Friday Practice Report

KNOXVILLE -Much like Thursday's workout, Friday's practice was geared towards Saturday's scrimmage. Although the Vols aren't practicing with a full allotment of players, Head Coach Phillip Fulmer liked what he saw from the guys he has available.

So far this off-season, sixteen players have been operated on and another ten aren't cleared to practice. Roshaun Fellows and Ellix Wilson will add their names to the list of surgically repaired Vols when they go under the knife next week.

„Roshaun is probably going to have surgery next Friday," Fulmer said. "Ellix Wilson was supposed to have surgery today. He forgot and ate or drank something and they couldn't do it. He'll have surgery next Friday, too. We expect both of them along with David Holbert (who had surgery this week) to be back 100-percent in the fall."

On the other hand, Fulmer said he expects to see Daniel Brooks competing on Saturday. Brooks, a linebacker, has missed most of spring ball because of a hand infection. He was spotted in pads on Friday.

Defensive back Antwan Stewart hasn't been cleared for contact yet and will be evaluated on a day-to-day basis.

Marvin Mitchell won't see much action this spring either. However, the linebacker seems poised for a breakout year after missing the 2004 season due to a knee injury.

"I think he's got a really bright future," Fulmer said of Mitchell. "He will make us a very competitive linebacker corps because he can play any of the three spots."

Another linebacker, Jon Poe, missed Thursday's practice because of some academic shortcomings. On Friday Fulmer indicated Gerald Riggs was taking care of some schoolwork.

"Yesterday we held Jon Poe out of practice because of academics," Fulmer said. "Today we held Gerald Riggs out of practice because of academics. That really makes me angry that we have to hurt our football team and their only time to be out on the field in the spring because they didn't take care of their business on the front end. We'll play the guys that want to play and want to go to class and want to be fully a part of this team."

Riggs absence is just one of the reasons the team‚s fleet of running backs hasn't been up to par. However, that's not the only reason according to Fulmer.

„It means the defense is doing pretty good," Fulmer said. "I think it's the combination of us not having all the receivers out there to make them play honest and throw the football with some efficiency. I hope we‚re better than what we‚ve shown so far. I think we are."

Saturday's scrimmage is scheduled for 1:30pm inside Neyland Stadium.

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