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Tennessee sophomores don't deserve citizenship
papers until they have survived an Alabama game.
General Robert Neyland

2002 Overall Record:  8-5
Conference Record:  5-3
 
Returning Starters:  Offense 8, Defense 4, Kicker/Punter 1

Next Game:  August 30 vs Fresno State @ Knoxville

Want a little info on Fresno State?

SEC East Out Of Conference Opponents:

2003 Forecast: 

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8-5 overall?  5-3 in Conference?  1 win against a bowl team?  6 overtimes to beat Arkansas?  Tennessee?  Run for cover, the IceMan cometh! 
 
2002 was not even that close.  They lost by a combined 120-33 vs Miami, Florida, Alabama, and Maryland.
 
The 2003 squad returns 8 starters on offense and 4 starters on defense.  Among the returning are QB Casey Clausen (2297 psg yds) and RB Cedric Houston (779 yds rushing).  OT Michael Munoz may be All-American caliber.  In addition, the Vols have moved defensive secondary phenom Mark Jones to a wideout position.  The offense should be great. 
 
Defensively, several players who expected to contribute, missed time during the spring due to injuries.  all are expected to be back.  DB Rashad Baker leads the secondary.
 
Phil Fulmer, like him or not, is a winner. 
 
Fresno State, Marshall, and Miami highlight the OOC slate.  In conference, the Vols will host Georgia and South Carolina.  UT must take road trips to Florida, Auburn, and Bama.
 
The Vols will compete for the SEC East crown, and are my pick to win it.
 
Prediction:  10-2 Overall.  7-1 SEC.  SEC runners-up.  BCS bowl bid.  Top 10 ranking.

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UT News:

CFN 2003 Tennessee Volunteers Preview

8-21 Fulmer: Tennessee no place to be individual

8-10 Volunteers on the up and up

8-10 Lesser-known Vols key to team's resurgence in '03

8-10 Vols come out throwing

8-9 Tackle Harrell's ankle broken

8-9 Fulmer: President flap shouldn't hurt team

8-8 Receiver Tinsley returns to sideline with injury

8-7 WRs must learn to talk the talk

8-7 Fulmer out to eliminate errors

8-6 Vols offensive line toughens up

8-6 Fulmer pushes Vols to limit

8-6 Vols no longer the hunted

8-5 Fulmer hopes to get team back on track

8-2 Ole Miss aide joins UT staff

8-1 Clausen fired up to get Vols back atop SEC

8-1 Vols need a few playmakers

7-30 Stewart not charged in rape case

7-30 Fulmer delays SEC appearance for wife's surgery

7-30 Some shine in weight room

7-27 Clausen, Vols searching for the big play

7-26 Fulmer to put team concept back in Vols

7-25 UT president worried about job security? `Not really'

7-25 Notre Dame, Memphis back on Vols 2005 schedule

7-24 BGA star commits to the Vols

7-24 Simon says knee stronger than ever

7-24 Vols hope sweat cleanses team

7-23 Blackburn gets new post with Vols

7-12 Vols will need young WRs to step up play

7-11 UT freshmen make it to class

7-9 Sears gets academic clearance

7-6 Brewer defection vexes UT recruiting

7-3 Four UT signees won't attend summer sessions

7-1 Top 10 stadiums: No. 3, Tennessee's Neyland Stadium

7-1 Benson named UT hoops assistant

6-29 Dickey's departure caps tenure that saw Vols become national power

6-25 FB Mayes dismissed after failing drug tests

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SEC Sports Smack note:  The Vols look to return to the top of the SEC East standings.  They are well coached, and laden with talent.  Coach Fulmer does a heck of a job recruiting.
 
Tennessee is a mainstay in the SEC elite, and will remain there for the foreseeable future.  The program is rock solid.
 
The grade scandal and Tee Martin episodes that have rocked Old Rocky Top are long gone now. 
 
As long as there is Alabama football, there will be scandals at UT.  But, it appears to be smooth sailing in the near future, despite every Private Investigator from the state of Alabama being holed up in a corner of Knoxville or Memphis.
 
There will be new challengers to the thone in the future, but 2003 will be the year the Vols reclaim top billing in the East.

Neyland Stadium (104,079)
National Championships:  1951, 1998
SEC Championships:  1938, 39, 40, 46, 51, 56, 67, 69, 85, 89, 90, 97, 98
Alltime Record:  726-300-53
Bowl Record:  23-20

2003 Tennessee Volunteer Football Schedule

Vol Message Boards:

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SEC Sports Smack is an independent website featuring Southeastern Conference sports news & opinions. This website is neither affiliated with, nor endorsed by the Southeastern Conference or any of its' athletic departments.  The opinions expressed on this site are not necessarily those of SEC Sports Smack or its operators.