Vols look to bounce back, end streak against Gators

The Tennessee Volunteers are heading down to Gainesville to take on the Florida Gators Saturday.

The Vols have not beaten their divisional rivals in the last eight tries, and they have not won in Gainesville since 2003.
Both teams will come in to the game coming off a loss, as Tennessee got thrashed at Oregon 59-14 last week, and Florida, who is coming off a bye, was upset by Miami two weeks ago.
So far, neither offense has looked very effective. Vol quarterback Justin Worley was woefully inept against the Ducks, and he may not even start in The Swamp. Gator quarterback Jeff Driskel, along with the rest of the Florida offense, has been turnover-prone.
Both teams will probably try to lean on the run, due to the deficiencies in the passing game. In the last 23 meetings between the Gators and Vols, the team with the most rushing yards won 22 of those games. Florida has outgained Tennessee on the ground by an average of over 126 yards per game during the eight game streak, including a colossal 253 yard difference last season.
Florida has a clear advantage defensively, allowing only 208.5 yards per game. Tennessee, on the other hand, gave up more than 600 yards of offense and nearly 60 points last week. However, the Gator offense is a far cry from what the Vols faced in Autzen Stadium. The mistake-prone Gators could play into Tennessee’s hands, as the Vols have forced nine turnovers and have only committed four penalties.

The key for the Gators will be to limit mistakes and make Tennessee earn everything they get. The Vols need to take advantage of any breaks they are given and force Driskel to make plays with his arm, rather than his feet.
Tennessee and Florida will square off at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium on Sept. 21 at 3:30 p.m. The game will be televised on CBS.

Annual Tennessee vs. Florida blood drive still too close to call

As Butch Jones and Will Muschamp were respectively preparing this week for the always-anticipated rivalry game, students and staff on each campus were competing in the annual Tennessee vs. Florida blood drive. For over twelve years now, Knoxville’s MEDIC Regional Blood Center has set up shop on campus during Tennessee-Florida week to take blood donations from UT staff, students, and faculty in a constructive competition against Florida’s simultaneous blood drive in Gainesville.

MEDIC's donation station in the University Center.
MEDIC’s donation station in the University Center. Source: Harrison Alexander.

From 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. – Monday thru Friday – MEDIC Blood Center had blood donation areas set up in the University Center and the Medic Clinic on Western Avenue. Blood donation is vitally important to medical centers and hospitals because there it’s always a commodity in demand, and if you can’t beat Florida on the field, you might as well beat them in a blood drive.

The blood draw station set up by Starbucks had a steady flow of participants, and on the final day of donations Mike Prowl of MEDIC said it looks to stay busy. “I’d say we get at least 100 heads a day here,” said Prowl, adding that the process in its entirety takes “about 30 to 40 minutes.” Aside from all the good that the blood donations are doing for current and future medical patients, Tennessee holds the lead over Florida. MEDIC Regional Blood Center announced on its Facebook page Thursday night that the tally was 966-914 in favor of UT, but Prowl was able to provide an update. “When I checked [Friday] morning, [Florida] had 33 less than us; we had around 986,” meaning the approximate tally on Friday morning was 986-953.

Source: MEDIC Regional Blood Center's Facebook page.
Source: MEDIC Regional Blood Center’s Facebook page.

To offer further incentive, MEDIC gave each student donator a bundle of free stuff. Students get a free “Brick by Brick” shirt, coupon for a free frosty at Wendy’s, and a coupon for free cheese pizza from Snappy Tomato.

Prowl has worked the annual UT vs. UF blood drive on campus each September for over 12 years now, but he also talked about the annual UT vs. UK blood drive in November. “It used to only be Kentucky week, and they’ve been doing [the blood drive] on Kentucky week for around 24 years,” – this November will be the 26th annual UT vs. UK blood drive.

Both schools are on pace to donate a combined 2,000 pints of blood: that’s the equivalent of 237 empty 2-liter bottles all being filled up. Both universities are providing a great service to their communities, and adding a competitive spirit makes for a stronger turnout.

Edited by: Zach Dennis

UT student offers cheaper hammock option

Alex Adams, founder of Xada, sits at his booth on Pedestrian Walkway.
Alex Adams, founder of Xada, sits at his booth on Pedestrian Walkway.

There aren’t many college students who can say that they are running their own business, but that is just the case for senior Alex Adams, who runs a company specializing in portable hammocks.

A popular college accessory, Adams’ product is cheaper than most commercial brands. He wraps up the entire hammock into one price and bag rather than competitors who charge for the hammock, ropes, and a bag for both.

Adams came up with the idea for the product during his freshmen year. “I started renting hammocks from Morrill’s front desk, and it got to the point that they were all rented out,” said Adams. “I wanted to purchase my own, but I didn’t want to pay $65 for the hammock alone.”

Adams prides his products on not stretching down which is a common issue with the commercial brands. “It works on the same idea as a Chinese figure trap,” said Adams.

His goal was to make it more affordable for college students who don’t have $100 to spend on a hammock. A Xada hammock is not only cheaper but is also softer and has a more accessible and user friendly rope system. “Most people will be like ‘oh that it is a $100 hammock’ and will think about it,” said Adams.

“It’s all in one bag, you don’t have to have more than one hammock bag,” said Adams. “It makes it a little easier to keep up with.”

Adams has done well selling the hammocks and has even made a sale in Norway. Adams hopes to continue working on hammocks after college and add a few more products to the line.

