Tennessee coach Butch Jones is happy his No. 25 Volunteers came out on top 42-41 in double overtime, but is well aware of the difficulty his defense had with stopping Georgia Tech quarterback TaQuon Marshall in season opener at Mercedes-Benz Stadium on Monday night.
A junior, Marshall set Yellow Jacket records in attempts, yardage and touchdowns against the Volunteers in the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game. His 44 rushing attempts and five rushing touchdowns are the most ever by a Yellow Jackets player, while his 249 rushing yards are the most by a Georgia Tech quarterback in school history.
“First of all, he's very talented, very quick, very, very elusive, and a very, very good football player,” Jones said.
Marshall averaged 5.66 yards per carry in the loss.
Georgia Tech coach Paul Johnson said Marshall was able to run the ball so effectively up the middle because the Volunteers middle linebackers were lined up far off the line of scrimmage.
“They were playing with virtually four guys inside, and we were just following the B-back with a quarterback and run it in there,” Johnson said.
Jones also complimented Marshall’s ability to make plays outside of the tackles.
“I think schematically they challenged him,” Jones said. “They did a great job with some triple option stuff and trap option, getting him out on the perimeter, and he's elusive, he's fast, and he's a good football player.”