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Checking the Film: A Closer Look at UT’s Overtime Loss to OU


First Quarter

13:07: After a few nice throws to start the game, Mayfield throws a high fastball here and the receiver can’t gather it in. Todd Kelly Jr. does exactly what he’s taught, which is fly to the football, and he’s rewarded with an easy interception. Tennessee owns all of the momentum.

12:37: Well-designed zone-read with a pass option here. Dobbs wisely keeps after seeing the linebackers crash on Jalen Hurd and nearly escapes the tackle for an even bigger play.

The play-calling on Tennessee’s opening drive was great. DeBord mixed it up and kept the OU defense guessing. So much that Oklahoma takes an early timeout to make adjustments.

10:48: Hurd comes out of the game on 2nd and goal after two consecutive carries. They were wide runs, but I’m surprised that the staff thought that he was in need of a break after getting just two carries following a timeout.

Really a poor spot by the official after Ethan Wolf is stopped short of the goal line on 2nd down…Tennessee was robbed of about half a yard.

10:32: Tennessee is stopped short on 3rd and goal from the one. Butch Jones said that they ran Kamara because Jalen Hurd was winded…but the 3rd down run followed an extended review of Ethan Wolf’s catch. No doubt the staff would run Hurd here if given another chance. Tennessee then elects to kick the field goal on 4th and 4 inches.

8:49: Jalen Reeves-Maybin is an exceptional linebacker. He completely blows by the block from the tight end and explodes into the backfield to crush Sterling Shepard. Also, credit Curt Maggitt for disrupting the timing of the pass off the edge. Tennessee’s defense was well-prepared for OU’s offense to start the game.

When the Vols have to take a timeout because the crowd is too loud for John Jancek’s defense to communicate…then you know Neyland was amped up.

7:19: Really nice fly-sweep to Pig Howard goes for 11 yards…yet Tennessee didn’t run it with Howard the rest of the way.

5:07: Easy to see that Oklahoma was very rattled early in this game. The players were committing penalties, struggling to communicate, dropping easy passes…etc. Tennessee’s defense played smart football and took advantage of the Sooners’ communication issues and really put the offense in a great sport early.

3:34: After a nice 3rd down conversion from Dobbs to Josh Malone, Tennessee runs another zone read play that gashes the Sooner defense. Dobbs reads that the end is playing contain on him and wisely hands it off to Hurd who slices through the hole and picks up 12 yards on the run.

2:04: A great call to move the pocket here and a great block by Alvin Kamara allows Dobbs time to get square and throw a perfect pass to Malone for the score. Oklahoma’s defense had zero clue what was coming on Tennessee’s first two drives, and the result is a 10-0 lead.

1:56: The Neyland crowd has taken Oklahoma’s offense completely out of the game.


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