Vols continue late struggles against top teams

JOE BIDDLE: Sunday Notes: Nov. 1, 2014 (Image 1)
JOE BIDDLE: Sunday Notes: Nov. 1, 2014 (Image 1)

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – After continually falling apart in the second half of Southeastern Conference games last year, Tennessee is emphasizing the importance of performing better down the stretch against top teams.

Early evidence suggests that issue remains a concern.

Instead of merely staying close until halftime last week against Florida, the Vols led late in the third quarter. But their collapse in the final 18 ½ minutes of a 37-20 loss revealed some bad habits they must kick to avoid a third straight losing season.

Tennessee (2-1) will try to correct those flaws Saturday against Akron (1-2) before entering a stretch that could define its season. After the Akron game, the Vols face four consecutive ranked conference foes: No. 5 Georgia, No. 23 Mississippi State, No. 1 Alabama and No. 7 South Carolina.

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