Losing 41 to 14 to a team that came into the game with a record of 1 and 4 is disappointing. That is exactly what happened on Saturday in Athens.
Tennessee's inspired and turnover-free performance against LSU the week before had many Vol faithful hoping for a win against the Georgia Bulldogs. Reality check. Despite Georgia's problems they still have many more really good football players than does Tennessee. The fact of the matter is if Tennessee suffers through another turnover margin of minus three during any game for the remainder of the season the Vols will likely lose. We proved against LSU, we aren't good enough to win when we play perfectly. We certainly aren't good enough to win turning the ball over three times.
But don't panic. Any reasonable fan who looked at our schedule before the season started would have seen that this could happen. Knowing what we have on our roster 2 and 4 was not only a possibility, anything better should have been a surprise. We have done what we thought we would do. We still have two more games that we will almost certainly lose. Alabama and South Carolina should beat us handily.
So, what's the good news? Finally November comes. After the inevitable South Carolina loss we have to win out. We need to beat Memphis, Ole Miss, Vandy, and Kentucky to secure a bowl berth. What kind of bowl will 6 and 6 get us? I have no idea but its been bantered about for years in Nashville just how badly the city wants Tennessee for the Music City Bowl. The Vols would play a mid-tier ACC team (maybe NC State, Wake Forest, Boston College, or Clemson). Can you imagine after all that the players and coaches and fans have been through we could still end up 7 and 6 and feeling good about ourselves going into next year. And based on what we saw out of Tyler Bray on Saturday and what we've seen out of Rajion Neal and Justin Hunter and Eric Gordon (fumbles aside) and Janzen Jackson and Jacques Smith we have lots to look forward to.
We will be fine. It won't be this year. It may not be next year. But we will be fine.
For now we must lick our wounds. We must grit our teeth and get through October's frights. We knew it would be like this. November will be here soon and I sure hope a December 30th game at LP Field isn't too far from reality.