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Tennessee Football Moves Into Top 10 In AP Poll After Defeating Virginia

Photo via Tennessee Athletics

Tennessee football moved up three spots to No. 9 in this week’s AP Top 25 after its season opening victory over Virginia.

In the USA Today Coaches Poll, Tennessee jumped up one spot from No. 10 to No. 9 after its week one victory.

The Vols jumped Clemson, LSU and Texas in the week two AP poll.

Tennessee is one of six SEC teams in this week’s rankings, coming in behind No. 1 Georgia and No. 3 Alabama and ahead of No. 14 LSU, No. 20 Ole Miss and No. 23 Texas A&M.

Tennessee opened Josh Heupel’s third season with a 49-13 victory over Virginia at Nissan Stadium in Nashville. The Vols’ defense dominated the Cavaliers holding them to 201 total yards while sacking quarterback Tony Muskett four times in the victory.

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Heupel and offensive coordinator Joey Halzle’s offense didn’t have the explosiveness that it had for the vast majority of last season. Tennessee had just two plays over 20 yards in the win including just one play over 25 yards. But as Virginia played soft defense, Tennessee took what the Cavs gave them in the passing game.

But it was Tennessee’s rushing offense that carried the day. The Vols totaled 287 rushing yards averaging over five yards per carry. Three different Tennessee running backs totaled 50-plus yards in the win.

After a blowout season opening win, the challenge decreases for Tennessee in week two of the season. The Vols host Austin Peay to Neyland Stadium for the 2023 home opener before traveling to Florida for its SEC opener.

Kickoff from Neyland Stadium is at 5 p.m. ET Saturday. The SEC Network+ is streaming the game.

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