Vols will try two QBs

ATHENS – The last time two inexperienced Tennessee quarterbacks entered Sanford Stadium it was not a pleasant night for the Vols.

Mark Richt hopes his Georgia team can recreate the same sort of uneasy feeling Tennessee felt that night. The Volunteers fell to Georgia (4-0) 21-10 in 2000. It was their first loss to the Bulldogs since 1988.

Since then Georgia has dominated the series. Now, in a game where it's not unheard of for a freshman quarterback to lead an upset over a highly ranked foe on the road, Tennessee comes into Athens with two talented, but raw signal callers.

"Were using freshman and we are growing," said Tennessee head coach Phil Fulmer. "They are not ready to go win the game by themselves." The Vols (3-1) are ranked 17th in this week's polls.

Richt said Tennessee's freshmen quarterbacks impressed him earlier this season. "They just jumped right in as true freshmen, and that's hard to do," he said.

Richt was particularly impressed with two wins: "They both played well against Florida and UNLV and I think they've gained a lot of experience to this point, four games under your belt is quite a lot of football. I think that will serve them well on their first road game."

Richt says the difference maker this weekend could be a Sanford Stadium crowd. Tennessee's first road game will come against a hostile Georgia crowd that was louder than ever in last week's blow out win over LSU.

"It will be the first time dealing with the kind of noise our crowd is going to generate. I'm sure they'll be prepared, but that takes some getting used to the first time you go through it," Richt said.

The Volunteers' win over Florida earlier this season had Richt wondering how the duo could be so skilled at such an early stage of their career.

"I was saying to myself ‘how did these guys get so good so fast?'" Richt said.

"I think they work well together," said Georgia saftey Thomas Davis. "(Erik) Ainge is going to be more of a pocket passes, while (Brent) Schaeffer will come out and create havoc by running the ball and creating passes off the run.

However, Ainge and Schaeffer could not win at home against Auburn. The Volunteers turned the ball over six times, four of which were Ainge interceptions and one of which was Schaeffer's. Their head coach was disappointed with their play, but tried to stay positive.

"I padded them on the rear after the Auburn game and encouraged them – we'll fight another day," Fulmer said.


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