Many Vols Have Chance to Move Up Record Books

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    Jalen Hurd-1-2

    When Cam Sutton returned a punt 85 yards for a touchdown for the Vols in Saturday’s 53-28 victory over Vanderbilt, it propelled him into first place as Tennessee’s all-time leader in punt return yards in a single season. At 467 yards, Sutton now owns the single-season mark for punt returns for the Vols, and he can still add to that in whatever bowl game the Vols will play in.

    But Sutton isn’t the only Vol who has a chance to cement himself into Tennessee’s record books. There are several Vols who can move up the top rankings in several statistical categories before the end of this season or by the end of next season, and some could even end up atop some of those lists.

    Here are where some Vols currently rank in Tennessee’s record books and how close they are to the next highest ranking.

    Josh Dobbs

    Tennessee’s starting quarterback Josh Dobbs has a chance to move up several statistical categories before the year is up and by the end of his senior season next year. Dobbs already has the most rushing yards in a single season by a Vols’ quarterback with 623, but that’s not the only area where Dobbs’ name can be seen in Tennessee’s record book.

    As it stands now, Dobbs has 2,748 total yards on the season which is good for 10th all-time for a single-season mark by a Vols’ player. If Dobbs gains just 213 combined rushing and passing yards in Tennessee’s bowl game, he will end up 5th on the Vols’ single-season list, surpassing Peyton Manning’s 1995 season. 409 total yards would put him at 4th, ahead of Manning’s 1996 season.

    Dobbs has only started one full season, but through 23 career games, Dobbs has already ascended up the career stats list in several areas.

    Dobbs’ 5,307 total offensive yards has him currently ranked 7th all-time in Tennessee’s record books. With a senior campaign similar to his junior year, Dobbs can likely land as high as 3rd all-time, passing Erik Ainge’s career mark of 8,473 total yards.

    With 4,026 career passing yards, Dobbs currently sits right at No. 10 on the Vols’ career passing leaders. Dobbs needs just 161 yards to move up to 8th by the end of the year, but there’s a good chance he can end up as high as 5th with another 2,372 passing yards. For comparison, Dobbs currently has 2,125 through 12 games this season

    Dobbs currently has 13 wins as a starter for the Vols, placing him tied for 12th all-time. Depending on how successful Tennessee’s 2016 season is, Dobbs could end up anywhere between 4th and 7th by the end of his senior year.

    Jalen Hurd

    Though only a sophomore, Jalen Hurd has a realistic shot of leaving an indelible mark on Tennessee’s record books next season. Even this year, Hurd’s name is already peppered into the Vols’ records.

    So far this season, Jalen Hurd has carried the ball 253 times and has been the workhorse for the Vols’ running game. That number has him tied for 4th most in a single season with Travis Henry in 2000. Hurd needs just 20 more carries to surpass Jay Graham’s 1995 mark. Hurd also has 1,158 rushing yards this season which places him 12th on Tennessee’s single-season rushing list, a mere 4 yards away from passing Charlie Garner’s 1993 mark. With 104 yards, Hurd would end up 7th on the single-season list.

    Hurd has scored 11 rushing touchdowns this season, placing him squarely inside the top 10 of Tennessee’s single-season list. Just one more would tie him with a handful of other former Vols, and two rushing scores would put him at 6th with Montario Hardesty, Haskel Stanback, and Beattie Feathers.

    Through two seasons, Hurd has had nine 100-yard rushing games. That number has him currently tied with Tauren Poole and Arian Foster for 9th all-time, and Hurd would need only 7 more to surpass Travis Henry’s school record of 15 career 100-yard games.

    But the big indicator of a running back’s success is how many yards they accumulate over a career, and Jalen Hurd has a chance to actually challenge Tennessee’s all-time mark. Right now Hurd has 2,057 career rushing yards, putting him at No. 15 all-time for the Vols. But Hurd needs just 1,022 more rushing yards to surpass Travis Henry’s career mark of 3,078 yards. If Hurd posts a similar line his junior year that he has this season, he will crush that mark.

    Evan Berry

    Sophomore defensive back Evan Berry has been one of the most dynamic kick returners the Vols have ever had, and he can cement his legacy as arguably the best returner by the time his career is over.

    Right now, Berry’s 804 return yards on the season has him behind only David Oku’s mark of 863 return yards in 2009. Just another 60 return yards would give Berry the single-season mark. His 1,217 career return yards has him 5th all-time for the Vols, and Willie Gault’s record career total of 1,854 yards is certainly within reach.

    Berry has returned three kickoffs for scores this season, and that his him tied with Gault for the most in a single season. Berry is also just one more touchdown away from tying Gault’s record of 4 career return touchdowns, and two would give him the outright lead. Berry also is averaging 38.3 yards a return this season, which is by far the most average yards per return in a single season in Tennessee history. The record right now is Dale Carter’s 29.82 yards a return in 1990, meaning Berry easily has the single-season record.

    Others

    Some other Vols of note who are already in the record books and have a chance to move up them are Derek Barnett, Aaron Medley, and Trevor Daniel.

    Barnett’s career total of 19 sacks has him right outside Tennessee’s top sack leaders. With just one more, he will tie Steve White for 8th all-time, and just 9 more, his total so far this season, would tie him with Leonard Little for the 2nd-most in Vols’ history. If Barnett can manage 14 more sacks, he would surpass Reggie White to be Tennessee’s leader for most sacks in a career.

    Trevor Daniel, Tennessee’s punter this year, has been a weapon for the Vols all season and has had one of the best seasons of any Vols’ punter. His 45.6 yards per punt average this season is good for 2nd behind only Jimmy Colquitt’s 46.9 mark in 1982. This season has been the redshirt sophomore’s fist career action, but that kind of average would place him as Tennessee’s all-time leader in punt average if he can maintain that. Jimmy Colquitt is currently Tennessee’s all-time leader with a 43.9 career average.

    Sophomore kicker Aaron Medley received a lot of criticism early this season when he missed a handful of clutch field goals and missed three in one game against Alabama. But he recovered well down the stretch, hitting 11 of his 12 field goals in the last 5 games of the season. His 20 made field goals this season has him tied for 4th in a single season with his own mark from last year, and two more would send him past Daniel Lincoln’s 2007 mark. His 40 career field goals places him 7th all-time for the Vols, just 32 behind Fuad Reveiz’ career mark of 71.