An exciting day of SEC football ended with the lights on at Williams-Brice Stadium when the Tennessee Volunteers took on the South Carolina Gamecocks. Many believed that this matchup would be closer than the experts predicted, and that it was. It took a huge break on special teams for the Vols to escape Columbia with a 31-27 win.
In the first half, the defense was swarming to the football. Sophomore linebacker, Henry To'o To'o had a pick six two minutes into the second quarter. That interception return was accompanied with some great blocking from Junior safety, Alontae Taylor; Taylor had six total tackles, and one tackle for a loss on the evening.
After halftime, the defense began to struggle with the wide receiver duo of Shi Smith and Xavier Legette. The Gamecock receivers combined for 201 receiving yards and one touchdown.
Yet again the quarterback play of Jarret Guarantano was a major issue with the Tennessee offense. The Senior was missing throws left and right and took too much time to read the defense. Despite the underwhelming quarterback play, Tennessee was able to find their true strengths on offense. The one-two punch of Eric Gray and Ty Chandler combined for 126 rushing yards and one touchdown.
This Saturday, Tennessee will have their home-opener against the Missouri Tigers and South Carolina will travel to Gainesville, Florida to take on the #3 Florida Gators.