The Ole Hotty Toddy team reached out to our fellow FanSided site, AllForTennessee.com, for their input of the upcoming matchup between the Tennessee Volunteers and the #3 Ole Miss Rebels. This Saturday will be the first time the Vols have traveled to Oxford since 2009, and we all remember why Vol fans hate the name – McCluster.
Zach Ragan is the editor of AllForTennessee.com. He has a full staff that has formed one of the most updated Tennessee Volunteers sites on the web. You can follow Zach on Twitter @AllForTennessee or @zachAFT. In our preview with AFT, we have put together a table of who we think will win in each category of the game. Below that, check out our sit-down interview with Zach on previewing the Volunteers.
[table id=39 /]
Q & A with All For Tennessee
Ole Hotty Toddy: Has Vols QB Justin Worley lived up to expectations this season? What will the Rebels defense see from him?
"All for Tennessee: I think he’s lived up to expectations and then some. He’s not the most talented guy in the world, but he’s done a great job of managing the offense and not giving the ball away. We saw in the Florida game what happens to Tennessee’s offense if he’s forced to leave the game. I think you’ll see him keep the ball against Ole Miss maybe more than he has so far this season. Tennessee’s run game has struggled this season and they’ll have to get creative to move the ball against the Rebels."
OHT: Which players on the Vols offense and defense could make an impact in this matchup?
"AFT: LB Jalen Reeves-Maybin and CB Cam Sutton are probably the Vols two biggest playmakers, on either side of the ball. They’re both very fast and every time there’s a big play for the Vols on defense, on of those two are typically right in the middle of it."
"On offense I think RB Jalen Hurd could have the biggest impact. He’s obviously Tennessee’s best rusher. If he plays well, then Tennessee could have a chance to move the ball against Ole Miss."
OHT: How would you describe this Ole Miss defense?
"AFT: Nasty. Stingy. All of the things you think of when you think typical SEC defense. They’re fast and they wreak havoc and create turnovers. They’ll live in Tennessee’s backfield."
OHT: This will be the first matchup between Ole Miss and Tennessee in four years. Recall your favorite matchup between the two?
"AFT: Probably the matchups in 1996 and 1997. Just know what that game represented to the Manning family (although I’m sure it was very stressful). I think those two standout the most to me. The Vols won both games pretty easily, not something that will happen this week."
OHT: What will the Vols have to do pull of an upset in Oxford?
"AFT: Pretty simple. They have to run the ball. They haven’t been able to generate a rushing attack all season, not even against Chattanooga. They aren’t going to beat Ole Miss by relying on the passing game. If they want to have any chance at upsetting the Rebels, they have to figure out a way to run the ball."