Published: Wed, September 06, 2017
Sport | By Wendy Sparks

What just happened? Vols top Jackets in double OT

What just happened? Vols top Jackets in double OT

The 25th-rated Tennessee football team needed a second-half comeback and a big defensive play to win its season opener on the road.

In conjunction with the GOLDOUT game, Georgia Tech's official GOLDOUT t-shirts are now available for purchase.

"I just feel real bad, just like everyone else", said Tide receiver Calvin Ridley, who texted Locksley. We spoke all week about a will to win.

"We'd set up, and we'd run a bunch of two-point plays out of that web thing, a pick screen out of the thing, so we were going to bring the motion, and they took the safety over there", Johnson said, easing into his football jargon, and as you listen, keep this in mind: This was supposed to work.

"When he was describing what he was putting into it, and how he was trying to invest in this city, we thought that was really important". Tennessee's defense faced Georgia Tech's triple option run-dominant offense and had to make adjustments to account for the Yellow Jackets in ways that won't translate to the Sycamores' attack.

Jennings totaled 40 receptions for 580 yards and seven touchdowns in 2016, including the game-winning Hail Mary against Georgia. This February, as he landed the seventh-best recruiting class in the SEC, Jones said that "the only five-star that we even concern ourselves with is a five-star heart". Though they nearly got in, that's just a tough way to lose a game.

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Georgia Tech ran 96 plays, rolled up 655 yards of total offense, 535 of it coming on the ground, and had a player who finished the game with 389 yards and five touchdowns all by himself. The two did the same in the second overtime, before Georgia Tech coach Paul Johnson opted to go for two and the win. Marshall's last-ditch pitch attempt to Benson was ruled a forward pass, a dead ball that ended the game.

Daniel averaged 47.0 yards per punt on six punts and pinned the Yellow Jackets inside their own 20-yard line five times.

Time will tell if Benson and Marshall can continue to bear out their coach's confidence, and if the defense and kicking game can earn more of his trust. The sophomore receiver averaged 29 yards per catch as he hauled in four catches for 115 yards and two scores.

With Georgia Tech's triple option offense, opportunities for Tennessee's offense would be limited and as the first half played on, Dormady and the Vols had a hard time finding an offensive rhythm.

He was confident before making the first start of his career.

Jones ultimately made a decision to stick with the more-experienced Dormady during the game and he was rewarded as he wound up finishing 12-of-17 passing for 169 yards in the second half and overtime with two touchdown passes, including this one to Marquez Calloway who became his go-to target in the second half.

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Georgia Tech ran 7:06 off the clock on the ensuing drive, ending on a one-yard rush and good PAT to pull ahead, 14-7. When it became 21-7 and then 28-14, you figured it was over.

The Volunteers won despite giving up five rushing touchdowns to Georgia Tech quarterback TaQuon Marshall and getting thoroughly dominated statistically Monday night.

UT's Labor Day meeting with the Yellow Jackets will mark the 25th time that the Vols have played on a Monday.

Later in the fourth, Georgia Tech's J.J. Green on his only carry of the game, went 36 yards but fumbled on a hit by Rashaan Gaulden with Micah Abernathy recovering.

Tennessee (1-0) was led by running back John Kelly, who ran 19 times for 128 yards and four touchdowns. But the kick was low, Paul Bain got a hand on it and the game went to OT.

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