With Florida up next on schedule, the Tennessee Volunteers have called a players-only meeting to get everyone on the same page.
Despite starting the season off 2-0 and outscoring opponents by 52 points over the span, the Tennessee Volunteers called a players-only meeting ahead of Saturday’s matchup with the Florida Gators in Gainesville, according to Off the Hook with Dave Hooker.
Players-only meetings don’t always mean that something is terribly wrong, but they typically aren’t called out of the blue either. For Tennessee, a shoddy offensive performance against Austin Peay prompted the conversation.
Volunteers quarterback Joe Milton completed just one of his first eight passes against the Governors, but it wasn’t all on him (even if Milton took the blame in the meeting). Four different receivers were charged with a drop on Saturday.
Tennessee ended up playing better in the second half and won, 30-13, after leading 13-6 at the half. The Vols might not have covered the 48-point spread, but they still won with relative ease.
So why call a players-only meeting then?
Conventional wisdom says that the players are unhappy with their performance and are simply holding themselves responsible. And tight end Jacob Warren confirmed as much on Monday when speaking to the press.
“As an offense, we’re expecting to score a lot of points, and then we just didn’t quite move the ball the way we wanted to,” Warren said. “It wasn’t quite efficient enough in the red zone, for our standards.”
Tennessee head coach Josh Heupel told reporters to plan for better execution against Florida, but that doesn’t guarantee anything.
The Swamp is one of the most intimidating venues in all of college football, and the Florida faithful will be even at full force on Saturday. The fans are hoping for revenge against Tennessee from last year, and Billy Napier and Co. are seeking their first rivalry win at UF.
Not to mention that UT has not won back-to-back games in this series since 2003 and 2004, and it has only won once on the road since then.
Tennessee might be favored on paper, but the players are treating this like a must-win game. If Florida takes an early lead — or Tennessee makes an early mistake — the snowball effect could take hold.
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