Pressure, pressure, pressure the young quarterback.

This is the one and only thing that should be written on the defensive whiteboard inside the University of Memphis locker room Saturday. The Tiger defense has already proven it can’t stop the passing game, or the run for that matter, and rank second to last in pass defense and third to last in points against (41.5 per game) in the FBS.

The only way the Memphis defense has a chance to stop the normally sputtering Volunteer offense is by making quarterback Tyler Bray make mistakes. The freshman is making his first start at Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium Saturday and has already shown flashes of brilliance against bigger, faster defenses.

One thing that many people may not know about Memphis is that it possesses the second-leading tackler in the nation in linebacker Jamon Hughes. Hughes, a transfer from Mississippi State, is averaging 12.29 tackles per game. Against Southern Miss., Hughes registered 21 stops, the second highest of any Tiger ever. The Tigers must utilize him in some way to slow down the rushing attack of Vol running back Tauren Poole.

On offense, any production is key. The offensive line has been poor against C-USA opponents and has been a large reason the nation’s 96th-ranked passing attack, which averages only about 172 yards per game. The running attack, led by Gregory Ray, is picking up thanks to a 176-yard performance against Houston, but mistakes and fumbles must be eliminated to have a chance.

Stadium noise will not be a factor under the lights to help Memphis this Saturday. In fact, Rocky Top may be the loudest thing that rings through the Liberty Bowl. The Tigers must practice what their coaches have been preaching, which is cutting out the mental mistakes and turnovers, in order to even think about upsetting the Vols this weekend.