No matter how you slice it, Tennessee’s 2016 was a disappointment. This was a team many of us (myself included) thought would win the SEC East. Hell, they even beat Florida and Georgia. Conventional wisdom tells you the division should always go through one of those three schools. But injuries, embarrassing losses, and the best offensive player transferring midseason conspired to tank the Vols in 2016.
Then, Jones uttered the woeful words about his team:
Tennessee fans watching Butch's press conference pic.twitter.com/y78FG4wlJU— O&W Report (@OandWReport) November 21, 2016
“They’ve won the biggest championship, and that’s the championship of life.”
In a pre-bowl press conference, Jones extrapolated on the comment in probably the worst way possible.
Butch Jones on champions for life "I want to say 7 college football programs have that motto so when I said it it didn't resonate very well"— Rhiannon Potkey (@TennesseeBeat) December 26, 2016
Let’s dig a little deeper here. If seven other teams have the motto, then the Vols aren’t even really the champions of life after all. At best, they’re merely co-champions. We need a life championship series to sort all this out, perhaps a life playoff.
Either way, we now must add this to the list of championships that Tennessee has missed out on this season:
- The national championship.
- The conference championship.
- The SEC East championship.
- The Tennessee state championship.
- The life championship.
We gotta recall the rings now, too. It’s a shame because they looked good.
At least you beat Florida.