9. Another tough West draw
One of the most astonishing stats I’ve ever seen about any program is how tough the SEC West has been on Tennessee in the past few years.
Much of that has to do with UT’s natural crossover rival, Alabama, but outside the Crimson Tide, the Vols have caught some of the best, and the hottest, teams from the West. Since 2011, UT’s SEC West opponents have been an astonishing 53-3 coming into their game against Tennessee on the schedule.
There’s a chance 2015 could be more of the same. For now, it’s a pretty safe assumption that Alabama won’t enter the game with many, if any, losses, while Arkansas is one of the up-and-comers in the conference. With a relatively soft schedule to start the year, there’s a decent chance the Razorbacks will be 4-0 coming into Knoxville.