5. Losing streak to the SEC West
Tennessee crushed Ole Miss 52-14 in 2010. Since then, the SEC West has dominated the Vols (and the East overall). The Vols are 0-12 since that point against the current dominant half of the conference. Having Alabama as a natural rival certainly hasn’t helped UT. But Tennessee has had some chances against its other West opponents. The Vols seem to regularly catch a hot team, or play poorly, like in the 24-20 loss to an Arkansas team that came into Neyland Stadium at 1-3 in 2015. Unless UT makes it to the SEC Championship Game this year, its next opportunities will be against Alabama and LSU next year. It doesn’t appear to be getting any easier.