Something You Don’t See Every Day

We all want to win. Even after a remarkable second half to the 2019 season and a six-game winning streak, we’re all tired of years without banners or bowls we’d never grow tired of talking about.

We want our players to do well. We wanted that for Dobbs and Barnett and Kamara and Jauan and Cordarrelle and everyone else who found bright spots in the last 10+ years, and all the ones who didn’t.

We’ll want to win next year, and we’ll want the players who make up the 2020 Vols to do well. But it’s been a long time since we’ll have wanted a Tennessee team to win because we wanted it this much for an individual.

There are great stories out there to be told. This could be especially true for Jarrett Guarantano going forward, his rags turning into greater riches than the fine folks at Taxslayer can afford. Every season tells a story.

But if Trey Smith is coming back, then (Fulmerized), we might as well win them all.

Trey and his inner circle – whoever he considers that to be – get to be the experts on his decision making, and I know it surprised many of us to hear that news today, delivered in an impeccable late-90’s Louisiana accent. There’s some line out there between fact and fable when we talk about him risking his life to play for us. But Trey and his circle always get to be the ones to decide where that line is. One fact he seems quite clear on:

Trey Smith would’ve been loved around here for a long time if he went pro, whether he became an NFL star or not. He entered new territory in that department today. And aside from our admiration for him playing at all and making this choice, now he’s got a chance to earn some rare accolades.

John Henderson and Will Overstreet both earned consecutive first-team All-SEC honors in 2000 and 2001. Since then, only one Vol – Eric Berry – has been named first-team All-SEC twice.

Charles McRae and Antone Davis were both first round draft picks in 1991. Since then, only one Vol offensive lineman – Ja’Wuan James – has been selected in the first round.

Trey Smith, number one in your hearts today and for a long time to come, can also be number one on a lot of other lists, and a lot of other “first time since”s.

And if one of the biggest questions for 2020 was, “Who leads?” Ding ding ding.

We always want to win. But today, by itself and especially as the culmination of everything after September, will take us to a set of expectations we haven’t enjoyed for a few years, thanks to a player we’ll want good things for more than any other in even longer.

Trey Smith is coming back. Might as well win.

Go Vols.

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