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Insider Mailing: The How Loud Will the Florida Game Be Edition

Photo Credit: Mason Burgin/RTI
Photo Credit: Mason Burgin/RTI

We answer your question about the Vols or anything else in our weekly mailbag, Insider Mailing. If you have questions about anything in the mortgage process, go to

“To celebrate the 5th anniversary of his resignation, name one positive thing Mike Hamilton did as AD.” – Doug Brooks 


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Nathanael: I mean…honestly, I think the only answer I can point to is hiring Bruce Pearl. And even that blew up in his face at the end. Hamilton’s tenure was just so poorly executed.

Erik: Raise money.

“I like Serrano, but the record is what it is. Does he stand a chance or is this just Hart pushing it off on the next AD?” – Mike Jehle

Daniel: I’m not going to count him out because he’s such an accomplished coach over the course of his career, but it’s going be extremely tough for him to survive past this season, in my opinion.

If I were going to retain him, I would’ve given him a new long-term deal with a very manageable buyout after Year 2. That gives him more of a chance to go out and recruit and reshape the program without being handcuffed. The decision to add one more year does make me at least stop and wonder if Hart might be passing the buck to the next AD (which, in fairness, if Hart knows he’s not staying more than a year, that makes sense to do it that way).

Nathanael: I 100% think this is Hart just putting off the inevitable and pushing responsibility on the next AD. Because I do think Hart will be gone after this next fiscal year. It makes sense to do it and is probably more fair to the next AD, but it essentially means 2017 will be a lost year for the baseball program. Not that most UT fans even care, but still.

“Although Hurd gets all the ink (deservedly) can you see a way that Kamara has a greater upside for a pro team?” – @NeylandMafia 

Daniel: That’s tough for me to see, honestly. I think Jalen Hurd is a three-down back that can play in the NFL for a decade. I see Alvin Kamara as more of a change-of-pace/No. 2 guy in the NFL that may get a crack in the return game. Anything can certainly happen, but I have a hard time seeing Kamara having more NFL upside at this point.

Erik: No, very simply put nooooooooooo.

Nathanael: I think it would depend on the type of system and offense Kamara got into, but I think regardless that Hurd still has more NFL upside than Kamara. Both are great talents, and Kamara is a very valuable running back. But Hurd has the build and durability to be an every down back. And while Kamara is actually bigger than you’d think (he does have to stand next to Hurd all the time after all), he’s still not going to be a consistent three-down back every single game in the NFL. Kamara is more versatile, however.

Ben Miller Loans

“Will the Sept 24 TN/FL game be louder and better than the Oklahoma game in 2015?” – @ShakeNeyland 

Daniel: That was a crazy atmosphere, but I would be surprised if the Florida game doesn’t exceed that.

Erik: Hopefully it’s louder in the fourth quarter.

Nathanael: Absolutely. If it’s not, then something is wrong. Or the Gators have taken a quick lead like the 2014 Alabama game. Or there’s been another fourth quarter collapse.

“How important is the game with UF for recruiting battles? Not just the past 11 years of heartache and disappointment.” – Shawn Waite 

Daniel: It’s big, though I think the importance of individual games is a little overblown in terms of recruiting, but I do think results on the field overall this year will be incredibly important if the Vols are going to land another top-10 caliber class in 2017. The “come be part of the group that rebuilds Tennessee” phase of Butch Jones’ recruiting pitch is over. Jones needs to go out and sell success now, so proving he can win the big games – like Florida – will go a long way on the recruiting trail.

Erik: If you don’t win the Florida game, you have to win almost every other game you play to show progress.

Nathanael: Most of the time, I’d say the results of any one game, even the Georgia game when the Vols host it, aren’t all that important to recruiting. They can help some, but not a great deal in the grand scheme of things. But the Florida game this year will likely be a microcosm of the entire season. The Vols need to win this game, close that chapter of the book, and show recruits they can finally win big games. That’s what recruits are waiting on this year for Tennessee. To see if they can win when it matters most.

“Only the rapture could get Cam Sutton off the Corner spot, so who gets the other side?” – Isaac H.

Daniel: The other side at corner, I assume you’re asking? Justin Martin will almost certainly be the other outside CB for the Vols in 2016.

Nathanael: Barring injury, Justin Martin will be the No. 2 corner. Emmanuel Moseley will be the backup for either position most likely, and Malik Foreman will likely start at nickel.

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