"Obviously, I'm the offensive coordinator … head coach of the offense, so I have to take my share of it," Randy Sanders said this week. "Each of us, as coaches, have to take responsibility for what happens at our position.
"But there's also a whole of it that lies with the individual. Jumping off-sides, fumbling, crossing the line of scrimmage before throwing the ball away instead of running with it … those are things you start coaching and stressing from eighth grade till now."
Like Sanders, head coach Phillip Fulmer accepts some accountability for the Vols' pathetic offensive production. And, like Sanders, he says there's plenty of blame to go around.
"Offensively, we've obviously been our own worst enemy," he said. "The bad thing is we haven't reached our potential. The good thing is, there's potential still to be reached.
"When you play very good teams and you have turnovers, dropped passes and penalties, it's usually very difficult to win. Everybody's accountable for that – starting with me, the coaches and the players."
The Vols make a lot of fundamental mistakes – false starts, dropped passes, fumbles near the goal line, etc. Yet, Sanders says UT's coaches go over the fundamentals in practice every day.
"We've coached it hard and stressed it hard," he said. "But sometimes the harder you try not to make a mistake the easier it is to make one."
Still, he says he isn't blaming the players. He admits the coaches are equally accountable for this season's offensive impotence.
"I don't know why it's happening," he said. "I think the responsibility lies with everyone. It's just happened, and I don't have a good answer for it."