Just as cynics were shoveling dirt on the Vols' grave last fall, they traveled to Athens and beat the Bulldogs 19-14.
How's that for an omen?
Naturally, Tennessee's chances of bouncing back from a Game 2 loss with a Game 3 victory this fall would be better if the opposition weren't a powerful team like LSU. But at least one Vol thinks playing a quality opponent is a plus; it forces the Vols to focus on the present, rather than the past.
"Coming off a loss, having to get yourself mentally ready to play another good team … that's good for your system," senior tailback Gerald Riggs says. "You're able to get that (Florida) loss behind you, focus on the next game and see the big picture."
The big picture: If Tennessee loses at LSU, it drops to 0-2 in SEC play and says goodbye to any hopes of winning the league championship.
But that's the same situation the Vols faced when they headed to Georgia following last year's Auburn loss. They rose to the occasion then. Can they do so again? The answer arrives at 7:30 Eastern Time Monday night.