches pick the players and are supposed to teach them, it's called "coaching"

GloryDays writes:

Most of the people on here are UT fans, but it is really frustrating to continually lose. It is upsetting when our talent level is up, but we still lose and play inconsistantly and look poorly coached. Dooley doesn't seem to learn or get better, leaving little hope for the future. Dooley doesn't know how to win. It's time to get someone who can win.

Pickwick-Vol writes:

in response to rockypop:

Posters on this board either have forgotten, or more likely, never knew, that the SEC of today is not the SEC of Fulmer when the Vols won a NC. Back then, the only two teams that were consistently winning were UT and Florida. EVERY other team was in total disarray, with the exception of a team here or there, that would put together a decent season.

So, fast forward to today. Derek Dooley, who was acknowledged by most on this board to need 4-5 years to turn this mess around, is now considered a failure only 2 1/2 years into his tenure. This, in a conference that is now, across the board, the strongest conference in college football, with the best coaches and the best players.

In other words, the expectation now is that Dooley must return Tennessee to its 1998 glory after inheriting a Division II team (albeit without a full roster) in the most competitive conference seen in all of college football - ever.
And, doing it after having to replace almost half of his staff.

What are you people thinking? You need to talk to Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina, Auburn, Arkansas, and LSU fans, and get some perspective about this. Over the years, UT has had one of the most stable programs in the country, and now, its time has come in the ditch.

And predictably, UT fans are jumping ship, because apparently, losing football games is affecting their self worths.

Could be the best post I've ever seen on this site. Go Vols!

golfman1975 writes:

We just need a big win to boost everyones state of mind. If you think the fans are frustrated...who is on the field playing their butts off! As for the defense...didnt coach S come from Bama? Didnt they win a NC? Seven new assistants this year? Do you think they should be able to walk on water?

stevefrommemphis writes:

Who has more bandwagon fans than anybody? ALABAMA. Most of them have never set foot in Tuscaloosa.

MikeNPS writes:

in response to secondcreek:

One wonders how things would have worked out if Lane Kiffin stuck around. His one year, 2009, showed a lot of promise.

That one year also showed the potential for major NCAA sanctions against the Vols. Get over Kiffin -- he went to accept what is his dream job and I really do not fault anyone for doing that.

MikeNPS writes:

in response to BigVolinCarolina:

Aside from losing games, my frustrations could be summarized this way: UT continues to make the same mental mistakes (errors, penalties, missed tackles, special teams, blown coverage, misalignment) each week.

It has been that way all throughout the Dooley era and it's simply no fun to watch repeat performances on different Saturdays.

From my perspective, the team is not developing. It is not getting better as the season progresses. Skills are not improving.

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