Tennessee entered the 2007 season with high expectations following a 9-4 season in 2006 that included narrow losses to LSU and eventual National Champion Florida. The Vols returned 11 starters (the 2nd fewest in the SEC), but among those was senior quarterback Erik Ainge. They compiled a regular season record of 9-3, and won the SEC Eastern Division, and fell in a hard fought SEC Championship Game to LSU. Tennessee then went on to defeat the Wisconsin Badgers in the Outback Bowl. The 2007 season was the last at Tennessee for four assistants on the staff. Offensive Coordinator David Cutcliffe left after accepting the head coaching position at Duke University, taking assistants Matt Luke and Kurt Roper with him, while Wide Receivers coach Trooper Taylor accepted a co-Offensive Coordinator's position at Oklahoma State University.