Tennessee Vols vs. Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets: game thread

It’s finally here. Football Time in Tennessee.

The Vols take on the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets in the national spotlight to cap off the first weekend of major college football tonight at 8:00 in Atlanta’s new Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

ESPN has the broadcast, and Rece Davis, Kirk Herbstreit, and Maria Taylor are the analysts.

This is your Gameday on Rocky Top game thread. If you haven’t signed up for the Guessing Game yet, why not?

Go Vols!

  • Kickoff:ย Sept. 4, 8 p.m. ET
  • TV:ย ESPN
  • Live Audio (WNML in Knoxville)
  • Satellite Radio:ย Sirius and XM Channel 80
  • Live Stats


  1. 38-24 Vols

    Go Big Orange! Let’s the start the year 1-0!

  2. Cautiously optimistic for this one. GBO.

  3. So, one of the two top searches for folks finding the site is “gamedayonrockytop, idiot.” ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Just found it today! I spent most of yesterday — including the entirety of the game — at the old site, wondering where all my favorite writers had gone!

      I try to disengage a bit during the off-season, so I totally missed the sign-off post many months ago. But I was happy to find and read it this morning, and even happier to find the new site — whew! — which will become my new base of operations/shoulder to cry on for all things Vol-related. Better late than never!

  4. any word on the starting QB?

  5. Sleeves gets the start.

  6. Nine yards, about half of them after contact.

  7. Wait did I just see tacking the snap under center?

  8. Not the best start for Dormady.

  9. I love how Kelly runs. Dude’s going to be a star.

  10. Oh, QD. Settle settle.

  11. Forgot the guessing game! Darnit.

  12. FIST UP! Wait is that a thing anymore? 3DFW?

    Three and out!

  13. Techy bounce. Sheesh.

  14. Looks like Lynch is not playing. That’s the three best most productive guys for GT last year not playing.

  15. 3rd and long again. C’mon QD.

  16. I watched a little of the #2 vs #3 Tennessee/ Georgia Tech game from the 1950s in preparation for this. That little pitch looked just like ye olden football.

  17. Discipline. Defense. Me likey.

  18. Bituli! Two good stops so far.

  19. Really nice series for the second time.

  20. Bituli is playing great this quarter.

  21. C’mon Byrd. We need those.

  22. Vols showing great sideline to sideline speed and assignment discipline. Just need our passing offense to get uncorked assuming we’really not going to pick up 5ypc against GT.

  23. Offensive line disappointing so far.

  24. Holy Trevor Daniel! 70 YARD PUNT

  25. Press the kicking game, here is where the breaks are made.

  26. Punting: check. Defense: check. Returns: check. Offense: hmmmmm

  27. Let’s get another stop here Defense!

  28. I’m a firm believer in the basketball momentum killing timeout in football, and now would be a good time.

  29. Really poor play by Martin there.

  30. Hopefully this isn’t like that 1950s game and that’s the only touchdown.

  31. Well, if you can’t defeat the dive play against an option offense it’s going to be trouble. It’s up to our quarterback to determine if we’ll have a shot or not.

  32. Berry! Thought he was gone.

  33. Crud. The guys need to help Dormady.

  34. Help your QB. Catch the ball.

  35. Don’t want to be that guy, BUT, this is the gameplan that took a whole summer to develop? Throw the ball all over the field with a kid making his first start? Awesome power run first series, have we ran the ball since? Not pleased at all.

  36. Thank you Special Teams…Berry!

  37. Don’t play for the safety, keep contain. And we may have to bring up a safety against the middle as much as I hate leaving our corners on islands.

  38. Sigh. Send the tired defense back in.

    I can’t find the tweet now, but Will pointed out from the stands that the team needs to do better on first and down. Really unmanageable third downs.

