No. 5 Tennessee put it behind in a way that highlighted the disappointment of its first loss when the Volunteers beat Missouri 66-24 at Neyland Stadium. It made a big impact later on. The Tigers sometimes pushed Tennessee during the game, but ultimately had no answer to the Vols’ explosive offense.
Redshirt senior quarterback Hendon Hooker rekindled his Heisman Trophy hopes with more than 400 total offensive yards and four touchdowns. As Missouri tied at 28–24 for him early in the third quarter, Volunteers scored three consecutive touchdown drives of over 67 yards to regain control of the game. Ultimately, they scored his final 38 points of the game, and backup his quarterback Joe He didn’t slow down even when Milton came in late.
After 289 total yards in a 27-13 loss to Georgia last week, Tennessee gained 365 yards in the first half alone. Missouri quarterback Brady Cook sometimes provided a scrambling ability to the Volunteer defense, but Tennessee had seven three-and-outs in the game as a sold-out crowd provided support on the program’s senior day. came up with
With the win, Tennessee finished the home portion of the schedule undefeated for the first time since 2007, and the Volunteers closed out the regular season with games against South Carolina and Vanderbilt. With 9 wins and 1 loss, Tennessee equals his best season wins since the 2007 season, with at least his three games remaining.
Impact on college football playoffs
With Georgia set to win one of its next two games to clinch the SEC East, Tennessee qualified for the College Football Playoffs as the one-loss team that didn’t play in the conference championship game. It seems necessary to acquire This has only happened twice in the eight years since the CFP has existed. But Saturday got him off to a redemption start for Tennessee after a disappointing result against the Bulldogs saw the Vols slip from his No. 1 spot.
Volunteers can’t afford to make another mistake and probably need some style points to help with their case. , which may explain why Milton continued to broadcast it when he was in the game. But if the goal was to make a statement with a dominant victory, a pair of extra touchdowns in the final minutes helped achieve that goal.
The Heisman Trophy race is still wide open, but Hooker needed a big game to rejuvenate his hopes after Georgia’s defense thwarted Tennessee’s offense last week. Delivered in the air and on the ground to keep his name firmly in the race. He finished 25-of-35 passes for 355 yards with three touchdowns and also ran for 54 yards and a score.
Hooker has now thrown 24 touchdowns and two interceptions, and has five more scores on the ground. A move to Virginia Tech will allow him to pass the 3,000-yard mark next week against South Carolina to get him through the season.
running back depth
Tennessee’s aerial offense was shown by Bull McCoy and Jalyn Hyatt each receiving over 100 yards, but their rushing game was also decent against Missouri. Hooker, Jabari Small, Jalen Wright, and Dylan Sampson each had runs of 19+ yards. Sampson’s performance was particularly notable as the true freshman ran eight times for 98 yards and a score.
The workload turned out to be his biggest in a conference game this season, making the former 3-star prospect a compelling case for being a big part of the running back rotation going forward. Leading just 35–24 in the 12-0, Sampson hit runs of 42 and 15 yards on back-to-back plays to set up a 2-yard touchdown strike from Hooker to Princeton Fant.