As Christmas draws to a close and you are plugging in that brand new coffee maker, playing on the iPad that Santa brought you, or watching your children drive around your house in their new battery operated car, I thought this would be a great time to take a look at what every Volunteer fan truly wants. The following is the top 10 things that Volunteer fans wished they had found under their tree this morning.
10. A Notre Dame Win Over Alabama on January 7th
True it’s Notre Dame and yes the SEC is going for its seventh consecutive National Title, but really, do you want to sit through another year of having to hear Alabama fans boast about how great they are and how they have 32 National Titles and how Nick Saban is the second coming of Paul Bryant. If Saban is the second coming of Bryant, we are stuck in the tribulation waiting on Butch Jones to rapture his fan base. Honestly, does Alabama have to win to reassure everyone that the SEC is great? I think a brief look at the NFL, the top 10, this up coming draft, and so on will do more than that. Also, Notre Dame is not a part of any conference so really this is the best case scenario for an SEC loss in the title game. No other conference could claim superiority. If it takes winning seven consecutive titles to claim you are the best, the bar is already too high. Six out of seven isn’t bad, and no other conference comes close to claiming that. If you are in the “gotta cheer for the SEC” crowd, realize you are simply doing that because the last 5 years on Rocky Top have sucked. If Tennessee was playing Louisville in the Sugar Bowl after winning a National Title in the last five years would you still be cheering for Alabama. Absolutely not. Tennessee fans are for the Vols, and whoever is playing Alabama. Period. Even on January 7th against Notre Dame. Go Irish!
9. Florida Spanking Louisville in the Sugar Bowl
I know this one initially goes against everything I preached in the previous paragraph, but this one runs deeper. Anytime a pizza delivery company comes in and swoops up a coach that you were going after, you are allowed to cheer for any team to embarrass them. Florida gains nothing from this game except a meaningless piece of hardware. Strong on the other hand stands to be blamed for distracting his team during bowl preparations and being mocked for not taking the Tennessee job while Will Muschamp’s Gators march up and down the field on that sorry excuse for a football team that is the Louisville Cardinals. Normally I would say that I am pulling against Florida here, but due to the circumstances of the mess that was our coaching search, I hope the Gators stomp a deep dished style mud hole in Strong’s Cardinals. That’s an innuendo.
8. Jeronne Maymon Returning to the Floor
This one really needs no explanation. With Maymon on the floor Tennessee beats Virginia and Georgetown and is ranked in the top 25 right now. Maymon totally changes the dynamic of this team and could be the difference in Tennessee making the tournament or not. Unfortunately it looks like Maymon will not return and will take a medical redshirt for the season. However, how great would it be to see number 34 back on the floor for the Big Orange? Really great.
7. Lane Kiffin Getting Scorched in the Sun Bowl
How awesome would this be? Not only does the preseason number one end up in the Sun Bowl, but that preseason number one is coached by Lane Kiffin, and they get burned by a .500 team from the ACC, a league known for their amazing flag football. USC fans don’t even like Lane Kiffin at this point. I’m not a big believer in karma, but Kiffin’s situation is beginning to make me question my thoughts on it. Imagine it now, Tech racks up 643 rushing yards and doesn’t throw a pass in a 47-3 win. I’ll spot Kiffin three, just because that says, “Hey, you were close, but couldn’t finish.” I bet he gets that from Layla a lot. Just a big slap in the face. Yes I know the puns here were corny, but I know you giggled just a little bit.
6. Tennessee Signs a Player With Ties to a Super Model
Seriously, how awesome was it when Emmanuel Negadu was playing for Tennessee, and during the LSU game at Thompson Boling Arena you could look behind the Tennessee bench and there sat Marisa Miller? That needs to happen again. I don’t know if there is a recruit out there with these sort of ties but if there is, Butch Jones or Cuonzo Martin need to find and sign them on the spot. Even if it is simply because they know a super model, they need to be offered. The worst thing that happens is you have eye candy in the stands for a couple games a year for at least four seasons. Heck, you could maybe redshirt him the first year and get to see her for five seasons. Obviously I would want the coach to be upfront with the kid if he is terrible and let him know that the only reason he has his scholarship is to guarantee a visit from her X number of times each season. Maybe you could even plan your recruiting weekends around these visits. I would be willing to bet on a marked improvement in recruiting.
Who’s that? Oh that’s just Chrissy Teigen. She hangs out here quit a bit. She is like an actress or artist or something. I’m just saying, it wouldn’t be the worst thing to ever happen here.
5. Cordarrelle Patterson Actually Passes His Classes and Returns For Senior Year
Granted out of this entire list, this one is probably the one that is the greatest long shot. I have it on terrible authority that Patterson just sleeps through all his classes. Do you blame him though? He has an incredible gift and will be making millions in just a few short months. However, next year he would be the featured receiver in an offense that is going to be decent. I’m laugh just thinking about how opposing coaches would react to the announcement that Patterson is returning. He is the only player on this team that could out Oregon Oregon. Muschamp sits down to enjoy his morning skinny peppermint mocha, reads the headline that Patterson is returning, and spits it all over his labradoodle. We all know it would be great. Unfortunately we all know there is a reason this one wasn’t under the tree this morning.
4. Butch Jones Wears The Orange Pants
I don’t care what you say, you know deep down in your heart that your favorite thing about Derek Dooley over the last two seasons were those pants. Jones more then likely has better fashion sense but how bad A would it be if he struts out of the tunnel in Eugene next year sporting the orange britches. The Ducks come out in their Nikegon costume and Butch just ups the ante walking out of the tunnel like Samuel L. Jackson in The Matrix straight to the sideline and calls a play drawn up for Cordarrelle Patterson who has returned for his senior season that puts a TD on the board for Tennessee. Admit it, you would tear up a little bit because that is the moment you would realize we are great again.
3. Nathan Peterman Abstaining from Alcohol
If he can do this he will already be 120% more popular than his predecessor Tyler Bray. Although, the “Jeff Driskel Throws Zima Bottles!” sign at College Gameday this year was priceless. That sign doesn’t happen if Bray isn’t using empty Miller Lite bottles to practice his out routes.
2. The University of Tennessee Fires Jimmy Cheek
I am flat out embarrassed that this university is represented by a man who chooses to cure his hunger pangs by eating his own nose gold. I mean really, name one good thing Cheek has done for this university. If you think of something leave it in the comment box. I think he should have been fired on the spot for snacking on boogers at the Butch Jones press conference. Don’t believe it happened? Watch this video. Cheek is in the lower right.
1. We All Wake Up and Realize the Last 5 Years Have Been a Bad Dream
Remember the “Who Shot JR” dream storyline in Dallas? Can that PLEASE happen here??? I mean honestly. Can we just wake up one day and it be a clear crisp December morning in Atlanta, Tennessee taking on LSU later that evening led by quarterback Eric Ainge? I think that’s where things really went south. Any time you fall backwards into a championship game such as what happened that year, and you come out of it with nothing but a debilitating loss and then 4 years of anguish, you can point to that being the tipping point. The next year Fulmer was fired, then the Kiffin debacle, then the Dooley experiment. Honestly I just want to wake up and realize I was on a really bad trip. That would be the greatest Christmas present of all.
Alas, more then likely none of these things will happen. Nine is the most probable, but even then I won’t feel good about it because it means Florida won a game. There is light at the end of the tunnel Vol nation. We just have to wait until August 31st to begin to see it. In another five years I honestly think that we will point to this hire as the one that brought us back. The worst day on Rocky Top is still better than the best day anywhere else and believe me, fan of any other team, if you think we are obnoxious now, just wait until we are back on top. There is a whole ‘nother level.