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Rocky Top Talk Jan 22, 2015

Bajakian Reportedly Leaving Vols Staff

Due to circumstances, Mike Bajakian is no longer committed to the University of Tennessee. After two years as offensive coordinator at Tennessee and eight years as offensive coordinator under Butch Jones, Bruce Feldman is reporting that Mike Bajakian will be leaving the Volunteers' coaching staff to pursue other coaching opportunities. Early reports indicate that he will take a job as quarterbacks coach for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Bajakian had struggled in his first two seasons at Tennessee, producing an offense that ranked 95th in the country in scoring and 94th in yards per play in...
Rocky Top Talk Jan 21, 2015

Tennessee Football Recruiting: Blue Chip Ratio

SB Nation recruiting director Bud Elliott posted an article last February where he discussed the effects of talent on participating in or winning the national championship. He noted that every BCS champion had a ratio of blue chip players greater than 50%-- that is, that there were more four and five star players on the roster than three or less. With one stellar recruiting class in the books and another on the way, where does Tennessee fit in? Recruiting at a Championship Level There's no question that Butch Jones has improved the recruiting at Tennessee since he arrived. The 2013 class...
Rocky Top Talk Jan 20, 2015

Tennessee 66 South Carolina 62 - I Also Like To Live Dangerously

Another stunning lead, another almost collapse, another big win. Let's talk about the end first, and then we'll talk about why tonight was so great regardless. A Robert Hubbs three put the Vols up 62-47 with 4:21 to play.  Against Kansas State Tennessee led 57-45 with 3:45 to go.  Against Arkansas Tennessee led 63-50 with 4:00 to play. So this is becoming a little too familiar.  The Kansas State script was mostly about turnovers.  Arkansas made some crazy threes, but Tennessee kept them at bay at the free throw line.  Tonight, the free throw line betrayed Tennessee in the final...
Rocky Top Talk Jan 20, 2015

Tennessee Vols at South Carolina Gamecocks: game thread

The Volunteers look to notch another road victory tonight, this one against the Gamecocks. The Donnie Tyndall bandwagon is filling up fast, so ensure your seat now by tuning in to ESPNU tonight at 9:00 ET as the Vols travel to South Carolina to take on the Gamecocks. Need to cram for the game? Psst. There's a game preview here. Go Vols! Tip: 9:00 PM ETTV: ESPNURadio: Vol NetworkOnline: WATCHESPNLive Stats: Gametracker
Rocky Top Talk Jan 20, 2015

Tennessee at South Carolina Preview

The Vols look for their third SEC road win and the Gamecocks look to turn their season back in the right direction. Two weeks ago on our initial SEC Power Poll ballot for league play, I had South Carolina as the second best team in this league.  It's been an intriguing question all year - who's the second best team in the SEC? - and the Gamecocks seemed to me, after all the non-conference dust had settled, the best answer.  It couldn't be Florida by default, not with six losses.  Arkansas was flashier but old road demons were just one loss away.  And there were plenty of other...
Rocky Top Talk Jan 19, 2015

Lady Vols "at" Notre Dame, 7 PM Eastern

In which we take a more gradual approach to conquering the Lady Vols' hodophobia. TV / Internet : ESPN2 / If you can watch this link, you're already watching ESPN2 anyhow, so what's the point? Radio:  He says "good grief" because his real thoughts aren't appropriate for a Catholic school. "Stats":  Sure, let's call this thing a "Gametracker". But perhaps theirs is better. (Hint: it isn't.) ADMITTING THERE'S A PROBLEM OK Ladies, at this point there's no sense in being delicate about this: you've got a problem.  Now don't panic: in a minute, we're going to go to great effort to help...
Rocky Top Talk Jan 17, 2015

Vols hold on, beat Missouri 59-51 with defense and free throws

Tennessee withstood another rally by an opponent and closed out the game against Missouri with a burst of defensive intensity and solid free throw shooting to win 59-51. The Tennessee Volunteers notched a good road win this afternoon against the Missouri Tigers, winning 59-51. Armani Moore led the way with a double-double, putting up 15 points and pulling down 11 rebounds. Kevin Punter and Derek Reese were also in double figures in points. Both teams looked pathetic on offense and formidable on defense in the first half and went to the locker room with the Vols up 26-24. After the break,...
Rocky Top Talk Jan 17, 2015

