Tennessee put a beating on LSU in Death Valley on Saturday, winning 40-13 in a game that was never competitive.
The Volunteers are now 5-0 on the season. They also jumped to No. 6 in this week’s AP Top 25 ahead of a huge game on Saturday with No. 3 Alabama.
During their Week 6 Recap podcast Sunday, ESPN analysts Paul Finebaum and Matt Barrie took some time to talk about the job that Tennessee coach Josh Heupel is doing in his 2nd season in Knoxville.
“Why aren’t we giving Josh Heupel more credit for what he’s done?” Barry asked. “Let me refresh everybody’s memory. Laughed at, booed at, get out of here before he was hired. They didn’t think the UCF coach was qualified enough to be the coach at Tennessee. Yet in year two … he has Tennessee in the top 10 and ready to go toe-to-toe with big, bad Alabama.”
Finebaum then chimed in with some thoughts about not only Heupel but his past relationship with Oklahoma.
“Most people know Josh Heupel was a Heisman runner-up at Oklahoma,” Finebaum said. “He led the Sooners to a national championship. He was the offensive play caller there, and it ended badly, really badly. I don’t know if he’s been back since he left.
“I just wonder out loud, which is dangerous sometimes on this podcast, what some of the big, fat-cat Oklahoma Sooners think right now. Because I think they’re stuck with Brent Venables. This guy doesn’t look like he’s ready for prime time and Heupel does.”
Finebaum also hinted that he thinks the Heupel-Oklahoma story might not be over just yet.
“In my mind, you have to think some Oklahoma boosters are thinking, ‘Man, we have to figure this out somehow down the road’ because Brent Venables doesn’t look like he’s long for the job and Josh Heupel has emerged as one of the best coaches in America.” Finebaum said.
You can see the entire segment about Heupel in the video below:
Tennessee online sports betting officially launched on November 1, 2020, and many of the largest sportsbooks are live and operating in the volunteer state. Tennessee is only one of a handful of SEC football states with legalized sports betting.