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Trailing 28-13 with less than eight minutes to go in regulation, Tennessee made the decision to go for a touchdown near the Alabama goal line on fourth down. Guarantano took the snap and tried to go up and over the line of scrimmage.
That decision worked out poorly as Guarantano fumbled before he got close to the goal line. The ball bounced into the end zone and Alabama’s Trevon Diggs picked it up and returned it 100 yards for a three-touchdown lead for the Crimson Tide. Alabama won 35-13.
As Guarantano returned to the sideline he was met by an extremely upset Pruitt, who briefly grabbed Guarantano’s facemask in his display of anger. Not a good idea.
What was Pruitt so upset about? Well, the play might not have been a sneak. Left guard Trey Smith pulled to the outside on the play and left the gap open like it was for a run play to the outside of the tackles. Did Guarantano make the decision to sneak it himself?
Tennessee kept the game relatively close during the second half until the game-changing sneak after Alabama QB Tua Tagovailoa’s second-quarter ankle injury.
It has been a frustrating season for Tennessee and Pruitt ever since a season-opening loss to Georgia State. While the Vols beat Mississippi State in Week 7, Tennessee also lost a heartbreaker at home to BYU, was blown out by both Florida and Georgia, and video emerged of a not-so-flattering conversation between Pruitt and a University of Tennessee police officer during former linebacker Jeremy Banks’ arrest.
The Vols are 2-5 and play South Carolina on Oct. 26.
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Nick Bromberg is a writer for Yahoo Sports.
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