Ask not for whom the urnge bell tolls…

In his most recent Mailbag, Bruce Feldman gets pretty specific about SOD’s immediate future.

From @timHill_:How many wins does Dooley need this year to stay safe?

At least eight. If Derek Dooley ends up 7-5 in the regular season, I’ve heard from people around the UT program that he’ll be gone. Remember, there is a new AD there (Dave Hart), and there are going to be some intriguing candidates available. Alabama DC Kirby Smart for starters.

Feldman thinks the schedule breaks nicely for nine wins, but there’s a fairly brutal four-game stretch the Vols have to endure mid-season:

Aug. 31 NC State (in Atlanta)
Sep. 8 Georgia State
Sep. 15 Florida
Sep. 22 Akron
Sep. 29 at Georgia
Oct. 6 OPEN DATE
Oct. 13 at Mississippi State
Oct. 20 Alabama
Oct. 27 at South Carolina
Nov. 3 Troy
Nov. 10 Missouri
Nov. 17 at Vanderbilt
Nov. 24 Kentucky

That’s three tough road games and Alabama.  It’s arguable UT loses all four, which would require a perfect slate against the likes of Florida (which Feldman notes has beaten Tennessee by double-digit margins five straight years) and Vanderbilt (I couldn’t help it) for Dooley to make it to the eight-win level.

The good thing for him is that his team returns more starters than any other school in the conference.  But the Vols are still thin in spots and a couple of key injuries could derail things just as badly as last year.

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18 Comments

Filed under Because Nothing Sucks Like A Big Orange

18 responses to “Ask not for whom the urnge bell tolls…

  1. TennesseeDawg

    Missouri will knock off the Vols as well. There is at least 5 losses in there.

  2. AthensHomerDawg

    They travel to Vandy as well. They kinda stole that last victory and Vandy will be pumped I’m sure.

  3. Just reading the title, I thought you are referring to the BCSNC at the Orange Bowl were UGA seem to be a shoo in. LOL I am sure the Campus Bell will toll that night. LOL again.

  4. W Cobb Dawg

    They’ll be lucky to go 6-6. SOD’s a gonner.

    • Charles Grant

      +1. Losses to Florida, Georgia, Bama, South Carolina , Missouri, Mississippi State and likely N.C. State, as well. Plus, Vandy and Kentucky have a decent chance at beating them, too. I have the Vols going 5-7 or even 4-8. If the 6th loss comes at South Carolina SOD might very well get the ax after that game.

  5. UGA70

    I could easily see only 4-6 wins.

  6. WH

    Personally I’m hoping he eeks out the eight wins, trips up one of our division foes along the way (I want Spurrier gone much more) and keeps his job for at least another couple seasons. I don’t think he’s going to find longstanding success in Kville…which means the more they drag out getting rid of him the better. Ditto for Muschamp, though I think he’s at least got a decent chance of succeeding at UF.

  7. Cojones

    Good thought, WH. Plus the thought of Smart taking his place and us facing two former Dawgs leading FU and Tenn. Shit. Anyway, we could begin the slaughter that signals his death knell and send him to private practice (not football). It’s good anyway you turn.

  8. Macallanlover

    I don’t see anyway that schedule equals 8 wins for TN. If they lose the expected games, and NCST plus Miss St., I wouldn’t be surprised to see them make a change before year end. UT did that with before and got a jump on everyone waiting to make a change at season’s end. Of course, they had first pick and still ended up with Junior so that strategy didn’t work out so well. But it did get them a jump on everyone else.

  9. Please forgive me, Barbara

    Given UTenn’s recent performances in the Dome, mark the NC State game down as a loss, too.

  10. For all the Mark Richt haters out there I propose the following question, ” How is Coach Phil Fulmer lookng to the UT fan base right now?”
    And just to pile on;Dooley is a dead man walking. It’s already over but the move back to Athens, the retirement home for ex-D1 head coaches.