Gameday Report: What You Need To Know Ahead Of Vols’ Battle with Alabama
Tennessee has a few key injuries that we need to report on ahead of the 9:00 kick-off. To start, we’ll discuss the status of Tennessee starting quarterback Brian Maurer, who suffered a concussion in the Volunteer’s 20-10 victory against the Mississippi State Bulldogs. Maurer was flipped over after attempting a quarterback scramble and slammed his head into the turf. Jeremy Pruitt announced that Maurer would be a game-time decision in his Monday morning press conference and has not offered us any new information since.
Locklear is probably not going to be an option for Tennessee tonight after suffering a concussion 2 weeks ago against the Georgia Bulldogs. Pruitt told the media, “he probably wouldn’t” play against Alabama on Monday and unless he recovered quicker than expected that is likely still accurate.
Another key injury the Vols are facing is defensive lineman Latrell Bumphus who was also injured in the Volunteers victory over MSU. Jeremy Pruitt has not offered us any information regarding Bumphus, therefore, his status for tonight is completely unknown. Tennessee is already very thin and inexperienced at the defensive-line so if Bumphus is unable to be a go, it would be a monumental blow.
Flowers is likely out for the remainder of the season following breaking his leg on his interception return against Mississippi State. Obviously he will not play tonight and there is no timetable for his return.
Jeremy Pruitt announced that Johnson would be available for tonight’s game for the first time since he started against the BYU Cougars. While the UT offensive-line has been very impressive without Johnson it will serve as a major boost to have him back in a game where the Vols must hold off Alabama’s pass-rush to protect whomever starts at quarterback.
While no rain is expected in the Tuscaloosa weather forecast, the game will be played in the low 60’s and high 50’s, so if you’re headed to Bryant-Denny for the game tonight bring a jacket. As for how this could affect the game, cold weather always favors a defense, but with Alabama’s elite offensive game it will not likely be shown in the final score.
Alabama is expected to crush the Volunteers by nearly 5 touchdowns tonight as they are a whopping 34.5 point favorites over Tennessee. While Illinois, who was also an underdog by over 30 points, proved that lines don’t always matter in their 24-23 upset victory over #6 Wisconsin it will be an extremely tough task for the Vols to have the same results against the best team in the nation.
You can watch Tennessee take on #1 Alabama at 9:00ET on ESPN, or come to our watch party at Tennessee Taphouse. We’ll be back with immediate reaction following the conclusion of tonight’s game against the Tide.
Luke A. Thomas
Luke was born in Murfreesboro, Tennessee and grew up with a passion for SEC Football.
His career in journalism started in 2016 when he covered his hometown MTSU Blue Raiders. He would later go on to cover the local Vanderbilt Commodores before he would begin covering the Volunteers. He wrote for SBNation, covering UT Athletics before joining Volunteer Roadshow in May of 2019. At Volunteer Roadshow he covers all things Tennessee, with a focus on UT Football and Basketball.