Saturday night at Neyland Stadium was more than a missed call


By now everyone has seen what happened at Neyland Stadium late Saturday night until early Sunday morning. One of the worst refereed games I’ve seen in some time ended up boiling over after what appeared to be a Tennessee conversion of the 4th and 24th with less than a minute to go was ruled like a number business on the lows. Fans flooded the field with empty beer cans, water bottles, a golf ball and a dishonest bottle of mustard.

Tennessee ended up recovering the ball with a chance to win, but UT quarterback Hendon Hooker was injured and substitute Joe Milton had to come in for the last two games. He ran out of bounds 10 meters from the end zone at the end of the time limit.

No one really cares, however. All they want to talk about is what happened in the bottom bowl. Cheerleaders and party members took cover as debris rained down on Shields-Watkins Field and delayed the game by 20 minutes.

It was a big blow to the University of Tennessee and something that shouldn’t have happened.

But let me tell you something: I’m not going to sit here and let the usual suspects in the national media vilify Tennessee fans like they’ve been doing for many years now and act like it’s something that could only have happened in Knoxville. I’m also not going to let them act like it’s an incident caused by a bad decision or a bad team of officials.

What happened on Saturday night at Neyland Stadium was the culmination of a 12-year-old descent into oblivion, started by the man who was back in the building for the first time as a coach – leader, this time on the opposing sideline. Since the day Lane Kiffin packed his bags for Los Angeles, Tennessee has gotten a little crazier every day and many journalists who cover college football have been delighted to do so every step of the way.

From the Derek Dooley era to all the Butch Jones goofs to Schiano Sunday – where a lot of it comes from – to Jeremy Pruitt. Anytime you thought things couldn’t get worse, they did. And Vols fans naturally grew more and more impatient as the media grew more and more dazed with each rung, the Vols fell down the scale of national notoriety.

So when things finally went wrong as they did on Saturday, those who took every opportunity to vilify Tennessee fans finally had their chance. It will never get easier than it is today, whatever the context that may exist. They don’t care.

I really wish no one clicked on it, but you all have to read the lede of this article by Pete Thamel. Better yet, I’ll let you read it here.

Yahoo Sports – As dozens and dozens of items flew across the field – from water bottles to a mustard bottle to a yellow golf ball – Tennessee’s reputation for having the worst fan base in college football gradually increased. As each item crashed onto the turf, more empirical evidence added to a rich history of collective classlessness.

Are we really serious right now? Did someone die that I didn’t know about?

There are so many things I want to say, but I think most of it can be boiled down to this: you would be very hard pressed to find fans of a college or professional sports team in America who are as passionate as the fans of Tennessee. Until the last minute, those same fans known today as “petulant” and “classless” had produced one of the best college football environments in recent memory. This is the reason why these same journalists can make a very good living writing about sports.

I’m just not going to sit here and have hundreds of thousands of people including myself that I know to be good decent shit by those in their ivory towers. Like a lot of those at Neyland Stadium last night, I’ve had enough.

This would have happened anywhere in the SEC. And it would have happened much sooner than it took for it to happen in Knoxville. I wonder if the same people describing those who wear orange and white as the worst people in our society feel the same about the Ole Miss fans, who bombed the Tennessee basketball team. waste less than three years ago because of an official call?

Hell, bottles were thrown in London this morning by Jaguars fans. Have you heard a peek at this?

I moved on. We are tired. Tired of losing, tired of being the butt of all the jokes and tired of being treated like shit. So while I certainly don’t approve of what happened in Neyland last night, I really understand it.

And one last thing. Anyone who has watched this entire football game and is being honest with themselves knows what a lot of people aren’t ready to admit: Tennessee looked pretty good. In a game in which every break and every call was on the Rebels’ side, the Vols had a chance to win the game against the nation’s No.13 team and just didn’t make that last play to pull it off. . But they might have the guys to do it soon enough.

So as the Pat Fordes and Dan Wolkens of the world continue to kick Tennessee fans while they are ashore, there will come a day – very soon, I believe – that the Flights will be back to win. these matches with a certain degree of regularity. And when that happens, it will make the silence even sweeter.

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