published Sunday, August 25th, 2013

2013 College Blitz - UT Clashing colors

Break down of the Tennessee Vols 2013 schedule

August 31 vs. Austin Peay

6 p.m. at Neyland Stadium, Knoxville

• TV/Radio: Pay-per-view/106.5 FM

• History: First meeting

• Preseason questions: The Governors, playing their first game against an SEC opponent, were 2-9 last season. First-year Vols coach Butch Jones faced Austin Peay while at Cincinnati in 2011, a 72-10 Bearcats win. Will Tennessee, which has an 18-game win streak in home openers, kick off Jones’ tenure in a similar fashion?

September 7 vs. W. Kentucky

12:21 p.m. at Neyland Stadium, Knoxville

• TV/Radio: WDSI/106.5 FM

• History: UT leads the series 1-0 after winning 63-7 in the 2009 opener.

• Preseason questions: Former Arkansas coach Bobby Petrino brings the Hilltoppers to Knoxville. Antonio Andrews, a 1,728-yard rusher last season, returns from a 7-6 team in 2012. Can Petrino, who won his only game against Tennessee while the Razorbacks’ coach, a 49-7 evisceration in 2011, find a replacement for Kawuan Jakes at quarterback in time to orchestrate an upset?

September 14 at Oregon

Autzen Stadium, Eugene, Ore.

• TV/Radio: ABC, ESPN or ESPN2/106.5 FM (3:30 p.m.)

• History: Oregon outscored UT 35-0 in the second half of a 48-13 win in Knoxville in 2010, the only meeting between the programs.

• Preseason questions: The Ducks led the nation in scoring last season, and though Chip Kelly now coaches the NFL’s Philadelphia Eagles, they’re not expected to skip a beat with Marcus Mariota, a second-year starter at quarterback, and De’Anthony Thomas’s game-breaking speed. First-year coach Mark Helfrich’s team begins the season as a top-five team with national-title aspirations. How will the Vols handle another West Coast trip after losing their previous two to California in 2007 and UCLA in 2008?

September 21 at Florida

Ben Hill Griffin Stadium, Gainesville, Fla.

• TV/Radio: TBA/106.5 FM

• History: Florida leads the series 23-19 and has won the past eight meetings.

• Preseason questions: To end a losing streak that’s nearing a decade, Tennessee must knock off a Florida team challenging Georgia and South Carolina for SEC East supremacy. The Vols last won in “The Swamp” in 2003. With the loss of tailback Mike Gillespie, a preseason of injuries and an unproven receiving corps, will the Gators be able to generate enough offensively to push the streak to nine?

September 28 vs. S. Alabama

Neyland Stadium, Knoxville

• TV/Radio: TBA/106.5 FM

• History: First meeting

• Preseason questions: The Jaguars are making their Football Bowl Subdivision debut after a two-year transition phase in which they went 8-15. Playing last season in the Sun Belt, South Alabama won just one conference game during a 2-11 season. What will the Jaguars’ first full year at this level bring?

October 5 vs. Georgia

Neyland Stadium, Knoxville

• TV/Radio: TBA/106.5 FM

• History: UT leads the series 21-19-2, but the Bulldogs have won the past three meetings.

• Preseason questions: In Tennessee’s last win in the series, a 45-19 whipping in 2009, Willie Martinez and John Jancek, now the Vols’ secondary coach and defensive coordinator, were on Georgia’s staff as defensive coordinator and linebackers coach. Behind quarterback Aaron Murray, the Bulldogs are trying to reach the SEC title game for a third consecutive season. Can Georgia’s defense, which lost 11 players with 15 or more starts and returns just four starters, do enough to take advantage of a prolific offense?

October 19 vs. South Carolina

Neyland Stadium, Knoxville

• TV/Radio: TBA/106.5 FM

• History: UT leads the series 22-7-2 but has lost the past three meetings.

