Days leading up to the University of Tennessee vs. Georgia football game, Head football coach, Butch Jones, announces that the game will be the platform to unveil the Smokey Gray uniforms. Here’s one of those:
As a UT fan, how could you not get pumped? The last time the team strayed from the traditional orange and white uniforms was in 2009. That rainy Halloween night back in 2009, the Vols donned black jerseys. In this game an unranked UT team defeated No. 21 ranked South Carolina. This was the only “big” win for then coach, Lane Kiffin.
So, when the smokey gray uniforms were unveiled the hope was that the nontraditional uniform would work its magic again. This Saturday, UT played against the No. 6 Georgia Bulldogs.
In a sold out game in Neyland Stadium, the smokey gray uniformed Vols were definitely the underdogs.
With the new uniforms giving fans and players a moral boast before the game, would it help the team pull out a win? One thing was for sure, the smokey gray uniforms took social media by storm. How would it translate on the scoreboard?
During the first half, I unfortunately had to listen to the game via iHeartRadio at work. However, there wasn’t much going on, UT’s offense only scored 3 giving Georgia a 14 point lead going into halftime. The second half was where the game definitely got interesting.
Coming out of the locker room, UT seemed to have a different mindset. The offense scored a touchdown and soon after Georgia was being forced to punt. A UT freshman blocked the punt, was scooped up by another UT freshman, and into the end zone he went. This put UT even with Georgia, 17-17.
By the end of the 4th quarter the game was tied at 31-31 and the unranked UT Team had forced Georgia into Overtime. The Vols’ hopes were dashed when a failed touchdown attempt led to Georgia being able to score a 42-yard field goal; ending the game with a final score of 34-31.
This heartbreaking loss for the Vols was tough to swallow. They had come so close to overturning the ranked Georgia team, that it is one that will not soon be forgotten. Some made the claim that it was the “power of the smokey gray uniforms” that help UT play so well. I on the other hand disagree.
The smokey gray uniforms might have been a great moral boost for anyone who bleeds orange, but the reason UT came so close to beating Georgia is the heart they showed. It didn’t matter Georgia was ranked and it was supposed to be a blowout game, UT played for every second of those four quarters. That heart gives UT fans hope for the future. Brick by brick Butch Jones is building a strong football team. One thing is for sure, this game makes the future a little brighter for UT as they have two weeks to get ready for South Carolina.