Who'll follow Riggs?

The depth chart says Gerald Riggs is Tennessee's No. 1 tailback, with walk-on David Yancey No. 2 and redshirt freshman Arian Foster No. 3. But that may not be the order of substitution in today's opener against Alabama-Birmingham.

Asked which backs other than Riggs will get carries in Game 1, offensive coordinator Randy Sanders shrugged.

"I don't know at this point," he said earlier this week. "I would think there would be some David Yancey. Montario (Hardesty) if he is healthy will probably get some time. Arian Foster has a chance."

Hardesty, a ballyhooed freshman, missed most of preseason drills with a thigh bruise. Before getting hurt, however, he impressed UT's coaches with some dazzling runs in situational scrimmages.

Foster starred in the three full-scale scrimmages, averaging 5.7 yards per carry, but showed a tendency to fumble. So did true freshman LaMarcus Coker, probably the fastest of Tennessee's tailbacks.

It's entirely possible that Riggs, Yancey, Hardesty, Foster and Coker will all see action this afternoon. Fullback Cory Anderson is also due to get some snaps at tailback.

"A lot will depend on how the game is going," Sanders said. "If it turns into a game where we're rolling pretty good offensively, it could be a collection of all of them. If it turns into a game where we're struggling running the ball and we're having to throw the ball quite a bit, it'll be the guys that are good pass protectors."

Coker drew raves from running backs coach Trooper Taylor following full-scale scrimmage No. 2 but apparently fell from favor after leaving the ball on the ground a few times.

"It's a concern," Sanders said. "We haven't really had any live tackling on those guys since he had his last couple of fumbles, so it's still a concern."


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