• Preseason questions: Steve Spurrier will bring a visiting team to Knoxville for the 15th time in his long coaching career, but much of the hoopla surrounding this game will be the rematch between Tennessee left tackle Antonio “Tiny” Richardson and South Carolina’s all-universe defensive end Jadeveon Clowney. The Gamecocks’ three-game win streak in the series is a first for a program that’s 31-9 the past three seasons. Can Spurrier coach his way to a 15th win against Tennessee?

October 26 at Alabama

Bryant-Denny Stadium, Tuscaloosa, Ala.

• TV/Radio: TBA/106.5 FM

• History: Alabama leads the series 50-38-7 and hasn’t lost to UT since 2006.

• Preseason questions: The two-time defending national champions have beaten Tennessee by exactly 31 points in each of the past three seasons. Nick Saban hasn’t lost to Tennessee as the Crimson Tide’s coach, and the Vols last won in Tuscaloosa in 2003, the memorable five-overtime thriller. How much will a new coach help Tennessee close the gap on the Tide?

November 2 at Missouri

Memorial Stadium, Columbia, Mo.

• TV/Radio: TBA/106.5 FM

• History: Missouri won the first meeting of the series in a four-overtime win in Knoxville last season.

• Preseason questions: The Tigers’ four-overtime victory in Knoxville last November triggered Tennessee’s coaching change. In their first SEC season, Missouri struggled with injuries and limped to a 5-7 record, dropping games to Syracuse and Texas A&M to round out a disappointing debut. Can quarterback James Franklin return to his 2011 form, when he accounted for nearly 4,000 yards running and throwing and scored 36 touchdowns?

November 9 vs. Auburn

Neyland Stadium, Knoxville

• TV/Radio: TBA/106.5 FM

• History: Auburn leads the series 27-21-3 and has won the past five meetings, and UT’s last win came in Knoxville in 1999.

• Preseason questions: Two of the league’s new coaches face off when the Tigers, now under Gus Malzahn, visit Knoxville for the first time since 2009. The two programs played every year from 1956 to 1991, but the annual rivalry was a casualty of the SEC’s expansion and introduction of divisions in 1992. Can Auburn find an adequate quarterback to power Malzahn’s unique and productive system?

November 23 vs. Vanderbilt

Neyland Stadium, Knoxville

• TV/Radio: TBA/106.5 FM

• History: UT leads the series 73-28-5, and Vanderbilt’s only wins in the series since 1982 came in 2005 and last season, a 41-18 whipping in Nashville.

• Preseason questions: The Commodores have made this in-state game a rivalry under second-year coach James Franklin. Vanderbilt lost in overtime in Knoxville in 2011 before hammering the final nail into Derek Dooley’s coaching coffin last November, but Jones, as Cincinnati’s coach, beat Vanderbilt and Franklin 31-24 in the 2011 Liberty Bowl in Memphis. Will Franklin be able to continue to momentum without quarterback Jordan Rodgers and tailback Zac Stacy?

November 30 at Kentucky

Commonwealth Stadium, Lexington, Ky.

• TV/Radio: TBA/106.5 FM

• History: UT leads the series 75-24-9 and has won 27 of the past 28 meetings.

• Preseason questions: Tennessee’s last visit to Lexington produced Kentucky’s streak-busting win. The Wildcats’ 10-7 triumph with a receiver playing quarterback snapped a 26-year stretch of futility against their border rivals. New coach Mark Stoops has rejuvenated the Wildcats’ recruiting efforts, but can Kentucky make similar progress on the field?

about Patrick Brown...

Patrick Brown has been the University of Tennessee beat writer since January 2011. A native of Memphis, Brown graduated from UT in May of 2010 with a bachelor’s degree in Journalism/Electronic Media and worked at the Knoxville News Sentinel for two years on the sports editorial staff and as a freelance contributor. If it’s the NBA, the NFL or SEC football and basketball, he’s probably reading about it or watching it on TV. Contact him ...

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