On a night when Bowling Green did most of its offensive traveling in the air, Tennessee decided to match their opponent on the ground.
The Vols racked up 399 rushing yards behind their new duo of Jalen Hurd and Alvin Kamara, stamping the new ground attack with six touchdowns and an emphatic exclamation point on a two-headed monster that is already flashing its unbelievable potential.Kamara started off his Tennessee career with a flash of lightning, both literally in the weather delay that plagued the game for an hour and metaphorically with 144 yards and two touchdowns. The junior college transfer complemented returning starter Hurd in a way that decidedly helped Tennessee put the game away when Bowling Green threatened to deflate the air from the Vols through the air. “They feed off of each other and the great thing about that is, they’re selfless,” head coach Butch Jones said. “When one scores, we all score. You can see the excitement in them and in their body language.” Hurd struck first, breaking the seal with a 6-yard score in the first quarter. The sophomore ended the day with 123 yards and three touchdowns on 23 carries. And he didn't mind sharing the load. When Kamara entered the end zone on a 56-yard scamper in the third quarter to essentially ice the game, his partner in crime was the first person in the end zone to congratulate him. "We pride ourself on being the most unselfish group," Hurd said. "We don't play like if he gets a touchdown, we get mad. This is a family. Our running backs are a family. Whenever a teammate scores a touchdown, I'm going to be happy for him." The duo helped Tennessee score quickly and efficiently. On five Vol drives, the offense was able to punch the ball in the end zone in two minutes or less — a tribute to the powerful run game that bruised Bowling Green for nearly 400 yards. "We've been talking about this since spring, getting out there, getting out there finally Sept. 5," Kamara said. "That's what we've been talking about, to finally get on the field and see what that O-line can do and see what both of us can do. It was fun." The offensive line that posed plenty of question marks held up to its end of the bargain for much of the night, sometimes opening gaping holes for its running backs to slide through. Starting left tackle Kyler Kerbyson "We really take pride in running the ball as an offensive line," Kerbyson said. "Having that many rushing yards in a game is awesome ... I'm really happy."