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Hilldroppers: Vols force five first-quarter turnovers

When you’re a “mid-major” football program facing an SEC school on the road, the last thing you can afford to do is turn the ball over.

So, of course, that’s exactly what Western Kentucky did Saturday. And, boy, did they ever do it.

In a span of six plays and roughly four minutes of the first quarter of the loss to Tennessee, the Hilltoppers turned the ball over a staggering five times. WKU quarterback Brandon Doughty was intercepted three times, while Hilltopper running backs coughed the ball up a pair of times.

The Vols returned two of Doughty’s picks the other way for touchdowns, while the Vols’ offense converted the other three turnovers into 17 points.

And all of that carnage came after the Hilltoppers had taken a 3-0 lead on the strength of an impressive 15-play, 55-yard game-opening drive.

At the time of this posting, UT leads WKU 31-3 early in the second quarter.