It was a big Saturday afternoon for Tennessee’s defense which recorded three touchdowns in one game for the first time in program history.
Senior defensive end Tyler Baron scored the first of three touchdowns. Corner Gabe-Jeudy Lally forced a fumble on a screen pass and Baron picked it up stumbling 24 yards into the checkerboards for a touchdown.
It was Baron’s first career touchdown. He almost had a touchdown two seasons ago when he returned a fumble for a. touchdown against Ole Miss before the officials retroactively ruled the Rebels’ quarterback Matt Corral was down by forward progress.
“I just want to shout out Gabe Jeudy-Lally. It was a great play by him,” Baron said postgame. “It was a little PTSD to be honest— I thought it might get called back but I’m just appreciative of the whole defense.”
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The real fun began when Baron got into the end zone to give Tennessee a 35-3 second quarter lead. Baron broke out the ‘Deion Shuffle’ — the same celebration Tennessee corner Kamal Hadden did earlier this season after his pick six against South Carolina.
GJL 🤝 TB
— Tennessee Football (@Vol_Football) November 4, 2023
Why the ‘Deion Shuffle’?
“The celebration was paying tribute to Kamal Hadden,” Baron said. “That’s one of our brothers that we lost to a season ending injury. I just really wanted to show him that we still love him and he my guy forever.”
Baron is having a career senior season and through nine weeks has a career-high five sacks to go along with 22 total tackles. Baron’s 79.8 PFF grade ranks fourth in the SEC amongst EDGE rushers that have played at least 100 snaps.
Like Baron, Kamal Hadden was having a career season before suffering a season-ending shoulder injury against Alabama two weeks ago. Hadden’s 85.8 PFF grade ranks 10th nationally and fourth in the SEC amongst cornerbacks that have played 100 snaps this season.