Reeling Tennessee's open date comes at perfect time

The first 10 quarters of Tennessee's 2020 football season yielded a 31-27 win at South Carolina, a 35-12 pounding of Missouri and a 21-17 halftime lead at No. 3 Georgia.

The past 10 quarters for the Volunteers have contained Georgia's 27-0 second-half surge, the historically heinous 34-7 home loss to Kentucky and Saturday's predictable 48-17 humbling against longtime rival Alabama.

Seems like a good time to hit the pause button, and a pause button is what Tennessee has with this week's open date.

"An open date is always good, especially when you're in SEC ball, and in the case of this year, we have nothing but SEC ball," Tennessee senior defensive end Matthew Butler said Saturday night after the latest lopsided loss to the Crimson Tide saddled the Vols with a 2-3 record with five league contests to play.