The only way this grade could be higher is if the Vols had accomplished what they did against South Carolina a week ago and managed to score a touchdown on special teams. They didn’t, but it was a stellar night for UT’s specialists even without that.
Brent Cimaglia continues to be one of the best kickers in the country this season, going a perfect 3-for-3 on his field goal attempts, including a career-best 53-yard make. Paxton Brooks was effective on his punts and kick-offs both, and UT’s coverage units were superb. Marquez Callaway had a good 10-yard return to give the Vols a little better field position on offense as well.
How can you not give Tennessee’s special teams a great great based on the performance of Brent Cimaglia alone? Cimaglia made a career-high 53-yard field goal that was the longest made field goal for the Vols since 1995. He was 3-for-3 on the night, connecting from 36, 48 and 53 yards out.
Paxton Brooks had a solid night as well, averaging 44.0 yards per punt. Brooks downed two punts inside the 20-yard line and had a long of 54 yards.