Monday Practice Report

Tennessee began preparations for MTSU on Monday evening. Coach Fulmer began his session with the media after practice by talking about the Wyoming game. "We didn't beat ourselves, that was a plus we can build on," said Fulmer.

Fulmer also noted that injuries are rapidly becoming a concern. However, they do create an opportunity for some younger players to step into the mix.

Fulmer says the team will not radically change any defensive schemes now that Kevin Burnett is out. Kevin Simon moves into the starting rotation with the linebackers. Overall, Fulmer was pleased with Simon's effort on Saturday.

"He played pretty well...but he made some youthful mistakes." Fulmer pointed to Simon's hustle and play making ability as positives, too. Simon had not played in a game since December of 2000 when he was a prep All-American in California.

Other players expected back from injury include receivers Jonathan Wade and Leonard Scott. Wade is almost fully recovered from a shoulder injury suffered during the pre-season. Scott is listed as probable after spraining his ankle on Saturday. Fulmer says Kelley Washington is making progress but that Chavis Smith still has a long way to go before he is back.

The wide receiving corps also gained the confidence of Fulmer during the opener. Tony Brown is the obvious go-to-guy with Washington out. Derrick Tinsley is another player who gained praise for his ability to get yards after
the catch.

As for MTSU, Fulmer expects "an absolute dog fight". The team caught some of the MTSU/Alabama game before taking the field in Nashville on Saturday.


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