KNOXVILLE (WATE) — Tennessee put together its first complete game this season, blowing out Tennessee Tech 55-0 on Saturday at Neyland Stadium in the 93rd homecoming game.
The win also made the Vols bowl eligible for the third consecutive season, marking the first time Tennessee has done that three years in a row since the 2002-04 season under Phillip Fulmer.
Joshua Dobbs, who finished 12-13 for 183 yards and three touchdowns, led the way for the Vols before being replaced by Quinten Dormady toward the end of the second quarter. Dobbs completed his first 11 attempts in the game.
The senior signal caller put the Vols on the scoreboard three plays into the game after connecting with Josh Malone from 30 yards out to give Tennessee a 7-0 lead.
The Vols added to their lead on their next offensive possession, capping off another 3-play drive with a 43-yard touchdown pass from Dobbs to Malone.
Malone put together a strong outing, totaling five receptions for 112 yards and two scores.
John Kelly, who started at running back in place of the injured Alvin Kamara, gave the Vols a 21-0 lead with a 73-yard rush to the end zone. It was the longest rush by Vol since LaMarcus Coker’s 87-yard touchdown against Vanderbilt on Nov. 18, 2006.
Dobbs turned to Jauan Jennings in the second quarter, finding the sophomore receiver for a 3-yard touchdown pass. The score ended a 10-play drive to give the Vols a 28-0 lead.
Tennessee, who played in front of 98,343 fans, showcased some new faces to the crowd in the second quarter.
Freshman running back Carlin Fils-aime rushed for his first career touchdown on a 2-yard carry before an Aaron Medley 19-yard field goal gave the Vols a 38-0 lead at halftime.
Fils-aime opened the scoring up in the second half with a 1-yard touchdown run to give Tennessee at 45-0 advantage.
Medley tacked on another field goal, this time from 42 yards to make the score 48-0 early in the fourth quarter.
Saturday marked the sixth meeting between the Vols and Tennessee Tech, with Tennessee now holding a 6-0 record all-time against the Golden Eagles. The two had not played each other since 1951.
The Vols now turn to Kentucky, who they’ll host next Saturday. After Arkansas upset Florida on Saturday in Fayetteville, the Vols chances of an SEC East title are brighter.
If Florida loses either to South Carolina or LSU and Tennessee wins out, the Vols will own the East crown.