Savion's revenge

After dropping three would-be interceptions a week earlier in Scrimmage No. 2, Tennessee linebacker Savion Frazier heard a lot of wisecracks from his teammates.

When a pass came his way Saturday in Scrimmage No. 3, however, all he heard was the crunch of his cleats on the turf as he rambled approximately 50 yards for a touchdown.

Redemption was too sweet for words ... almost. Frazier recalled that the kidding he took from teammates following his butter-fingered performance in Scrimmage 2 was downright brutal.

"They were on me all week about that," he said, shaking his head at the recollection. "All of my roommates are DBs, so they always stay on me about how I can't catch."

Frazier was so embarrassed by the drops that he stayed after practice every day to work on his pass-catching skills. Sometimes he caught balls thrown by strength coach Bennie Wylie. When Wylie wasn't available, Frazier caught passes fired at him by a Jugs machine.

"I worked all week with Bennie and worked on the Jugs," Frazier said, literally beaming, "and I was able to put my hands on the ball today."

Frazier's interception, which came at the expense of No. 1 quarterback Matt Simms, reportedly was no easy catch. The linebacker leaped high to tip the ball, then came down with the deflection.

If he could make such a difficult catch, you have to wonder why he dropped three balls that hit him in the hands seven days earlier.

"It was lack of concentration," he said. "I should've caught them balls. I'm not going to put that on anything ... slippery hands. I've got to catch those, regardless, so I put the gloves on today."

Although he redeemed himself by hanging on to Saturday's interception, Frazier continues to be lampooned for his earlier drops.

Asked about the performance of Vol defenders during the two-hour scrimmage, senior end Chris Walker grinned smugly as he replied: "Savion actually caught a pick today, so that was good."

Even Derek Dooley took a good-natured shot at the senior linebacker.

"I guess our quarterbacks were thinking he can't catch, so if we're going to throw it to them, throw it to that guy," the Vols' head man said. "But he proved them wrong today."

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