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Checking the Film: A Closer Look at UT’s 29-21 loss to Mizzou

Aaron Medley-14th quarter:

14:24: Tennessee had a lot of success with this play for most of the night against Missouri’s defense. By sprinting Hurd towards the sideline at the snap and then throwing him the ball in space, Tennessee could limit the effectiveness of Markus Golden, Shane Ray and the rest of the Tigers’ defensive line. I’m actually a little surprised that they didn’t run it a few more times and force Missouri to adjust their defense to stop it.

12:38: This was probably the play of the game as far as deciding the outcome. Tennessee is in the midst of a very nice drive and looks poised to at least answer the field goal that Missouri added in the third quarter. It’s first down, and Dobbs has a really nice pocket to set his feet and fire a pass to Josh Malone on the slant. The ball hits Malone in his chest, but his eyes were already off of the ball and focused on the defender in the middle of the field. The ball bounces off Malone’s hand and into the waiting arms of Missouri’s safety.

10:56: Just a back-breaking play by Missouri against pretty good coverage by Justin Coleman. Jimmie Hunt is matched up one-on-one with Coleman and Tennessee elects to run a single safety over the top. They send four linemen after Mauk, but Missouri’s offensive line is able to maintain their protection, which allows Mauk to step into this throw. Mauk actually slightly underthrows the pass, but Hunt makes a nice adjustment and takes the ball out of the air just before Coleman is able to get his head around. Just like that, the Vols go from three points behind and driving, to ten points behind with little momentum.

9:39: This is a perfect throw by Dobbs, but also an outstanding play by Missouri’s defensive back to force the incompletion on third and eight.

9:21: In a very similar play to the Jimmie Hunt touchdown against Coleman, Missouri again exploits a man-coverage look from Tennessee for a big play. Mauk gets Bud Sasser lined up one-on-one against LaDarrell McNeil and Sasser is able to beat McNeil down the boundary for a big pickup.

9:06: Missed tackles by three Vol defenders turn what should have been a two-yard gain into an eight yard gain for Missouri on first down. This was the play immediately following their big play to Hunt down the sideline and it looked like Missouri caught Tennessee off balance on that play.

6:29: Just a great individual effort by Bud Sasser to make this play against Cam Sutton. It looked like he may have gotten away with a small shove on the play, but that’s the exact type of play you should expect from a veteran receiver like Bud Sasser. It was a nice throw by Mauk to give him a shot, and a great play by Sasser to make the catch and get one foot down in bounds.

4:25: This is a really nice job by Pig Howard to secure the catch and make sure he has enough to pick up the first down on a critical fourth down play for the Vols. Every series has to result in points at this stage of the game for Tennessee, and Pig Howard does his job in helping extend this drive.

3:36: This is Ryan Jenkins’ first career catch as a Vol and it was a really nice play by the youngster. He had to make an adjustment to a pass that was thrown slightly behind him, but he was able to do so and hauled it in for the first down.

1:57: This was a really nice play by Jason Croom when Tennessee desperately needed it. Croom fakes an inside move and gets the defender off balance just as Dobbs is releasing the ball. After that, all it took was an easy catch to put six on the board. It wasn’t a difficult catch for Croom because of the work he did in selling the inside route. It also wasn’t particularly good coverage by the defender to bite on the move, but credit Croom for getting it done.

1:52: (Two-Point Attempt): This play is all effort from Dobbs to get in the end zone. All of his receivers are covered, so he just tucks the ball and does it himself. It’s a shame that such a great play will be forgotten with the loss, because this was one of the best efforts you’ll ever see to reach the checkerboards.

Onside kick attempt(s): What a strange and unfortunate turn of events for Tennessee here. The Vols are initially flagged for being offsides – which looked like a questionable call – but then recover the kick after Missouri touched the ball as they tried to recover it.

Here’s a real-time look at the kick:

And a simultaneous still shot of the hands team as Medley’s foot first touches the ball:

Because of the penalty for offsides, Tennessee is forced to retry the attempt.

Tennessee recovers the kick..again…but Justin Coleman touches the ball just before it goes the required ten yards and Tennessee is called for illegal touching. Missouri takes over at Tennessee’s forty-yard line and is able to run out the clock.






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