Ask a Tennessee Volunteer fan who they hate the most and some will say Florida. But, most will probably say Alabama.
The Alabama Crimson Tide and the Tennessee Volunteers just do not like one another.
There are many outstanding football rivalries around the country like Florida State vs Miami. Or, Michigan vs Ohio State and even Ole Miss vs Mississippi State fill the bill as great rivalries.
There are way too many rivalry games to list here such as USC vs UCLA, or Texas vs Oklahoma.
There’s also the Alabama versus Tennessee rivalry which is commonly known as the Third Saturday in October.
Alabama leads the series by 52-37-8 all time. Alabama has dominated every team in the SEC other than Auburn and they lead the Auburn series as well. So, it should come as no surprise that Alabama leads the series with Tennessee.
Alabama was diagnosed as sick and their dynasty was over early in this season by certain members of the media, but they bounced back and are currently second in the standings in the SEC West only behind the LSU Tigers. The Tigers remain on their schedule and Alabama has a way of handling LSU. So, don’t write off the Alabama Crimson Tide any time soon. They have way too many athletes on their roster not to be at least competitive.
Tennessee was expected by some to win the SEC East when the season started. The high expectations came crashing down after an Overtime loss to Oklahoma and then a close loss to Florida, which was followed by another close loss to Arkansas.
Tennessee bounced back with a nice win against Georgia when they had to come back from a 24-3 deficit.
Tennessee is 3-3 on the year, but don’t let the record fool you. They are still a pretty good team and they could just as easily be 6-0, or 5-1, or 4-2 as they are 3-3.
Alabama has won 8 straight games against Tennessee, and a lot of those wins for the Crimson Tide were not really very close.
The only close game in those 8 losses was a 12-10 win for the Tide in 2009 which was a season that Alabama won the national championship.
Last season, in 2014, Alabama jumped all over the Volunteers from the very beginning and jumped out to a big early lead.
But, something odd happened on the way to their 8th straight win over Tennessee. Starting Quarterback Nathan Peterman could do very little for the Volunteers and then they replaced him with Joshua Dobbs. The game took on a completely different feeling immediately and the Vols began to fight their way back.
They still lost 20 to 34 to the Crimson Tide, but a new star was born for the Volunteers in Joshua Dobbs and they were a completely different team after that game.
They were 3-5 after their loss to Alabama, but the Vols won 4 out of their last 5 games to finish up at 7-6 on the year and high hopes for the 2015 season.
On Saturday, October the 24th, the two teams will meet up for the 98th time.
This game will be in Tuscaloosa where Alabama can be hard to beat. This could be a great game with Tennessee stepping up to take on the challenge, or it could be another disappointment for the Volunteers as they go down for the ninth straight time.
On paper, the Alabama Crimson Tide is a huge favorite. The odds makers have established Alabama as a 15.5 point favorite.
But, good thing for all of us football fans, the games are not played on paper. Anything can happen and maybe the Tennessee Volunteers can make a game of the latest Third Saturday game even if it is being played on the 4th Saturday in October.
Tune in on the 4th Saturday of October for the 3rd Saturday of October football game. It could be a good one.