Vols dominate their border rivals beating Kentucky, 44-6

Vols improve to 8-0 on the season, 4-0 in SEC play heading down to Athens next week
Tennessee cruised at home against Kentucky.
Tennessee cruised at home against Kentucky.(Tennessee Athletics)
Published: Oct. 29, 2022 at 11:49 AM CDT|Updated: Oct. 29, 2022 at 10:36 PM CDT
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Head Coach Josh Heupel Looking Ahead

Josh Heupel speaks after beating Kentucky during one of the most important stretches in Tennessee football history! 🍊🏈

Posted by WVLT on Saturday, October 29, 2022

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - The Vols and TCU Horned Frogs are the only FBS teams with four or more wins this season over AP Top-25 opponents.

The No.3 Vols will try and make it five wins when they square off against No. 19 Kentucky inside Neyland Stadium Saturday night.

UT will be rocking its “Dark Mode” uniforms for the game, which will feature a black helmet for the first time in program history.

The matchup will pit the SEC’s top-scoring offense and second-ranked scoring defense against one another.

Tennessee enters the game having scored 30 or more points in 10 straight games, the longest active streak in the SEC, while Kentucky hasn’t allowed more than 24 points in 11 consecutive games, the longest active streak in the FBS.

The last team to score more than that on the Wildcats was Tennessee in a 45-42 thriller last season up in Lexington.

The meeting on Saturday between the Vols and Wildcats will be the 118th with Tennessee leading the series 82-26-9.

Tennessee has played and beaten Kentucky more than any other opponent in program history. The Big Orange is 34-3 against the Cats since 1985, but UK has come away victorious in two of the previous five meetings, including the last time the two programs faced off inside Neyland Stadium in 2020.

Dynamic senior signal caller Will Levis leads the Wildcats’ offense. His combination of athleticism, arm strength and improved accuracy has him among the top NFL draft prospects at the quarterback position this year.

In six games played, Levis is completing nearly 70 percent of his passes for 1,635 yards, 13 touchdowns and five interceptions.

To complement the passing attack, the Wildcats boast one of the SEC’s top running backs in senior Chris Rodriguez Jr. After missing the first four games of the season, Rodriguez has provided a jolt to Kentucky’s ground game with 72 carries for 395 yards (5.5 avg) and three scores, averaging 131.7 yards per contest over the Cats’ last three games.

ESPN will have the broadcast beginning at 7 p.m. with an incredible flyover just before kickoff!


Only Vols officially ruled out for tonight’s game is freshman QB Tayven Jackson and LB Kwauze Garland. Jaylen McCollough and Cedric Tillman officially “available.”

Just 5 plays in 75 yards! Hendon Hooker hits Cedric Tillman twice and Jalin Hyatt twice, the 2nd to #11 covers 55 yards for a touchdown. Chase McGrath connects on the extra point and Tennessee takes a 7-0 lead in this annual border battle.

Kentucky, which went 3 and out on its first possession made some noise on its second driving down the field 71 yards in 9-plays with hard nosed RB Chris Rodriguez rushing it in from 3-yards out. PAT is blocked as Vols maintain a one point lead at 7-6.


Vols cap a 15 play, 75 yard drive that started in the 1st quarter and ended on the first play of the 2nd quarter with a two yard Princeton Fant touchdown run. A holding penalty on the kick pushed UT back and McGrath would miss the longer PAT making the score 13-6 Vols with 14:56 remaining in the first half.

Jaylen Wright runs in from 1-yd out for another Tennessee touchdown. Drive covers 77 yards in 8-plays in 2:42 as the Vols increase their lead to 20-6. Hendon Hooker 10-11 for 113 yards and 1-TD tVols head into the break thanks to a 31-yd TD pass from Hooker to Hyatt. Jalin’s 2nd of the game and 14th of the season.

Vols head into the break with a 21 point lead thanks to a 31-yd TD pass from Hooker to Hyatt. Jalin’s 2nd of the game and 14th of the season! #3 Tennessee leads #19 KY, 27-6 at the half. Vols have 262 total yards, 148-pass and 114-rush. Hooker now 12-14 with 2-TD’s


Vols first drive of the 3rd quarter results in a Chase McGrath field goal. Then the Vols are back in business thanks to a a Brandon Turnage interception of a Will Levis pass. That’s sets up UT with great field position and would result in no points as Chase McGrath’s 37 yard FG attempt doinks off the left upright. Vols maintain a 30-6 lead over the Wildcats.

The much critiqued Tennessee secondary has come up big tonight! Now 3 interceptions. Doneiko Slaughter, who tipped the first pick of Will Levis into Juwan Mitchell’s hands, gets one himself giving the ball right back to Hendon Hooker and company!

Tennessee now with 163 rushing yards. The last 8 came courtesy of #5. Hendon Hooker rushes into the checkerboards much to the delight of the frenzied dark mode crowd at Neyland! Vols up big in this Border Battle now leading KY 37-6 with 3:58 remaining in the 3rd quarter.

Some say it feels like ‘98. Sure would be nice to end up with this!


Jalin Hyatt 5 rec-138 yards and 2-TD’s (14 for the season)

Hendon Hooker 19-25, 245 yards and 3-TD’s (latest to Jabari Small) and 1-rushing TD

Vols have held cats to 90 yards passing and 1-11 on third down and lead the Cats 44-6

Vols dominate their rivals 44-6!

Tennessee Holds KY to 98 yards passing and 205 total yards.

Vols roll into Athens next week (WVLT) at 8-0 and 4-0 in SEC play!