The Tennessee Vols completely dominated the Chattanooga Mocs on Saturday in Neyland Stadium.
After starting the season 0-2, a 45-0 win was just was the doctor ordered for a frustrated orange clad fan base.
But let’s not act like a 45-0 win against Chattanooga erases the 0-2 start. Those two losses, games Tennessee should’ve won, loom large for a team that entered the season with bowl game aspirations.
Sure, Tennessee’s win against the Mocs was encouraging for fans. The Vols, who looked like a much improved team, did everything they were supposed to do against Chattanooga — they dominated.
But again, it’s what they were supposed to do. It’s also what they were supposed to do in week one against Georgia State.
What to expect from Tennessee the rest of the season
I think we saw on Saturday that Tennessee is capable of playing well. They’re capable of winning some SEC games this year.
At the same time, however, they’re still the team that lost to Georgia State and blew the game against BYU.
The Vols could beat South Carolina later this season, or they could lose to UAB in November. That’s the reality of where the program is right now. Nothing about Saturday’s win changes that. There’s no way to know what we’ll see from Tennessee on a week-to-week basis.
Moving forward, it’s still going to be a massive uphill battle for the Vols to get to six wins this season. In fact, it might be an uphill battle to get to five wins and equal last year’s record.
I think we can go ahead and mark down the games against Florida, Georgia and Alabama as losses. That leaves Mississippi State, South Carolina, UAB, Kentucky, Missouri and Vanderbilt on the schedule.
Based on what we saw Saturday, and what we saw last season, I think each of those six games are winnable for the Vols.
But each of those six games could also be losses for Tennessee. A one win season is just as possible as a six win season.
If I’m being honest, and I always strive to be, I have no idea what to expect from UT the rest of the season. Nothing that happened on Saturday makes me feel better or worse about the Vols’ chances of reaching a bowl game this season.
By the end of the season, we’ll know a lot more about Jeremy Pruitt and who he is, and is going to be, as a head coach.
But for now, it’s anyone’s guess as to what we’ll see from Tennessee the rest of the season.
Featured image via Randy Sartin-USA TODAY Sports