Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Derek Dooley is stuck in a moment that he can't get out of.

It's been a couple of months since the Tennessee Volunteers lost their first game to the Kentucky Wildcats in football since 1984. How has Tennessee head football coach Derek Dooley dealt with the loss? Not very well, apparently.

"That game will bother me for the rest of my life," Dooley said Thursday during an end of the season meeting with the News Sentinel. "It eats me alive. I didn't sleep for a week after that game.

"I'm not sure how long I will go in time without thinking about that game at some point in the day."

Of course, he is trying to spin the loss into a positive direction.

"I believe this in my heart — going through that will make us better for next year," Dooley said. "I do, I believe that in my heart. Did it hurt us in December? Of course it did. Did it hurt us to the point where we can't overcome? Absolutely not. I think it's going to make us better.

"I watch those workouts out there, I don't believe that team would be in the place they're in right now had we beaten Kentucky. I don't believe it, because they're in a different place right now. And I'm in a different place as a coach. That game has allowed us to sharpen our focus. It's allowed us to not live in an illusion that everything is great, which it wasn't. That's why I said what I said, that we needed this to happen."

Of course, Tennessee fans never see losses as positive. And if the Vols have as 2012 season as disappointing season as the 2011itteration, then Dooley will have a lot more time on his hands to reflect on the Kentucky loss.

(via The Knoxville News Sentinel)

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