Tennessee Vols at Missouri Tigers: game thread

The Volunteers take it on the road against the Missouri Tigers this afternoon. Donnie Tyndall's guys travel to Columbia to take on the Missouri Tigers this afternoon at 6:00 ET on the SEC Network. As always, Will has your game preview here. See you in the comments below around tip time. Go Vols! Tip: 6:00 PM ET TV: SEC Network Radio: Vol Network Online: WATCHESPN
Rocky Top Talk Jan 16, 2015

Tennessee at Missouri Preview: Brackets and Tigers and Schedules, Oh My.

Tennessee returns to the road following a big win over Arkansas, and all the hype that comes with it... A Word on the NCAA Tournament So, the Vols won a game, and then Jerry Palm put them in a bracket, and now Big Orange hearts are all pitter-patter. Look, this is more simple than you think it is.  This happened last year in reverse, when the Vols lost to Texas A&M the second time and almost everyone immediately wrote off the season.  But the RPI math still made sense if the Vols won their last four games.  Which they did.  And though it did come by way of Dayton, the Vols got in. The...
Rocky Top Talk Jan 15, 2015

Lady' Vols Road Act Against Auburn

Now at 8 PM EST, come watch the Lady Vols play an overmatched opponent, mail in the first half, then eventually win in the last 10 minutes. TV: Fox Sports South or not Fox Sports South Radio: I'm turning into Mickey with this team Future: the future is terrible I want the past If this reads like a mailed-in preview, consider it a statement on the Lady Vols' effort on the road; I'll do more when they do more. Defense and low word count posts don't slump, but making this preview over 600 words is taking so many midrange verbal jumpers. The bullet points have been the same for weeks. Sometimes...
Rocky Top Talk Jan 15, 2015

Vols Add Elite 2016 TE Devante Brooks

The coaching staff continues to reel in elite talent with the addition of Washington DC's Devante Brooks The recruiting momentum for the Vols continues to surge as they reach into the Washington DC area for 2016 Rivals100 tight end Devante Brooks.  Brooks is listed at 6'5" & 220lbs and is currently a four-star tight end recruit by 247Sports as well as being the nation's 13th best defensive end. Brooks had offers from several top programs including Kentucky, Maryland, Nebraska, North Carolina and West Virginia, as well as receiving significant interest from Ohio State and Penn State....
Rocky Top Talk Jan 13, 2015

Tennessee 74 Arkansas 69 - The Bounce Back

Hot shooting from Tennessee's best players, including Robert Hubbs, was just enough to hold off a furious Arkansas rally and secure a big Tennessee victory. Against Alabama on Saturday, Tennessee was historically bad on offense.  The Vols scored 38 points, mostly because they didn't score for more than 13 minutes in the second half, turning a competitive game into an Alabama blowout.  Tennessee had a bad taste in its mouth, which threatened to undo some of the work Donnie Tyndall and this young squad had done in the non-conference, earning the investment of the fanbase in a year many had...
Rocky Top Talk Jan 13, 2015

Tennessee Vols vs. Arkansas Razorbacks: game thread

Tennessee hosts Arkansas and attempts to excommunicate whatever ghosts plagued the place the last time they stepped on the court. I trust you have recovered from the end of another college football season and are now in full on basketball mode. Or baseball mode. Or recruiting, or spring practice. Whatever. There's stuff going on. And tonight men's hoops attempts to forget about whatever that last game was by taking out a bit of frustration on the Arkansas Razorbacks. If your first thought is, "Hey, Arkansas may not be the best team to play to get your bearings back," you'd be right. Will's...
Rocky Top Talk Jan 13, 2015

