Vols Listed As One of 15 Teams Capable of Winning National Title

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    Photo Credit: Mason Burgin/RTI

    Some members of the national media have been projecting a disappointing and potentially downright disastrous season for the Vols in 2017. From claiming Butch Jones has the hottest seat in college football to predicting Tennessee to finish fifth in the SEC East, some of the national media haven’t been to kind to the Vols this offseason.

    One national media outlet, however, has a more positive outlook for the Vols heading into the 2017 season.

    New Arena, a site that covers every major U.S. sport, released a list ranking the 15 college football teams capable of winning the national championship for the 2017 season. And starting off the list at No. 15 is Tennessee.

    Despite having the Vols as one of the top 15 programs capable of winning the national title this season, New Arena’s description of the Vols isn’t exactly glowing despite praising the talent on the roster.

    “This could be a make-or-break year for Butch Jones,” the article states. “The Vols have yet to win 10 games during the Jones era — even though UT routinely ranks amongst the best in the nation annually when it comes to recruiting.”

    The article would go on to say that “the overall amount of talent on this squad is perhaps the best of any school in the conference not named Alabama,” but then correctly points out the Vols haven’t won 10 games in a season since 2007.

    “The quarterback position is an on-going battle between Quinten Dormady and Jarrett Guarantano (with the former potentially holding a slight edge),” the article claims. “Should Tennessee not win the SEC East this season, it could signal the end of the Jones tenure.”

    New Arena’s list has four other SEC schools ahead of Tennessee. Georgia (13), Auburn (8), LSU (7) and Alabama (1) all rank ahead of the Vols.

    Nathanael Rutherford
    Nathanael Rutherford is the managing editor and social media manager for Rocky Top Insider. Nathanael graduated from the University of Tennessee and cultivated a passion for the Vols while growing up in Knoxville a mere 10 minutes from Neyland Stadium. He's been a part of the RTI team since November of 2015 and has been the editor of RTI since June of 2017. If he's not talking or writing about Tennessee athletics, he's probably talking about Star Wars.