Vols

Fanrun Staff Predictions For The 2019 Football Season

Fanrun Staff Predictions For The 2019 Football Season
Tanner Carson

Mandatory Credit: Randy Sartin-USA TODAY Sports

Silly season is over, and it is time to get down to business as Tennessee is back today as the Vols take on Georgia State this afternoon at Neyland Stadium.

With the time for talking done, we at Fanrun Radio got together one last time before the season to give our thoughts and predictions for year two of the Jeremy Pruitt era.

Here are our staff predictions for the 2019 football season:

Cameron Black, Panelist/Video Producer for TalkSports

The offensive line is still the weak point of the team. Slightly improved and shows real progress down the stretch but struggles in the heart of the SEC schedule. Offense looks more explosive and the defense builds on it’s solid season a year ago. The strain of the SEC season wears down the team’s depth and keeps them from breaking out for more wins. All in all, the program shows signs of heading in the right direction.

Record prediction: 7-5

Tanner Carson, Host of Overtime/Digital Editor

I won’t be the first (and certainly won’t be the last) to tell you that you will learn a lot about how a coach’s tenure will go by his second year at his program. Our AJ Cook looked into it not that long ago. That being said, I think that fans will (and should expect to) see improvement when it comes to offensive efficiency and continue to see why Pruitt is considered one of the top defensive-minded coaches in college football.

For once, the OOC and SEC schedules aren’t a complete nightmare. Go 4-0 in non-conference games, win a toss-up of: Mississippi State, South Carolina, Mizzou, and beat the teams you’re supposed to. Yes, that includes Vandy for the love of God.

But, this is Tennessee, some game will inevitably have the stars aligned against us. So, call me part of the hivemind or whatever, I’m going with a reasonable bet.

Record prediction: 7-5

Chance Collins, Co-host of The Blitz

Although I think Tennessee will be a much improved football team in Jeremy Pruitt’s second season, there is still so many uncertainties surrounding this team. How does this OL hold up all year, how efficient is a Trey Smith after sitting out last season? While I’m excited for this new coaching staff and other position groups, Tennessee is still lacking in talent from top to bottom to move the needle in 2019 and get back to doing things the “Tennessee way.”

Record prediction: 7-5

AJ Cook, Digital Contributor

We’re probably not going to beat Georgia, Alabama, or Florida on the road. But we’re all set to go 4-0 in our non-conference slate. So that leaves Missouri, Kentucky, Mississippi State, Vanderbilt, and South Carolina. Surely we go at least 3-2 through all that right? I see 7-5 on the horizon.

Or this season is a nightmare and we go 5-7 again.

Or Pruitt is a mastermind and we go 10-2.

Who are we kidding, this is college football. Anything can happen.

All that’s to say, a bowl game should be the floor, and seven wins should be the goal. I think this Tennessee team, with a new direction on offense and a young, promising defense, will reach that goal.

Record prediction: 7-5

Justin Feist, Executive Producer of Overtime

With the recent clearances of Trey Smith and Aubrey Solomon on either side of the ball, I believe Tennessee will have a strong rebound year and now has the potential to fight for eight wins. Fatigue will catch up and we’ll drop one game to South Carolina, Kentucky, or Mizzou, but I see wins beyond that.

Record prediction: 8-4

Malcolm Harris, Co-Host of Overtime

With a favorable schedule, returning offensive starters, and a fully loaded coaching staff with young talent, I look for Tennessee to make huge strides, especially on offense. Pruitt and Company will also get back to winning ways against Vanderbilt and will pull out a home upset against Georgia.

Do not be surprised if Tennessee has a top-10 defense this year. Everywhere Pruitt has gone, defensive success has followed.

Pair that with a Jim Chaney offense? Get your popcorn ready.

Record prediction: 9-3

Davey Hudson, Executive Producer of 3&OUT

Everyone is intrigued with how Pruitt and Co. will fair in year two. An easier schedule compared to the past few seasons will play in the Vols’ favor, but it is still going to be difficult to finish above 4th in the SEC East. I expect Tennessee to go undefeated in non-conference games. The Vols will be more competitive throughout SEC play, but I do not believe that will translate to more conference wins. I could definitely see them getting to 7-5, but I am going to predict the Vols finish the season at 6-6 (2-6 in the SEC).

