Vols' Palardy enjoying breakthrough in senior year

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- Tennessee's Michael Palardy is one of the nation's busiest special-teams performers.

Lately, he also has been among the best.

Palardy is part of a small group of players serving as the main field-goal kicker, klckoff specialist and punter for their respective schools. Palardy has welcomed the heavy workload while emerging as one of Tennessee's most valuable players.

His 19-yard field goal Saturday as time expired in Tennessee's 23-21 victory over South Carolina continued the best season of this senior's career. The loss dropped South Carolina from 11th to 20th in the Top 25. Palardy also ranks 13th nationally in punting with an average of 44.5 yards per attempt.

The Volunteers (4-3, 1-2 SEC) need another big game from Palardy on Saturday to have a shot against top-ranked Alabama (7-0, 4-0).

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