UT set for three QBs?

Tennessee coach Phil Fulmer has made headlines this season by playing two quarterbacks. Now Ole Miss coach David Cutcliffe is going a step further; he played three QBs last weekend at South Carolina.

The ploy must have worked because Ethan Flatt, Michael Spurlock and Robert Lane combined to guide the Rebels to a 31-28 upset victory. Flatt got most of the snaps and completed 18 of 27 passes for 214 yards. Spurlock played enough to go 2 of 5 for 22 yards. Lane was 0 of 2 in limited action.

Are three heads better than one? Tennessee finds out this Saturday, when the Vols travel to Oxford to face the Rebels. In 25 years of coaching Vol defensive coordinator John Chavis can't remember ever facing a three-quarterback system.

''Not that I can recall,'' he said. ''It sounds like they're going to do it (rotate QBs) a good bit, so we've got to have a plan for all three of them. That won't vary a lot. We're going to stay with what we do best.''

Flatt, a sophomore, is more of a dropback passer. Spurlock, a junior who opened the season as the starter before surrendering the job, is more of a scrambler. Lane, a redshirt freshman, has played so little that he's something of a mystery man.

''Flatt has a good understanding of the offense and knows how to run it,'' Chavis said. ''There's a certain part of the offense where they give him the option to call the play at the line of scrimmage. I don't think you'll see as much of that with Spurlock.

As for Lane, Chavis called him ''an outstanding athlete that can run or throw. He's probably a combination of the other two.''


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