  39. Jennings with a drop and poor effort coming up short on a 3rd down. Getting bad vibes here.

  40. C’mon defense. Sorry, you were just out there and the offense is out of rhythm.

  41. What is going on with Justin Martin?

  42. Offense, place thy ball in thy endzone, then go thank the defense. Lather. rinse. Repeat.

  43. For the record, if that is the most interesting college football fan we must all be unbearably annoying.

  44. Sheesh. Not a good decision to throw that there.

  45. A completed pass for a first down!

  46. We’re all learning together here.

  47. Taking a page from GT’s book with the inside-outside variance.

  48. First down, Ethan. Whew.

  49. John. Kelly. Touchdown. Vols.

  50. Can Chief of Staff be John Kelly’s nickname or is that too topical?

  51. Jennings to Locker room per Will on twitter. ๐Ÿ™

  52. Why do we have a giant garbage can on the sidelines held up by one of the coaches?

  53. This is a little maddening to watch

  54. This has been a terrible debut for Scott. You have to control the ball agaianst this offense or they will dominate you.

  55. I’ve learned my lesson from every game last year, but not feeling great about this matchup right now.

  56. Frustration:

    TIME OF POS. 08:30 21:19
    TOTAL NET YARDS 96 225
    Total Plays 28 43

  57. We’ve gained more yards on kickoff returns (100) than the entire offense did the entire first half.

  58. Jennings out for the rest of the game.

  59. Don’t panic. Just need a stop and have to establish the run. Looks like Dobbs mobility was more of an asset than his inaccuracy was a hindrance. Might not be a terrible idea to let JG run the zone read coming out of half.

  60. The more I look at it, the less I like the DL being so far off the line of scrimmage. It’s giving GT a 2-yard head start.

  61. This is almost worse than being blown out. It’s like being killed by a colubrid instead of a viper.

  62. Anyone who thinks this will be anything other than a 6-6 season is delusional

  63. No receiver that’s every caught a TD in college, no QB that’s ever thrown a TD in college. penalty on the kickoff. What could go wrong? Rally time, y’all!

  64. Just can’t seem to get those last couple of yards. Got to fight thru it!

  65. Loving the new site, boys! Not loving this game as much so far.

  66. Oh, great. A three and out and we punt on fourth-and-1.

  67. Punting on 4th and 1 because this will be the drive you hold them to 3 and out.

    Fire Butch NOW

  68. 3 and out. Punt.

    That’s a great help to the defense.

    Good thing we keep doing the same thing. It’s worked so well so far

  69. Defense needs to mix something up. They seem passive and need to just make something happen instead of reacting.

  70. Trying to remain positive. Trying to remain positive.

  71. Those 4 yards on 1st down are deadly.

  72. First time I watched McKenzie; he started a yard behind and got pushed another three.

  73. Not impressed with O or D. Special teams is the only aspect that’s looked worth a dern so far.

  74. That’s a bad look showing the QBs separated like that. It’s normal, but still.

  75. 6.1 yds/carry….that is an atrocious defense


  77. If the offense goes 3 and out again, the defense will quit and the real estate signs will start filling up Butch’s yard.

  78. Sorry but all positivity i had starting the year is about gone now. This is very disappointing.

  79. The defense needed that timeout worse than Tech did

  80. hey! a stop!

    now let’s see if the offense can pick it up.

    I kinda wish JG would get a shot though :/

  81. Maybe they’re figuring something out????

  82. Face mask would have been nice there

  83. Now we need some of that on defense.

  84. They can’t stop the run.

  85. wooooo!!!!

    let’s see if the D can feed off this momentum.

  86. It’s the sleeves!!!!!

  87. That actually looked like an offense.

  88. GA Tech football does at least keep games short for purposes of work tomorrow.

  89. They need stops. Shoop has to figure something out. He’s making a lot of money and so far isn’t earning it as far as I’m concerned.

  90. Get aggressive on 1st down. Blitz the inside backers to blow up the dive and let the ends play QB. They are asking the two tackles to play two gaps.

  91. You know, if a long ball gets their offense off the field faster…


  93. The worst part is I could have gone 18-2 in the GRT picks pool. FULMERIZED!

  94. CALLAWAY!!! Again!!! TD.

  95. On side kick seems almost warranted.

  96. woooo!!!!

    Callaway is not going to go away without a fight

  97. Anything to keep the defense off the field even for a little longer.

  98. Anyone else think we found the offense about 2 quarters too late?

  99. C’mon Defense!!! Get a stop!

  100. Was that a stop!? Was that a stop!? Was that a stop!?

  101. Get the points. Onward Offense!

  102. Too close for comfort there. Steady, QD, Steady.

  103. Argh. Hate to have to bank on stopping them again.

  104. Well, room for improvement.

  105. Marshall going back in?

  106. Oh, great. A DL down holding his knee.

  107. Bituli should have laid that guy out.

  108. Man, I feel like I understand Georgia fans so much better now. This much be such a frustrating team to play every year.

