''It was tough, feeling for those guys,'' he said recently. ''But sometimes the draft goes that way. I felt both of those guys would go pretty high. I guess the luck of the draw sometimes doesn't let things go your way.
''Obviously, you'd love to have those guys back because I'm sure they'll have great years in the NFL. But we're going to have a great year here at Tennessee. Obviously, we'll miss those guys but I think we definitely have the talent here to be successful.''
Clausen went on to note that the returning receivers are a year older and that versatile safety Mark Jones provided a real boost doubling as a wideout during spring practice.
Now facing his senior season, Clausen took a few moments to reflect on his first three years at UT and how he has changed during that time.
''Obviously, I've grown and matured as a quarterback,'' he said. ''Physically, I've gotten bigger and stronger. I've improved emotionally. Mentally, the game has really slowed down. I've been able to pick up the game pretty quickly.
''Hopefully, my last year at Tennessee, I can go out on a good note ... have a big year.''