KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — “Third Down for What” has been cut.
After offseason rumors, Tennessee officially ended its third-down rallying-cry Monday, as coach Butch Jones announced Lil John’s parody of ‘Turn Down for What’ would not longer be used in Neyland Stadium this fall.
“We’re going to do some things different on third down,” Jones said.
“We’ll mix up some different songs to get our crowd energized. We have to (continue) to make Neyland Stadium a home-field advantage for us, and situational football comes into play.”
Tennessee has actually played the anthem with considerable success for the last two seasons. The Volunteers finished No. 2 nationally — first in the SEC — in third-down defense in 2015. In 2014, Tennessee ranked second in conference forcing opponents off the field on third down.
However, UT is changing the song in part because the anthem was mentioned in Tennessee’s recent Title IX lawsuit due to Lil John’s lyrics in other songs.
On Monday, Jones indicated the Volunteers ‘Pride of the Southland Marching Band’ would be more involved in gameday events this fall.
“Every season you’re looking to enhance your gameday environment,” Jones said.
Jesse Simonton covers Tennessee football and recruiting for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution and SECCountry.com