Posts Tagged ‘Denarius Moore’
Nexium For Sale, It’s been a bumpy couple of weeks for the Tennessee Volunteers and their fans, on that there is little room for debate.
First, the Vols lost to Florida in a “moral victory” which amounts to losing gallantly. The Vols then went on to beat a scrappy Ohio Bobcats team in less than runaway style, but as I said at the time: “a win is a win.” Then, this past weekend, the men in orange were bested by the Auburn Tigers and Gus Malzahn’s semi-deranged (but highly effective) form of offense. Finally, Lane Kiffin gave Brandon Warren his walking papers as a result of what Kiffin described as “conduct detrimental to our team.”
For my part, I have had little to offer on these issues due to my ridiculously overloaded schedule. Trust me when I say that it was not for lack of desire or lack of observations that I have been so quiet.
Fortunately (or unfortunately, depending on your perspective) I now have a little time to pontificate, so here we go…
Auburn and “Johnnie Cochran” Offense
Gus Malzahn is either a genius or a madman depending on whether you are a fan of the Tigers or are their opponent. His offensive sets are as entropy-filled and outlandish as they are effective. One of the keys to its function is to make an opposing defense deal with the constant distraction of the seemingly endless arsenal of quasi-trick plays that it includes. This bevy of distractions vying for the attention of opposing defenses, reminds me of pretty much every argument ever made to a jury by Johnnie Cochran—focusing on the distraction rather than the fact.
Still, there is a lot of fact to Malzahn’s ability to mask his plays and to run unconventional sets regularly and successfully. I personally cannot remember seeing a game which featured as many reverses and double-reverses as the Tennessee -- Auburn contest. I know that I have never seen a true pooch punt (seemingly taken right out of General Neyland’s own playbook from the 1930s) in person. To Malzahn’s credit, he has taken a lackluster unit that barely produced anything other than narcolepsy in 2008 and transformed them into a machine which scores tons of points and gives defenses fits.
Going Down Swinging
All of that said, I was fairly happy with the way that the Full Monte’s defense schemes matched-up against Malzahn’s maniacal offense. Sure, the defensive line could have performed a bit better and perhaps the secondary could have been a little more on top of things, but on the whole, the Tennessee defense played more than well enough to secure the win. Furthermore, with the loss of Nick Reveiz the week before, there was bound to be a little bit of flux in the game as Savion Frazier assumed the task of setting the defensive backfield. The effort was there. Take, for instance, the tackle totals for Rico McCoy (16 tackles) and Eric Berry (14 tackles), and Savion Frazier (10 tackles) if you don’t believe me.
These things aside, the real problem for the Vols’ defense against Auburn was not anything related to the Vols’ defense. On the contrary, it was the offense that led to the defense’s downfall.
The first half of the game Tennessee put on a clinic on how not to play quarterback and receiver. With the exception of Montario Hardesty’s inspired running (into the teeth of a waiting defense), it was atrocious. At the end of the first half, Auburn held a massive time of possession advantage of 19:31 to Tennessee’s 10:29. As a result, the Vols’ defense spent most of the first half on the field chasing Auburn’s offense hither and yon. By the end of the first half, the Tennessee offense’s ineptitude had completely tired out the typically rock-solid defense.
Everyone Wants the Headset
That brings us to the question that everyone keeps asking: why does the Blackjack General refuse to bench Crompton and give junior Nick Stephens a try?
During my liveblogging twitteriffic series of posts during the game, I asked this question, albeit indirectly. I have since thought better of it. The fact of the matter is that Jonathan Crompton is the quarterback that multiple offensive coaching staffs have determined is the best player to put on the field. Thus, who am I to second-guess their decision. While I won’t re-publish it here (due to the fact I am trying to stay positive with regard to the quarterback play) I must say that this post at VolNation did really drive home for me the reality that Tennessee is facing this season. I trust our coaching staff and remain impressed with the progress they have made in this re-building campaign. They know what they are doing, and more importantly, who they have in the stable. Tennessee has strengths and weaknesses. Strong players and not so strong players. Either way, (with the exception of the highly talented freshmen) they are what this staff inherited and what they have to work with.
Like it or not, the players we have are the players we have and there is nothing that can be done about it at this point in time…
In the second half, however, Crompton actually performed quite well and seemed to find a rhythm. What exactly it was that was causing a problem in the first half is anyone’s guess, but the difference in these two halves was like night and day. In Crompton’s defense, the receivers were as bad—if not worse—than the quarterback play. In particular, Quintin Hancock, Gerald Jones, and Denarius Moore all had drops while Brandon Warren failed to fall on a fumble which led to a change in possession.
Which brings us to the Brandon Warren situation…
Crime and Punishment, Tennessee Style
[caption id="" align="alignright" width="105" caption="Brandon Warren"][/caption]
I will be the first to go on the record as saying that I am pleased (more like “thrilled” or “elated”) that we have a coach who is willing to discipline his players in a manner which respects not only the ends of the football program (i.e. “winning”) but also serves to honor the game, the University of Tennessee, Nexium price, its alumni, Where can i cheapest Nexium online, and the principles of respect that come with any hierarchy.