Record prediction: 6-6

Matthew King, Intern for Overtime

Following Tennessee’s second consecutive losing season, the fans are looking to Jeremy Pruitt’s team to take a huge leap forward. This offseason, Pruitt made huge moves in the right direction by adding a top-15 recruiting class and upgrades for assistant coaches. Notable additions include Derrick Ansley as DC and Jim Chaney as OC. This team won’t take a huge jump, but I do see the team making it to 7-5 by the end of the season and playing for a semi-decent bowl game.

Record prediction: 7-5

Stetson Marlin, Digital Contributor/Intern for Overtime

I’m going safe by going with a 7-5 record this season for the Vols. I think an 8-4 record is possible, but they will likely drop a game they should win. They should go into the Florida game with a 3-0 record.

There are a number of games that I’m really not sure how Tennessee will do, including games against Florida, Miss. State, South Carolina, Missouri, and Vanderbilt.  I won’t be surprised if the Vols have one of the better offenses in the league, as they have a number of weapons at wide receiver and running back that’ll lead them to a number of wins and maybe even a few upsets.

Record prediction: 7-5

Cody McClure, Co-Host of TalkSports

We’ll win one we shouldn’t (Florida) and lose one we shouldn’t (Mississippi State). Other losses to Alaama, Georgia, and Missouri. Overall positive vibes coming out of this year. An over-achievement for once.

Record prediction: 8-4

Brandon Orrick, Co-host of The Blitz

I think Tennessee will go 7-5. I think you win the four out-of-conference games and they’ll win three out of Vandy, South Carolina, Kentucky and Mississippi State.

Record prediction: 7-5

Logan Quinton, Digital Contributor

There were peaks and valleys in Pruitt’s first year, but I think the one attribute that will stick with the second-year head coach is being one who can pull an upset or two on a yearly basis. His defensive acumen and personality bode well for a team fighting above its weight class more often than not.

With that said, things are turning around on Rocky Top and Pruitt’s imprint is firmly established. Now, it’s just a matter of time before Tennessee becomes prominent once again. I think this year is the first profound step in that direction. The Vols are capable of reeling off eight regular season wins, but many things have to go our way in order for that to happen. Hopefully someone will find the creep who is hiding in a dark basement and abusing the Big Orange voodoo doll and put them to rest. Until that happens, I think Tennessee fights its way to seven regular season wins. We get 8 after the bowl.

Record prediction: 8-5

Julia Ramsey, Executive Producer of TalkSports

Tennessee has a favorable schedule and home-field advantage for key games this season. Jeremy Pruitt will continue to make progress and get the Vols to a bowl game. I think we’ll beat a team we should lose to and lose to a team we should beat. And if that team we lose to is Vanderbilt. . .good luck, Pruitt.

Record prediction: 7-5

Jon Reed, Host of TalkSports

If we aren’t talking about 9-3, what’s the point? All good coaches show you they’re good by year two. Statistically, there’s almost 3x the amount of improvement from year one to year two than there is year two to year three. I anticipate a much improved offensive line and Pruitt to put a stamp on his defense. Take care of business at home against the teams you are “supposed” to beat and spring one upset.

Nine. And. Three.

Record prediction: 9-3

Russell Smith, Host of The Drive

I’m gonna say 7-5 which is not a good record, in my opinion. But considering this team has won nine games the past two years combined, it certainly qualifies as improvement. The key will be winning close games. UT only had two one-score games last year (Auburn and South Carolina). They will probably have a bunch more this year. Hopefully they win more than half of them.

Record prediction: 7-5

Billy Williford, Panelist/Producer for 3&OUT

Can Tennessee see a year two jump under Jeremy Pruitt? The schedule doesn’t appear to be as difficult in years past, so nine wins, right?

Uh, I’m not ready to go there. Sharpie in Georgia State, BYU, Chattanooga, and UAB guaranteed wins. The Vols will get two more against Kentucky and Vanderbilt.

Record prediction: 6-6

Give us your Take...
Vols
Tanner Carson
@TCarson__

UTK alum. Son of Appalachia. Overtime 6-8 p.m. M-F. Digital Editor for Fanrun Radio. More interesting bio coming soon.

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