10 best events of UT football 2003

Below is my list of the 10 best events of UT football 2003. Let me know what you think

1. Mark Jones' hit on Brock Berlin, forcing an errant pass that Gibril Wilson intercepted in the final minutes of the Miami game. That play saved Tennessee's 10-6 upset and saved Tennessee's season, as well.

2. The near-miraculous Hail Mary pass from Casey Clausen to James Banks (by way of Mark Jones) that gave Tennessee a dramatic 50-yard touchdown and a 7-3 lead on the last play of the first half vs. Florida, spurring the Vols to a 24-10 victory.

3. Clausen's 28-yard completion to C.J. Fayton on fourth-and-19 in double-overtime that enabled Tennessee to rally for a stirring 51-43 five-OT win at Alabama. After back-to-back losses to Auburn and Georgia, this game stopped the Vols' downward spiral and ignited a six-game winning streak.

4. Clausen staying healthy for 12 games, as opposed to his injury-plagued 2002 season. The Vol offense was sluggish WITH him; it would've been lost WITHOUT him.

5. Mark Jones' versatility. He contributed mightily as a receiver (31 catches for 490 yards), as a safety (17 tackles, two interceptions, three pass breakups) and as a punt return man (15.7-yard average that ranks No. 3 nationally).

6. The steady improvement of Tennessee's youthful defensive tackles. Atrocious against Auburn, they were reasonably solid by November.

7. Gibril Wilson's emergence as a star-quality strong safety, coupled with Jason Allen's development into a top-notch cornerback.

8. The combination of Nos. 6 and 7 tightening up UT's defense to the point that it allowed just four touchdowns over the final five games -- two of these coming against Vol scrubs in the final minutes of the Mississippi State blowout.

9. The brilliant work of Dustin Colquitt, whose ability to boot the ball long and high while also placing it near the sidelines enabled Tennessee to post a superb NET punting average of 40 yards.

10. The terrific comeback by redshirt freshman kicker James Wilhoit. After making just five of his first 10 field goal tries, he nailed 12 of his final 13.


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