The No. 1 Alabama Crimson Tide will roll into Knoxville this Saturday riding an 11-game winning streak in the series against the Vols. Nick Saban’s crew is as talented as ever. They have what looks to be their best quarterback of the Saban Era in Tua Tagovailoa. Alabama seems invincible, especially when matching up with a team like Tennessee. However, contrary to popular belief, there is actually a blueprint to overthrow the evil empire.
Remember when Derek Dooley famously went to the student body and scooped up Derrick Brodus off streets of campus to solve his kicker problem? Well, this is what Jeremy Pruitt can do to help his everything problem when it comes to planning for the Tide. The only difference is that Pruitt should use former players, not current students. For example, Josh Dobbs is available and easily disguisable. Pittsburgh is not going to miss him on Saturday night. Plus, he probably knows the playbook better than Ben Roethlisberger, who has been in the habit calling his own plays at the line this year. Dobbs has a history of causing problems for Alabama. Vol Nation was introduced to the dynamic quarterback in 2014 against the Tide. The Vols lost 34-20, but it was Dobbs who led Tennessee to 17 unanswered points and kept them in the game. He also was a factor the following year in the near-upset down in Tuscaloosa. The Vols can use him on first and second downs.
This will allow for Jarrett Guarantano to concentrate on third downs and keep his hot streak going. Dobbs could even play as receiver on some trick plays. The key here is to disguise Dobbs. All the staff has to do is throw some fake eyebrows and hair on him. Tis’ the season right? As for defensive help, call on Eric Berry. It is my estimation that the Kansas City Chiefs are being ultra-cautious with his injury. He looks ready to me. Sneak the defensive back in town and shave his mane. This is a tough one because the look matches Berry’s personality. He looks like a character off of Game of Thrones and he is as tough and as ragged as they come. At some point though, full measures are warranted. It will be important to keep their helmets on at all times. They will need to be given fake names. However, here is where Dooley’s influence comes in: they are students who garnered walk-on status due to their persistent presence around the program. They will be highlighted going forward and surrounded with questions, but the Vols can take care of that later. The important issue is taking care of Bama.
Vol Nation will need to extend their beliefs and think with an open-mind on this one. The game forecast is showing a likely chance of rain. The Vols can take advantage of this by channeling their inner Hinduism and praying/asking for rain and lightning. For those of you who don’t know, Indra is the God of storms and war in Vedic Hinduism. On Saturday, there will be rain and war. The Vols need to take full advantage. It is worth noting that Indra is revered for victories over evil empires. It is also said that Indra got a taste of the ’70s before anyone else. The Hindu God liked to indulge in a hallucinogenic drink called Soma. This concoction gave Indra special powers. There is such a common thread here between what the Vols need and what Indra can offer. Maybe striking Tua with lighting isn’t out of the question? Also, it seems like ages since the series has seen a game in bad weather. Maybe with the help of Indra, the Vols can turn the Tide. Hindu for a day. Let’s get weird.
Hear me out on this one. Some wonder how we are going to defend the potent Tide offense. They have covered their first half point spread in every game this season thanks to Tua, who primarily just plays the first half of games. The best way to defend this is to not actually defend. The defense needs to line up on the goal-line and form a human wall. From there, let Alabama decide what to do. Do they try to punch it in right away in the middle or do they run out of bonds and set up a goal-line situation? Either way, something has to give. Tennessee’s defense has not been good in the red zone. Opponents are 17-of-17 scoring in red zone opportunities. Only six of those scores are field goals. The Vols need to see more field goals on the defensive side. This might be the remedy against the firing squad that is Alabama. You also create more possessions for yourself and less plays for the Tide. It can’t hurt.
Deal With The Devil
Desperate times call for desperate measures. The Vols can deal with the future tomorrow, or in this case, after Saturday. If all else fails, Pruitt can make a request to his former boss. The Rainsville, Ala. native is no used car salesman like his predecessor, but I am confident he has the Southern charm to sell Hindu in the Bible Belt. He can use this charm and good report with Nick Satan to lure him into creating a teachable moment for this Alabama team. Saban is notoriously a harsh critic and is known for testing his players from a mental standpoint. Pruitt can sell the pitch to Saban that this team needs humility. Make a deal for whatever you want just to ensure a Vols victory. The Tide look unbeatable and we all know Saban hates hearing about praise for his team. The Tide still has time to regroup and race back into the College Football Playoff picture. If you are going to lose a game and still make the field, losing early is key. If you think they are invincible now, just wait until this team loses a game and Saban can use the Tennessee game as a reference point for overlooking teams.
Needless to say, the Vols will have their hands full. It’s time to pull out all the stops. If the Vols pull a miracle, maybe we can all celebrate like Indra.