Kirk Herbstreit admonishes Tennessee fans for embarrassing display
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In the final minute of Tennessee’s 31-26 loss against Ole Miss, a group of fans decided to throw objects onto the field. Ole Miss coaches and players dodged debris as they moved onto the field, delaying the game 20 minutes. ESPN college football analysts Kirk Herbstreit and Matt Barrie offered their thoughts on the Tennessee incident during this week’s ESPN College Football Podcast.

Herbstreit first offered his thoughts on the embarrassing display, making sure not to lump all Tennessee fans with those who threw objects.

“I get hating the former Tennessee head coach Lane Kiffin, I’m ok with booing and being upset if that’s what you need to do,” said Herbstreit. “This is a minority of fans, its not all the Tennessee fans. But it’s enough to make you go ‘really, what are we doing? Throwing objects on the field at a college football game?’”

With mustard bottles, empty beer cans and a golf ball hurling toward the Ole Miss sideline, questions face the fanbase. According to Kirk Herbstreit, the scene provided a huge blow.

“It was embarrassing for their brand,” said Herbstreit. “I have a lot of friends living in Nashville who are Tennessee fans that are heartbroken and humiliated because a few embarrassed that brand. I feel bad for Tennessee, the lost the game, but I feel really bad that a few of their fans embarrassed the Tennessee fanbase.”

Matt Barrie chimes in

After Kirk Herbstreit’s quick hitting thoughts, Matt Barrie expanded on the Tennessee situation. The ESPN play-by-play broadcaster and studio host spoke passionately about the things that drive him nuts.

“Here’s what drives me nuts about it – we had a year of the sport without fans, and it was awful – these silent stadiums suck,” said Barrie. “It was just not fun to watch. I’ve long said that fans being at a golf tournament – or any sport – they’re the oxygen of sports. Fans need to be there. So we finally get fans back in college football – which makes it the game we love – and then you go and act like idiots and delay the game for 20 minutes. It’s the lead story on every sportscast, newscast, it was on the Today Show.”

Supporting Herbstreit’s comments about the negative brand, Barrie continued.

“You don’t need to be the story,” said Barrie. “Fans, you make the game great, don’t make it a headline because you’re acting like idiots. That kind of stuff drives me nuts. It drives me nuts that the fans make it about themselves in a game we should have been celebrating going down to the final possession.”

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