No. 3 Tennessee takes on No. 19 Kentucky to set up massive clash against No. 1 Georgia – Yahoo Sports

No. 3 Tennessee takes on No. 19 Kentucky to set up massive clash against No. 1 Georgia - Yahoo Sports

The No. 3 Volunteers easily beat No. 19 Kentucky 44-6 on Saturday night to set up a matchup of 8-0 teams in a week after No. 1 Georgia defeated Florida 42-20 in Jacksonville.

Kentucky had trouble covering Tennessee wide receiver Jalin Hyatt from the start of the game. He was wide open and caught a 55-yard TD pass on the first drive of the game and caught another TD with no Kentucky defender near him just before halftime to give the Vols a 27-6 lead at the break.

Hyatt’s second TD came after Kentucky was forced to punt with 37 seconds left. The punt was nearly blocked and traveled just 19 yards to set Tennessee up at the Kentucky 35 with just over half a minute left.

Tennessee then needed just two plays to take a three-point lead into the locker room. After Kentucky cut Tennessee’s early lead to a point at 7-6, the Vols went on a 15-play drive and an 8-play drive to build what turned out to be an insurmountable lead even before Hyatt’s second score.

The game was a rare matchup of a potential Heisman finalist QB in Tennessee’s Hendon Hooker and a QB being mentioned as a potential top-10 NFL draft pick in Will Levis. The potential Heisman finalist had the better game by far. Hooker threw for three TDs and ran for another and didn’t turn the ball over.

Levis didn’t get much help from his receivers and threw three interceptions when Kentucky’s downfield passing game was nonexistent. Levis completed 16-of-27 passing for a paltry 98 yards. Kentucky had 205 yards in 63 plays while Tennessee had 422 yards in 65 plays.

Georgia, meanwhile, didn’t break too much of a sweat with Florida either. While the Gators got to within eight points in the third quarter, Georgia easily pulled away after that and made the final margin more representative of how the game played out. Dijon Edwards and Kenny McIntosh each rushed for two TDs and Brock Bowers had one ridiculous 73-yard TD catch on a pass that was deflected multiple times.

The Bulldogs will likely remain at No. 1 in Sunday’s AP Top 25 and Tennessee will likely remain at No. 3 as well after No. 2 Ohio State’s big win over Penn State. But we won’t be surprised if the rankings are flipped on Tuesday in the first edition of the College Football Playoff committee’s rankings. With wins over three teams likely to be in that first CFP top 25, Tennessee has a strong claim to the No. 1 spot based on how the committee tends to judge teams, especially in early November.

Could either team claim to be No. 1 before the biggest game at Sanford Stadium since Notre Dame’s visit in 2019? We’ll find out Tuesday night.

KNOXVILLE, TENNESSEE - OCTOBER 29: Jaylen Wright #20 of the Tennessee Volunteers blocks Tyrell Ajian #6 of the Kentucky Wildcats in the second quarter of the game at Neyland Stadium on October 29, 2022 in Knoxville, Tennessee.  (Photo by Eakin Howard/Getty Images)

Tennessee easily defeated Kentucky to move to 8-0 and set up a huge game against Georgia. (Photo by Eakin Howard/Getty Images)

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