  109. Who agreed to play these guys anyways?

  110. They’re salting the game away right now. Turnover is the best we can hope for now.

  111. there’s still life!!!!! XD

  112. Dear me! Do not waste this opportunity!

  113. wooooooo!!!!! Callaway!!!!!!

  114. Holy @#($&(%&(#@&%(@

  115. Give the ball to the playmakers—JFK and Callaway!

  116. I don’t think I could possibly be any more proud of this football team. Talk about giving your all for Tennessee.

  117. I have no idea how to feel about that clock right now.

  118. Let’s take our chances in OT. Make them a passing team and pray for another turnover.

  119. Kelly has a hole in his pants in a ummm, sensitive area.

  120. Better to give up a bust than allow eleventy-billion 7 yard gains.

  121. Well, Tech seems pretty on track to win with a field goal anyway, but I liked the fight.

  122. defense needs to step up again

  123. I really hope that TO was to stop a bust rather than just because.

  124. I feel better about the team with this 4th quarter even if GT makes the FG

  125. the radio guys say there was a real bad clip…true?

  126. Timeout management: questionable.

  127. !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! BLOCKED IT!

  128. woooooooooohoooooooo!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    let’s steal this one in OT!

  129. I liked the composure on QD after the block. Focus on the task.

  130. 1. The team that makes the fewest mistakes will win.
    Our defense has had its problems but it’s GT that has turned the ball over.

    2. Play for and make the breaks and when one comes your way – SCORE.
    When we’ve needed it just to stay in the game we’ve gotten turnovers and turned them into touchdowns.

    3. If at first the game – or the breaks – go against you, don’t let up… put on more steam.
    We were behind 14 points and nearly 200 yards in the third quarter but we never stopped fighting and it’s this effort and mental fortitude that let us get back into the game and take it to overtime.

    4. Protect our kickers, our QB, our lead and our ball game.
    We haven’t had a lead, but our kickers have been protected and successful.

    5. Ball, oskie, cover, block, cut and slice, pursue and gang tackle… for this is the WINNING EDGE.
    We’ve taken the ball away when given the chance and even though we have given up yards we’ve limited long busts. Our weakest point tonight but we’ve pursued and played hard.

    6. Press the kicking game. Here is where the breaks are made.
    What can you say, our punting has been awesome and we’ve shut down their special teams with long returns and blocked fgs.

    7. Carry the fight to our opponent and keep it there for 60 minutes
    If we hadn’t done this we wouldn’t be here with this opportunity to steal a win after 2.5 quarters of domination.

  131. so, the radio guys think they should go for 2 if the score the TD…..what says the peanut gallery here?

  132. So much for the Over/Under

  133. We keep coming back. Eventually it has to break GT’s spirit. By all accounts we shouldn’t be here. They dominated for 3 quarters.

  134. Great decision from Dormady on the forced PI.

  135. Time for the defense to do their job and win this game!!!

  136. First lead of the season. Cant say I expected the O/U to break 75.

  137. One thing you can say for a Butch Jones team is that they never quit. Whatever else you say about him his teams play hard for him.

  138. Pls no touchdown. They go for 2?

  139. One series to immortality, boys. This game will always be remembered if we win.

  140. Here we go. Does he kick it?

  141. Get the stop. Win Here.

  142. We may need to sell out one way or another to stop this.


  144. Wow, just wow. What a game. These guys never gave up!

  145. woooooooooo!!!!!!

    can’t believe they pulled that out, but hell yes!

  146. Say what you want about CBJ but his teams play to the very end!!!

  147. Ahem . . .


  148. Ill take a coach that loves and believes in his players, doesn’t cheat and his team always gives their all any day of the week. Whatever his short comings his teams give their all for TN every game. I’m proud to have him as my teams coach.

  149. OH. And I did go 18-2 In the GRT pool. How about that?

  150. Was at the game, but it warms the heart to come back and see 325 comments in this thread. Thanks y’all.

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