Facing Florida in The Swamp, Tennessee’s offense will need to be at full strength for the Vols to have any shot at taking down the Gators. Thanks to a first-quarter injury, that may or may not be the case.
With just over nine minutes to go in the opening period, Justin Hunter was on the receiving end of a 12-yard Tyler Bray pass that gave the Vols a first down just short of midfield. Unfortunately, Hunter, who had to jump to make the catch, landed awkwardly and went down in a heap clutching his left knee. He was not touched by a UF defender on the play.
After laying on the field for a few minutes and being attended to by UT medical personnel, Hunter walked off the field under his own power. However, after being examined on the sidelines, he was taken to the locker room to undergo further testing.
It was announced during the broadcast that Hunter was suffering from a knee injury — the variety and severity weren’t detailed — and his return is questionable. A subsequent update didn’t bode well, though, as it was intimated the injury is serious in nature.
Hunter leads the Vols with 16 receptions for 302 yards through the first two games.
As for the game, UF leads UT 10-0 after one quarter of play.
UPDATED 5:26 p.m. ET: Head coach Derek Dooley confirmed at halftime that Hunter will not return today. There’s still no word on the exact nature or extent of the injury, although the buzz making its way around is that it could involve an ACL.
UF currently holds a 16-7 halftime lead.