Butch Jones Era begins with 45-0 victory against Austin Peay

Tennessee's head coach Butch Jones walks through players during warm-ups before an NCAA college football game against Austin Peay on Saturday, Aug. 31, 2013 in Knoxville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Wade Payne)

Tennessee's head coach Butch Jones walks through players during warm-ups before an NCAA college football game against Austin Peay on Saturday, Aug. 31, 2013 in Knoxville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Wade Payne)

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Tennessee head coach Butch Jones addresses players during the first half against Austin Peay at Neyland Stadium, Saturday, August 31, 2013 in Knoxville, Tenn. (AMY SMOTHERMAN BURGESS/NEWS SENTINEL)

Photo by Amy Smotherman Burgess // Buy this photo

Tennessee head coach Butch Jones addresses players during the first half against Austin Peay at Neyland Stadium, Saturday, August 31, 2013 in Knoxville, Tenn. (AMY SMOTHERMAN BURGESS/NEWS SENTINEL)

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Austin Peay began football 77 years ago. It’s a wonder the bullies in the SEC waited this long to pick on the Governors.

Tennessee launched the Butch Jones Era to a rollicking start Saturday night, flattening Austin Peay 45-0 before a Neyland Stadium crowd of 97,169.

If the Vols (1-0) are diminished or in rebuilding mode, you couldn’t tell it in this mismatch against a lower-rung Football Championship Division foe getting its first taste of SEC muscle.

The first half was close to perfect. UT scored touchdowns on all six possessions, kept the Governors off the scoreboard and did not commit either a penalty nor a turnover.

The rout was quick in developing.

After forcing an Austin Peay punt, Rajion Neal raced 47 yards for a touchdown on UT’s fourth offensive snap.

Two plays later, Daniel Hood’s interception set up a short field. Marlin Lane found an open lane for a 15-yard TD run and it was 14-0 with 10:50 still left in the first quarter.

Devrin Young’s first TD reception made it 21-0. Worley found Pig Howard from 11 yards for a 28-0 lead as the second quarter began.

Lane’s 4-yard bolt pushed it to 35-0. When the subsequent drive bogged down, the Governors pitched in with two major penalties. Worley showed his gratitude, flipping a 3-yard scoring pass to tight end Brendan Downs, after which The Pride of the Southland Band marched to the tune of a 42-0 margin.

And the show was over.

The second half was a better match as Tennessee played almost exclusively reserves, many of whom were seeing their first career action.

Michael Palardy’s 37-yard field goal was the only score of the third quarter.

Nathan Peterman had only modest success in his UT quarterback debut, operating behind an inexperienced line.

Freshman Malik Foreman squelched Austin Peay’s best threat with an interception at the Vols’ 6 on the first play of the fourth quarter.

Tennessee is back on Saturday to play Western Kentucky.

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Comments » 8

fannotsheep writes:

Had to work, only heard bits and pieces. Sounds like the game was decided in the first quarter, as you'd expect in a mismatch like this. Glad the coaches showed class and did not Spurrier a hapless opponent.

We should learn a lot more next week.

wigmeister writes:

A positive beginning!

writer#358485 writes:

Tennessee looked like a very well-coached team. Even in reserves in the second half didn't embarrass themselves. Loved the no-huddle!

RoadTrip writes:

This was over in the first 5 minutes. UT scored every time they got the ball it seemed in the first half and really played conservative. Worley had total control and showed he had enough quickness to get the 5 yards they will need from time to time. His release is quicker and has total control of the offense. Peterman had to play with the 2's and 3's so there is not much you can tell from that. The receivers did a good job of getting their hands on the ball. North, Pig, DY, Downs looked really good. Harris had one heckuva catch. The timing was off some on the routes, but that will get better with more game reps. The first team D was really good. The concern relates to depth on D, especially at LB and the secondary.

Steps up another notch next week. That game will tell us more.

RoadTrip writes:

in response to writer#358485:

Tennessee looked like a very well-coached team. Even in reserves in the second half didn't embarrass themselves. Loved the no-huddle!

I agree. The focus, enthusiasm, disciplined play is encouraging. They actually looked like they wanted to play well - which has not been the case in years.

writer#358485 writes:

in response to RoadTrip:

I agree. The focus, enthusiasm, disciplined play is encouraging. They actually looked like they wanted to play well - which has not been the case in years.

I agree with you, they looked like they belonged out there and wanted to be there. I think we may surprise some people this year. A well-coached team like that won't allow itself to be embarrassed, even if it is out-manned. I'm not sure it will be as out-manned as the so-called "experts" claim, at least against most of the schedule. Poor Austin Peay, I actually attended there two years back in the 1960s. At least they got a good payday out of it. I enjoyed my time there even though it was a long time ago. Even then, however, my blood ran orange though I did attend a few Govs' games

GerryOP writes:

A nice day, a nice crowd, and a nice game. I think we have some ballers on this team! Anxious to see what the press has to say.

johnlg00 writes:

I made more extensive comments on the Adams column, so there is not much to add to what has already been said. The Vols did pretty much what I hoped for in their first game. The spirit and precision the starters showed on both sides of the ball and in the kicking game for the most part was quite encouraging. It is hard to go a whole practice with no penalties, so it speaks volumes for the quality of game preparation. Still, I'm sure the coaches can find plenty to correct in practice this week. I surely hope all of the Vols realize they haven't really proven anything yet, but for now all indications are positive.

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