Why Schofield, Vols did Ga­tor chomp

The Commercial Appeal - - Sports - Mike Wil­son Knoxville News Sen­tinel USA TO­DAY NET­WORK - TEN­NESSEE

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Ad­mi­ral Schofield has had a hand­ful of mem­o­rable cel­e­bra­tions this sea­son.

But Satur­day’s op­por­tu­nity to run to­ward the Flor­ida stu­dent sec­tion do­ing the Ga­tor chomp is his fa­vorite yet, as he and his team­mates cel­e­brated after UT’S 78-67 win against the Ga­tors on Satur­day.

“The Ga­tor chomp is al­ways my fa­vorite be­cause I have never liked Flor­ida, never will,’ Schofield said.

It was un­planned, as the oth­ers have been this sea­son, but this cel­e­bra­tion also was dif­fer­ent. Schofield said the mo­ment was build­ing through­out the game based on things be­ing said by Flor­ida fans.

“Their fans were chirp­ing a lot, even be­hind our bench,” Schofield said. “Things that were said from fans that were just older fans. Not even stu­dents. Alumni, maybe. Just very dis­re­spect­ful, in­hu­mane. I won’t re­peat what was said.”

Schofield, of­ten the fo­cal point of op­pos­ing fans, still was yelling to­ward the stands be­hind Ten­nessee’s bench after the win. He did the same dur­ing the sec­ond half.

“It’s bas­ket­ball at the end of the day,” Schofield added. “No mat­ter if it’s Ten­nessee vs. Flor­ida, Michi­gan vs. Ohio State. It’s a sport. No one should be called out their name like that. It’s big-time for us. I’m glad we got the win. The Ga­tor chomp was just the emo­tion from that.

“We still have some class, but at the same time, when we are dis­re­spected, why show re­spect back?”

Schofield wasn’t alone in do­ing the Ga­tor chomp on the court after the win. Grant Wil­liams was in the fore­front of the ac­tion. Jor­dan Bone, Jor­dan Bow­den, La­monte Turner and John Fulk­er­son also got in on the mo­ment.

“It just hap­pens in the mo­ment,” said Bow­den, who scored 12 of his 17 points in a blitz to lead UT to the win. “I saw AD run over there to the stu­dent sec­tion do­ing. I don’t usu­ally cel­e­brate like that, but I had to do it, too.”

Ten­nessee trailed by three with 8:16 to play be­fore Bow­den scored 12 straight points in less than three min­utes. Schofield sealed the win with a clutch 3-pointer from the cor­ner to give UT a five-point lead with 41.3 sec­onds to play.

Schofield has had a few mo­ments like that this sea­son as No. 3 Ten­nessee (14-1, 3-0 SEC) has rolled through the past cou­ple months. He’s also had the cel­e­bra­tions to fol­low.

After he scored 25 sec­ond-half points in UT’S win against then-no. 1 Gon­zaga, Schofield bolted into the stands to find his fa­ther and cel­e­brate the win in Phoenix.

Less than a week later, Schofield ran around the floor at Mem­phis’ Fedex­fo­rum pulling out the “Ten­nessee” across the chest of his jer­sey in front of the Mem­phis fans.

“Ad­mi­ral is al­ways the ring leader of ev­ery­thing,” Bow­den said. “Ad­mi­ral is al­ways like that.”

Sun­day’s Top 25 game

No. 6 Michi­gan State 71, Penn State 56: Nick Ward had 16 points and 11 re­bounds to lead Michi­gan State to a win over host Penn State. Matt Mcquaid added 15 points and Cas­sius Win­ston chipped in 11 for the Spar­tans (15-2, 6-0 Big Ten), who have won 10 straight. They also beat the Nit­tany Li­ons (7-10, 0-6) for the 10th con­sec­u­tive time. Kenny Goins added 10 re­bounds for the Spar­tans, who only trailed for 10 sec­onds and led by as many as 21 with 6:44 to play. Lamar Stevens led Penn State (7-10, 0-6) with 20 points. Myles Dread, Josh Reaves and Mike Watkins all scored 11 points. — As­so­ci­ated Press

Grant Wil­liams (2) and Ad­mi­ral Schofield (5) of Ten­nessee taunt the fans with the Ga­tor chomp after de­feat­ing Flor­ida Ga­tors on Satur­day in Gainesville, Fla. DOU­GLAS DEFELICE/USA TO­DAY

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