(WBIR- Knoxville) The tailgates may be packed up, Neyland Stadium may be empty, and UT's campus may be quiet, but the excitement of the Vols' victory can be seen on the faces of every fan in the city.
When fans poured out of Neyland Stadium on Sunday night, excitement filled the air. The Vol's defeated Utah State 38-7 and fans said something felt different this time around.
"They couldn't have started any better really," said John Mahoney, Knoxville resident. "They played well, they did great. We'll wait and see. It's going to be a long season."
While that may be true, some students said expectations are high.
"I'm not on the fence anymore. I'm very excited," said Ethan Moss, UT student. "I want a bowl season. I think one of the biggest things is just a bunch of young talent and a bunch of young players that just look pretty promising."
For the first time since 2007, the Vols' home opener was completely sold out. Students said Butch Jones may have something to do with it.
"He lets the fans get really into it," Moss said. "He is really building an excellent program. I think everyone is very excited and that's the reason for 102,000."
"He is pushing the right buttons to get the people back involved," he said. "It's been a long suffering 5 or 6 years."
For some fans, the season is so promising they are planning to watch the Vols live as much as possible.
"We're leaving for Oklahoma this coming Friday," Mahoney explained. "We will be driving to see the Tennessee, Oklahoma game in two weeks."
Some fans want to see a season over .500, some want to go to a bowl game, and for others?
"We haven't beaten Florida since I was in 4th grade," Moss laughed. "It was elementary school. I need to beat the Gators before I leave here. It's going to happen this year too."
The Vols will play host to Arkansas State this Saturday at 12:00. At this point, tickets are still available.