The Vols take on Western Kentucky Saturday at noon in the second game with new head coach Butch Jones. Every week this season we'll be taking a look back at a classic game in history.
This week in Vols history, we take you back to September 5th, 1998 when Tennessee began its journey to a championship against Syracuse.
In his first career start, quarterback Tee Martin struggled in the passing game completing just 9 of 26 attempts. The junior made up for it with his legs, rushing for 81 yards including a long run on third and 10 in the fourth quarter that kept a touchdown drive alive.
Tennessee kept future NFL star Donovan McNabb under pressure for most of the day, Jeff Coleman led the way with three sacks, Corey Terry recorded two and Al Wilson had a sack as well. But the Syracuse offense exploded for 20 points in the fourth quarter and held a two-point lead with less than three minutes left.
McNabb finished with 300 yards on 22-of-28 passing but was held to just 17 rushing yards. Jamal Lewis led Tennessee with 141 yards on the ground.
Tennessee's undefeated season almost ended before it started but a pass interference call on 4th down kept the Vols final drive alive.
"I don't think he was very surprised cause he knew if I woulda made that catch I could've made it something big so he would've rather took the pass interference than anything," said Cedric Wilson, the receiver who was interfered with on the play.
Jeff Hall booted a 27 yard field goal as time expired to give Tennessee its first win in a magical season