Thank goodness for Saturday's Practice

Day two of Camp Dooley was a lot more uneventful than Day one, thank goodness. After Day one Dooley announced that true freshman running back Bryce Brown was no longer a part of the Vols Football program, Saturday morning he just talked about how his team was adjusting to each other and how his players were responding to its third head coach in three years. Go "Inside" for our take today.

Day two of Camp Dooley was a lot more uneventful than Day one, thank goodness.

After Day one Dooley announced that true freshman running back Bryce Brown was no longer a part of the Vols Football program, Saturday morning he just talked about how his team was adjusting to each other and how his players were responding to its third head coach in three years.

"Today was out last day in shorts until the day before the spring game," Dooley said Saturday. "It good to get out of the shorts. What gets hard is that you are teaching new technique and fundamentals. Throw it all in, throw a lot at them, see what sticks and what doesn't"

Tuesday will mark the first day in pads for the Vols and according to Dooley that's when spring ball really starts.

"We are doing a lot of teaching now," Dooley said. "It takes a lot of time. You can get some good teaching without the pads. It requires to use your hands and learn how to be physical."

No breaking news came out of Saturday's practice, a welcome change by a lot of Vol fans and even the media covering today's practice.

QUARTERBACK RACE

Everyone knows senior Nick Stephens has a cannon for an arm, is Junior College transfer Matt Simms arm is as strong?

If it ends up being as strong or stronger, this may be the best quarterback battle the Vols fans have seen in some time.

"I'm feeling good about things right now," Stephens said today. "I'm throwing the ball well, I'm seeing things and learning the offense at a rapid pace."

Simms has shown a lot of good throws in the last two practices and appears to be ready to battle Stephens for the starting role.

"I have been working hard," Simms said Thursday after practice. "Things are going great, I had a great off season, I'm ready to compete and get better everyday."

NOW OR NEVER

Junior offensive lineman Cody Pope realizes his time is running out at Rocky Top. This is his golden opportunity for the California native to step up and not only take a leadership role on this year's offensive line but to prepare himself for a starting role.

"Yeah I realize it's now or never for me, my time is getting short here," Pope acknowledged after practice Saturday. "I'm working extremely hard to learn every position on the offensive line, several of us are. That way we will be better prepared to play anywhere."

Pope also is pleased with his new offensive line Coach Harry Hiestand.

"He really knows what he is talking about," Pope said. "We have already learned so much new stuff from him. I feel I have gotten a lot better today since Thursday's practice. It's good to know that we have someone that has our backs. Coach tells us that if we give 100 percent every play, if we missed the block or assignment it will be his fault."

PICK UP THE TEMPO AND INTENSITY

The players picked up the pace and the intensity today, a big difference from Thursday's first practice.

"We have a lot to get in," Dooley said. "It's our goal to shorten practices and not stay out here forever. So if we are going to accomplish that, we have to work hard at the tempo and get as many reps as possible while we are out here."

INCREDIBLE LEADER AND WORKER

Linebacker Nick Reveiz was seen after practice going over a drill with some of the younger linebackers, coaching them up per say. Then he spent at least 20 minutes with strength and conditioning staff, doing sideways drills to strengthen his knee.

HARD WORKING FRESHMEN

Two of the most improved athletes on the team as far as physical looks may be a tight race between two early enrollees Corey Miller and Jacques Smith.

Both look extremely different, one of Smith's teammates was teasing him about his apparent body improvement.

"He is jacked up, he is swollen up," one teammate said laughing.

ANOTHER BODY MAKEOVER

Is true freshman defensive tackle Montario Hughes. He told media Thursday that he is in the best shape of his life and has lost about 15 pounds.

RECRUITS ON CAMPUS

Watts Dantlzer was on campus this morning taking in Camp Dooley. We will attempt to contact the Georgia lineman to get his thoughts about Tennessee.


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