2015 Hype is Here for Vols Football

It's good to have expectations. Hello, expectations. It's been a while. Earlier today, ESPN's Mark Schlabach released a completely meaningless top 25 ranking for 2015. It's eight months before the season starts, weeks before signing day, and days before even the deadline to declare for the NFL draft. Our picture of 2015 is limited, at best. But people love rankings, and so sportswriters release rankings. And these rankings were different than any rankings in quite a long time: they included Tennessee. The Vols have not been on anybody's top 25 radar in the preseason since probably 2008....
Rocky Top Talk Jan 13, 2015

A Look Ahead at Tennessee Baseball

The Vols look to improve upon last season, where they had their best record since Rod Delmonico's final squad in 2007. Dave Serrano’s fourth season on Rocky Top begins in a month, and things are looking up for the program. After reaching the SEC Tournament last season for the first time since 2007, Tennessee has their sights set on the NCAA Tournament and Omaha in 2015. Tennessee began last season with the best start in program history, winning twelve straight.  They ended up finishing with an overall 31-23 record and posted a 12-18 record in conference play. That earned them the #11...
Rocky Top Talk Jan 13, 2015

Tennessee vs Arkansas Preview

The Vols look to bounce back against one of the SEC's best teams. 13-2 (2-0)RPI: 13KenPom: 25 January 13, 2015Tipoff: 7:00 p.m. ET | Thompson-Boling Arena - Knoxville, TNTelevision: ESPNU Live Video: Watch ESPNLive Audio: Vol Network 9-5 (1-1)RPI: 69KenPom: 105 The good news is, it's not Alabama's defense.  The bad news is, it's one of the hottest teams in the country. Arkansas has won seven in a row to move to 13-2, and they conquered any road demons that were left by winning 79-75 in Athens to open SEC play.  That vacancy behind Kentucky for the second best team in the...
Rocky Top Talk Jan 12, 2015

Oregon-Ohio State, college football championship: Livestream, game time, TV schedule, odds

Tune in tonight and watch this one with dreams of orange-flavored championship games just over the horizon. In years you can count on one hand, this could be us. Really. Tonight, though, we must settle for watching others take their turns in the spotlight. Who are we rooting for? I'm guessing we Vols fans are mostly pulling for Oregon to do what it does. What it did to Florida State and what it's recently done to us. Because when you're not on the receiving end, running madly at the slowly disappearing heels of the victors, it's really pretty fun to watch. And what real Vols fan can pull...
Rocky Top Talk Jan 12, 2015

Peyton Manning & The Sunset

New questions await Peyton Manning, but the answers are still the same in Knoxville. This is the time of year when we write about Peyton Manning.  It's been that way for almost two decades now.  And for the last few years, we've written with uncertainty.  Lots of words you already know about legacy and myth, plenty of passionate defense for old arguments we just can't stop having.  He's our quarterback.  He always will be. A few years ago those words came out in fear.  Fear that Manning had slipped away, the chance to watch him do something great gone, stolen by injury.  And then,...
Rocky Top Talk Jan 11, 2015

Lady Vols @ Arkansas, 3 PM Eastern

APPALACHIA VS OZARKS - LOSER PAYS THE REVENUER Video: ESPNU / Whatever this link might be. Radio: Time to... say good grief... (as sung by Mickey "Bocelli" Dearstone) Numero: The old Gametracker would tell us who the refs were. So last we left the Lady Vols, they were finishing up an 81-58 trouncing of a defensively very good A&M squad.  It's the kind of win that might tempt some people to start making predictions about the NCAA tournament but, well, we've been down that road before.  So, moving on from such folly, we now look at the next game: Arkansas. It's still kind of odd to not have...
Rocky Top Talk Jan 10, 2015

Alabama 56 Tennessee 38 - The Longest 18-0 Run Of Your Life

It was very cold in Thompson-Boling today. We knew Alabama made a living getting to the free throw line.  But the Vols were not their normal foul-happy selves, drawing just 15 whistles all afternoon and putting Bama at the stripe just 12 times.  We knew Alabama was not a very good three-point shooting team that loved to shoot them anyway.  And the Vols played their zone and gave Bama the open looks it couldn't turn down.  The Tide shot 6 of 22 from the arc, just 27.3%.  Both of these things played right into Tennessee's hands; if you'd told me coming in Bama was going to shoot 12 free...

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