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Tennessee Volunteers vs. Missouri Tigers Preview: What Upset Possibility?

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You can make too much out of Mizzou's disappointing loss to South Carolina last week, and anyone looking for the Tigers to lose this game is doing just that

Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Tennessee Volunteers vs. Missouri Tigers, 7 p.m. ET, ESPN

There's really not much of a reason to give this game a second thought. Yes, Missouri is coming off of a crushing loss to South Carolina that could eventually cost the other other Tigers the SEC East title. And yes, Tennessee defeated that same South Carolina team in one of the surprise games of the year just a week earlier.

But the 45-10 obliteration of Tennessee by Alabama wiped out the idea of a Tennessee "resurgence" that began in the second half of the Georgia game. That's not to criticize the Vols or what Butch Jones has done there; it was always going to be a multiseason rebuilding job for Jones, and even a one-off upset against South Carolina shows progress. Tennessee, though, is still fundamentally the team that eked out a win against South Alabama and got destroyed by Oregon. The Volunteers might be better than they were then, but there's a long way between that and "defeating two SEC East contenders in the same season."

And none of the other factors that you look for in an upset are there. Missouri is at home. The next game on the schedule for the Tigers is a trip to Kentucky, so there's no danger of looking ahead. Aside from the heartbreaking fashion of last week's loss, there's no reason not to trust the numbers. And the numbers say the Missouri offense is just too good for Tennessee to stop. After a slow start, the Tigers roll.

Missouri 42, Tennessee 28