Monday, January 10, 2011

Looking forward: Tennessee's football schedule in 2011

The sting of the Music City Bowl still remains, which means we should probably start looking forward to the Tennessee Volunteer's 2011 football schedule. Despite the bowl loss, the team appears to be on the upswing. Here is the schedule:

Sept. 3 vs. Montana
Sept. 10 vs. Cincinnati
Sept. 17 at Florida
Oct. 1 vs. Buffalo
Oct. 8 vs. Georgia
Oct. 15 vs. LSU
Oct. 22 at Alabama
Oct. 29 vs. South Carolina
Nov. 5 vs. Middle Tennessee
Nov. 12 at Arkansas
Nov. 19 vs. Vanderbilt
Nov. 26 at Kentucky

The Volunteers play eight of its 12 games at Neyland Stadium, including five of the first six. The non-conference schedule is weaker than most years with the most challenging game coming against either Cincinnati or Middle Tennessee. Once again, October is the make or break month for the team as it faces several tough opponents, such as Alabama and LSU.

Of course, between now and then, several important questions must be answered. Will the team be able to develop a consistent running game? Who will fill the shoes of Nick Reveiz at middle linebacker? Will a consistent kicker emerge?

There will be time to debate all this and more in the coming months. The schedule practically guarantees a return to a bowl game. But Tennessee fans will be hungry for more this year.

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