I Bleed Orange

USC might be the best of all time in college football. UCLA might be the best of all time in college basketball. Arkansas might be the best of all time in track and field. College baseball has had several great teams. But no matter the sport, in college sports, its all about the Tennessee Volunteers.

Football season is over. Baseball is not here yet. It’s the middle of Winter. That means one thing. Its time for Bruce Pearl, the coach of the men’s basketball team at Tennessee, to bust out the orange suit jacket. Yesterday was my birthday. I was away from the computer to check scores or the latest sports news. But I did find out something this morning. On my birthday, January 18th of 2008, the Tennessee men’s college basketball team is number in the RPI (Ratings Percentage Index).

Now, how long can we hang there? How long will it take for someone to beat the Vols or to take over the number one spot with a quality win? That’s the excitement of sports. Thursday night, Tennessee wiped the floor with Skip Bayless’ alma mater, Vanderbilt. Saturday, we get a chance to avenge a loss to Ohio State. (Ohio State knocked Tennessee out of the NCAA tournament last year in San Antonio.) Last year, Ohio State beat Tennessee in two games. But they only won by a combined total of 3 points. This year, they are without their 19 year-old man, Greg Oden.

Many college basketball experts feel that this is a down year for the SEC. Florida isn’t playing at the same level that they have over the last few years. Kentucky is still getting accustomed to new coach Billy Gillispie’s coaching style. LSU is Big Baby-less. Arkansas no longer has 40 minutes of “heck.” Mississippi State’s Hansborough isn’t carrying his team like his brother is at North Carolina. South Carolina isn’t playing their relentless basketball like they once did.  Auburn and Alabama have yet to make any kind of splash on the scene this year. Ole Miss is playing above anyone’s expectations and will give Tennessee a run for their money at the SEC tournament. Vandy is playing well, but have lost two games in a row (at Kentucky and at Tennessee.)

Tennessee still has a big clash with the Memphis Tigers in February in Memphis. That may be the biggest game of the second half of the season. So, the Tennessee women’s basketball team is ranked number two in the country and playing solid ball behind Shelden William’s girlfriend, Candace Parker. The men’s team is playing some sweet high-pressure basketball, even though their All-American, Chris Lofton, isn’t hitting on all cylinders.

By the way, for my birthday, my wife got me an autographed picture of Jason Witten from when he still played tight end at Tennessee. (I know, I’m a bragger.) My Tennessee office is starting to come together. Thanks, babe.


2 Responses to “I Bleed Orange”

  1. Gooooo Vols!!!

  2. When I saw the title “I Bleed Orange,” I knew you had to be a Vols fan. We are new to Tennesse, from Ohio, but there is no doubt that here, especially in the Knoxville area, the Vols rule.

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