Whether you watched the game against North Texas from home on television, listened to it or were at the game – one of the primary conversations in what was a lackluster effort from the Vols overall centered on the deteriorating field conditions inside Neyland Stadium.
RIP Shields-Watkins field pic.twitter.com/lKShKWrWmS
— Rocky Top Insider (@rockytopinsider) November 14, 2015
The amount of slipping, divots formed and overall poor shape of Shields-Watkins Field was a big story after the South Carolina game and continued to be after both teams struggled to find footing on Saturday.
It was poor enough that the official Twitter account of North Texas football made a joke about it. Butch Jones also answered more questions about it following UT’s 24-0 win on the bad track.
“The thing that you have to stress is everything is about body position,” Jones said while discussing what he can do to help his team prepare for it. “You can’t let your feet get outside the position of your body. So it’s really being in a good football position which, we stress all the time. It’s really just being in a football position and not letting your feet get outside the body.”
There likely isn’t much UT can do between now and the season finale against Vanderbilt in two weeks. But questions will remain about the long-term future of the field. Tennessee will have some tough decisions in the offseason in this area, but Jones can’t worry a ton about it right now.
“I’ve got to get our team ready,” Jones said when asked if he’s frustrated about the condition of the field. “I know we’ll take every possible adjustment. We will do everything we can on the field, but I’ve got to worry about getting this team ready to go for the next two weeks and playing our best football and getting our health back.”