Oct. 14, 2012
TENNESSEE TIDBITS Tennessee's all-time record is now 797-340-53 overall
The Vols lead the series with the Bulldogs, 28-16-1.UT is now 11-3 under Derek Dooley when scoring 25 or more points and 24-5 when scoring 20 or more.
Tennessee is 3-3 in coin tosses this season after winning today's toss and did not receive the opening kickoff for just the second time in six games this season.
Today's attendance is 57,831, the third-largest crowd in Mississippi State history.
THIRD QUARTER DOMINANCE Tennessee dominated every facet of the third quarter, scoring 10 points to move back within three of Mississippi State.
The Vols recorded 183 yards of total offense on 28 plays while holding the Bulldogs to just 10 yards on eight plays.
UT also notched 10 first downs in the quarter while holding MSU to zero. Tennessee had just five first downs in the entire first half.
PATTERSON PULLING DOUBLE DUTY With a 98-yard kickoff return and an 11-yard reception, Cordarrelle Patterson became just the fifth player in Tennessee history with a touchdown via return and a either a touchdown by rushing or receiving.
o Touchdown By Receiving/Rushing and Return In a Game WRACKING UP THE TACKLES BRAY-WATCH YOUNG GROWING UP BARTHOLOMEW WITH FIRST SCORE OPENING DRIVE SUCCESS RAJION RUNNING THE ROCK SACK BY SMITH ROGERS' BEST SEASON PRESTIGE WORLDWIDE TRAILING AT THE HALF BULLDOGS RECOVER ONSIDE KICK TENNESSEE CAPTAINS FOR STARTERS
o Carl Pickens (louisville 1991) 75-yd rec./67-yd punt return
o Willie Gault (Kentucky 1980) 48-yd rec./92-yd kickoff return
o Gary Moore (auburn 1979) 10-yd rush/98-yd kickoff return
o Stanley Morgan (Maryland 1975) 50-yd rush/70-yd punt return
o Cordarrelle Patterson (Miss State 2012) - 98-yd kickoff return/11-yd rec.
The last Vol to return a conventional KO for a TD was Mark Jones against Alabama on Oct. 26, 2002. Bret Smith returned an onside kick 44 yards at South Carolina on Oct. 30, 2004.
Patterson's return ties for the fifth longest in school history and is the longest since Leonard Scott returned one 100 yards against Georgia on Oct. 9, 1999.
The 98-yard return was Tennessee's longest play this season, surpassing a 72-yard reception by Zach Rogers against NC State on Aug. 31. Patterson's longest play had been a 67-yard touchdown carry against the Wolfpack.
Patterson now has six touchdowns this season with two rushing, three receiving and the kickoff return.
Patterson finished with 195 all-purpose yards, tying his career best set at Georgia State (57 rushing, 25 receiving and 113 kickoff return yards)
Johnson became the first Vol with 20 or more tackles since Tom Fisher had 21 tackles at Auburn (in Birmingham) on Sept. 26, 1964.
Johnson has recorded 10 or more tackles in each of the last four games with 11 in each of the previous three contests. Today marks his seventh career game with double-digit tackles.
For Lathers, it is his first game this season with 10 or more tackles and the fifth of his career. The last time Lathers had 10+ tackles was at Vanderbilt on Nov. 20, 2010, with 10.
Moore's 10 tackles tie his career high set against Akron, the only other time he has tallied double-digit tackles.
The 148 yards passing were the lowest of the season for Bray. HIs previous low was 267 against Florida.
Smith's sack was his third career sack, but first in over two years. His last sack was against Ole Miss on Nov. 13, 2010.
Smith finished with four quarterback hurries in today's contest.
The last onside kick attempted against the Vols was at Vanderbilt on Nov. 20, 2010 (recovered by UT's Denarius Moore).
McNeil becomes the first true freshman to start for the Vols this season after having seven different freshmen start a total of 39 games last year, including at least one in every game, two in 11 games and three or more in eight of the team's 12 contests.
WRACKING UP THE TACKLES Tennessee linebackers A.J. Johnson (21) and Herman Lathers (12) both reached double digits in tackles, as did safety Byron Moore (10). Johnson set a new personal best, while Moore tied his career best.
BRAY-WATCH Tyler Bray threw two TD passes against Mississippi State, giving him 51 for his career. It also marked his 17th career game with multiple TD throws, all of which have come in his last 19 games.
YOUNG GROWING UP Sophomore tailback Devrin Young finished as the Vols' leading rusher with career highs in both rushing attempts (13) and rushing yards (58).
BARTHOLOMEW WITH FIRST SCORE Redshirt senior fullback Ben Bartholomew caught his first career touchdown with a 10-yard grab in the fourth quarter. It was his 12th career catch.
OPENING DRIVE SUCCESS Tennessee scored on its opening drive of the game for the second time this season with a six-yard TD run by Rajion Neal. The Vols also scored a TD on their opening drive against Georgia State.
RAJION RUNNING THE ROCK Rajion Neal scored a touchdown for the fifth time in six games this season with a six-yard run to cap the Vols' opening drive of the game. It was his fifth rushing touchdown of the season and seventh overall (two receiving).
SACK BY SMITH Jacques Smith sacked MSU QB Tyler Russell for a 10-yard loss in the first quarter. It was his first sack of the season, seventh for the Vols and just the fourth allowed by Mississippi State this year. UT and MSU entered today's game tied for the fewest sacks allowed in the SEC with three each.
ROGERS' BEST SEASON With his three catches tonight, Zach Rogers now has 17 for the year, setting a new single-season career high. He previously had 14 catches in each of the last two seasons and had 14 through just five contests coming into tonight's game.
PRESTIGE WORLDWIDE After his second-quarter kickoff return for a touchdown, Cordarrelle Patterson was trending Worldwide on Twitter for the third time this year. He was also trending Worldwide during Tennessee's games against NC State and Georgia.
TRAILING AT THE HALF Tennessee trailed at halftime for the first time this season. The Vols led at the half against NC State (22-14), Georgia State (28-6) and Florida (14-10) and were tied at the half against Akron (23-23) and Georgia (30-30).
BULLDOGS RECOVER ONSIDE KICK Mississippi State's second-quarter onside kick recovery was the first against Tennessee since Alabama recovered the opening kickoff in Tuscaloosa on Oct, 20, 2007.
TENNESSEE CAPTAINS #20 Rajion Neal, #58 Marlon Walls, #70 Ja'Wuan James
FOR STARTERS Freshman strong safety LaDarrell McNeil earned his first start of the season.