If you are interested in purchasing a hammock go to xadagear.com.




Edited by Maggie Jones

Job Fair educates on proper interview skills

Vols always help Vols, and that does not change after you graduate. Katie Gillman, a UT graduate who has been a recruiter from Enterprise holdings for 9 years, held a workshop designed to teach students how to interact with employees in a career fair setting on Thursday in preparation for the upcoming job fair next week.

Gillman covered how to dress, how to speak, what to bring, and how to separate yourself from the competition by following up with employers, increasing face to face time, and learning how to sell yourself as an asset to a company.

Arguably the most important thing you can do to set yourself apart is to have a good “elevator speech.” This in essence means your initial introduction to a possible employer which should include your name, major, year of graduation, and why you are interested in this company. Wes McNeillie, a junior majoring in Business Finance, is attending the job fair next week and found out he had something to work on. “I didn’t know about the ‘elevator speech,’ that’s new to me. I also didn’t know speaking firmly made such an impression on them.” In fact according to Katie Gillman, that first impression is everything. “I look at their handshake” she said, “I look at how firm it is and how they speak to me.” You truly could employ yourself in the minds of the recruiters depending on how well your introduction is.

Juniors and Seniors will be looking to blow the recruiters away this week at the fair and hopefully be on their way to a good full-time career. Katie Gillman provided all the students present with great tips on how to be successful in the upcoming interviews they will have with recruiters and hopefully the companies are impressed with what the University of Tennessee has to offer to today’s job market.


Edited by: Zach Dennis

Knoxville Film Festival to premiere at Regal Downtown West


Knoxville’s first film festival will begin on Thursday Sept. 19 and go through Sunday Sept. 22.

The films will be split into 20 different blocks as well as an opening film on Thursday night.  Tickets can be purchased for each block individually or a festival pass can be bought for $75 which grants access to every film.

There will also be a student film competition that viewers can purchase tickets to see. The judges range from a Scripps Networks director to a film studies professor from the University.

In 2004, Keith McDaniel hosted the first Secret City Film Festival, which grew in size and popularity over the next eight years until McDaniel decided to move the event to Knoxville where he partnered with Regal Entertainment Group.

The festival film schedule is listed below:

Thursday, September 19th:

Short Term 12.

Friday, September 20th:

The Things My Father Never Taught me

Inner Child


Trust, Greed, Bullets & Bourbon

Nuts N Bolts


Fragile Things

The Star

Alex Dreaming

On The Train

Fear and Loathing in Apartment B

Mama Needs a Ride

The One Who Loves You


The Race That Eats its Young.

Shoot The Moon

Red River Moon

The Children Next Door

Where’s The Fair?



Good People Go To Hell, Saved People Go To Heaven

Saturday, September 21st:



Where We Started

Jujitsu-ing Reality

Simple As That

Character Face: A Clown Fantasy

Granny’s Got Game

State Debate

Dreams of the Wayward

Pui Chan: Kung Fu Pioneer

Mile High Pie

The Kid

CowJews and Indians

7-Day Shootout Filmmaking Competition Film Screenings.

Sunday, September 22nd:

Senior Drivers

Madison Harris

The Roosters-Series 1

Noah’s Arc: The Rebirth of a Jazz Singer

The Possum Drop

Losing Our Sons

The Ruins


45 RPM

Battle Cry of Freedom Student Filmmaking Competition Film Screenings

Light Me Up

23 Blast

For more information on the Knoxville Film Festival visit their website at http://www.knoxvillefilmfestival.com

Edited by Jessica Carr

U.S. News ranks University of Tennessee 47th among all public universities

Neyland Stadium overlooks the 47th ranked campus nationally.

The U.S. News and World Report’s 2014 rankings of national and public universities has officially been released and the University of Tennessee was ranked 101st among all national universities- the same result as previous rankings. UT was also ranked 47th among all public universities, which is down one spot from previous rankings.

In addition to the university’s results as a whole- the undergraduate business program was ranked 27th among all public universities, and 47th nationally. The undergraduate engineering program was ranked 37th among all public universities, and 65th nationally.

The rankings are determined from a variety of several factors. Some of the factors that UT showed improvement on this year included a higher six-year graduation rate, more classes with less than 20 students, faculty resources, alumni giving, and a better assessment from high school counselors. The specific key to success in the rankings is a higher graduation rate. Assistant Director of Media Relations, Amy Blakely, provided some insights on the progression that is being made towards this goal. “Improving our graduation rate is important for students and the university; it is a big part of our Top 25 journey. We’ve made significant gains over the past few years- our six-year graduation rate is now 66 percent, up from 60 percent three years ago- and we’re working hard to continue that improvement.”

“This fall, we implemented our new ‘Take 15, Graduate in 4’ tuition model for all full-time freshman and transfer students. It requires students to pay for fifteen hours regardless of how many hours they take, because you must take fifteen hours per semester if you are going to graduate in four years,” said Blakely. In addition to this plan she shared that, “We’ve also hired additional instructors for high-demand courses to ease bottlenecks, and we’ve implemented uTrack, a schedule monitoring system that will help students stay on track to an on-time graduation.”

As we all know, the goal for UT is to become a top 25 public research university. UT has created a three part vision that assists in striving towards this standard of excellence- value creation, original ideas, and leadership. With visions such as these being demonstrated- we are most certainly well on our way to achieving our goal.

Edited by Zach Dennis