The Vols are 3-0 after Saturday's 28-19 win over Ohio, but an unconvincing 3-0.
Ball security issues that loomed large in Week 1 and seemingly went dormant in Week 2 came up again Saturday. Tennessee's discipline at the line of scrimmage and receiving game also came under question.
Butch Jones addressed the Vols' sloppy play directly: "That's not the way we play football around here."
They fumbled five times but were fortunate to recover all five. The team committed nine penalties for 94 yards.
"I'm not happy with it," Jones said. "Penalties are inexcusable, the balls on the ground are inexcusable, that's not how we're going to play football around here and our players understand that."
Jones said the team has practiced better than it has performed on the field. However, Team 120's leader said the struggles the Vols are having now won't fly when they hit the rough patch of their schedule.
The Vols play No. 23 Florida, No. 16 Georgia, No. 17 Texas A&M, and No. 1 Alabama respectively over the next month.
"I'm pulling my hair out as we move into conference play," Jones said. "We can't do that or we don't have a chance. We got to clean those things up in a hurry and that falls on my shoulders, and I'm going to make sure it's pointed out and we get better at it, but we have to take tremendous strides in doing that."