As I have said in the past, I have a very simple (some might say naive) perspective on how players should be disciplined:
… my thoughts are that there should only be three rules of increasing severity — built on the concept that a team lives and dies as a group — for any team, which should be enforced without exception:
Rule 1: Never do anything that will embarrass yourself. — In this case I would lump things like not going to class, Nexium natural, bad discipline in practices, Nexium dangers, being late to practices, and potentially recklessness in a game (such as unwarranted personal fouls), etc. The penalty for infractions would be that the player is publicly reprimanded in very plain and unfiltered terms before his teammates, about Nexium, and the entire team runs or does some other unpleasant drill as a result of the infraction by one of its members.
Rule 2: Never do anything that will embarrass your team. — This would include general bad behavior that falls under Rule 1, Get Nexium, if it is repeated. In other words, repeat offenses of a Rule 1 violation calls into question the cohesiveness of the team, and thus reflects on the team. This would also include any “minor” entanglements with the local constabulary such as: drunk and disorderly, Nexium from mexico, speeding, Cheap Nexium no rx, underage consumption, misdemeanor possession of marijuana, etc, order Nexium from United States pharmacy. — essentially anything which doesn’t involve fundamental dishonesty and/or risk to the physical well-being of others. The penalty for infractions would be a mandatory one-game suspension, My Nexium experience, being reprimanded openly in front of teammates, all members of the player’s squad losing privileges, the entire team doing twice as many laps or drills as for a Rule 1 violation, real brand Nexium online, and the team captains being required to do an even greater penance — along with the offender. The offender would also be required to make some sort of public apology or public sign of remorse along with some goodwill public service (i.e. Buy Nexium online cod, visiting the children’s ward at the hospital, raking leaves for the infirm, etc.).
Rule 3: Never do anything that will embarrass your university, Nexium recreational, its staff, Buying Nexium online over the counter, students, and alumni. — This would be the most serious violation. This would include any real criminal behavior such as a felony. The immediate response would be an investigation by the coaching staff. If it appeared that the offender was not guilty of the charges, then the player would be suspended for the remainder of the season until cleared by law enforcement officials or the Courts, Nexium gel, ointment, cream, pill, spray, continuous-release, extended-release, with the assumption that the player will be dismissed if not cleared. During that time, Nexium dose, the offender would essentially serve as the lowest-level trainer and would be given the worst jobs associated with a football team. If the staff determined that the player was likely guilty, then the player would be immediately dismissed from the team, and a public statement issued explaining why. Regardless of the guilt or innocence of the offender, Nexium street price, the entire team would have a major privilege suspended for at least half of the season. The members of the offender’s squad and the team captains would be treated as if each of them had violated Rule 1 by not taking adequate steps to prevent the offense or hold their teammate accountable. Again, Nexium for sale, the whole team would also be required to perform additional drills.
The goal of this system would be to instill mutual responsibility among team members and to emphasize that when one falls short, all fall short. I am responsible for my brother and my brother is responsible for me. No coaching staff can ever police or monitor players at all times — no matter how vigilant. When properly channeled, what is Nexium, peer pressure can be a beautiful thing, Nexium description, and is the sort of thing which goes with a player everywhere he goes. This system is also meant to emphasize that, when you are in a position of honor (being a member of the team) then sometimes guilt by association is all that is required to warrant a penalty — it simply comes with the territory.
Lawvol on Rules: 2008 Big Orange Roundtable: Week 6 (Question 2)
Thus, I have no problem with the man in charge making the call that it’s time to, canada, mexico, india, as Doc Holliday put it, Buy cheap Nexium no rx, “redefine the nature of our association” as a program with one of the players.
I honestly hate it for Brandon Warren, he is obviously a talented player and one which could have fit into the Vols plan for the future nicely, but instead he chose a different course—one which is divergent from the path that this coaching staff has set. It is a shame, Nexium cost, considering that Warren—who was a 2006 Sporting News Freshman All-American while at Florida State, Nexium australia, uk, us, usa, and had tallied a total of 17 catches for 139 yards and 2 touchdowns at Tennessee—was getting quality playing time under the Kiffin regime. So much potential…
That said, when I heard that he had been involved in some sort of altercation with wide receivers coach Frank Wilson during the game, I was hoping that Kiffin took some action. I was honestly pleased at Kiffin’s decision—resolute, buy cheap Nexium, uncompromising, Australia, uk, us, usa, firm, direct. In an environment that seems to want to welcome Michael Vick back into the NFL with open arms and defend LeGarrette Blount in the wake of his punching of Boise State’s Byron Hout, I was—I must confess—actually a little shocked to see that there are still standards in the world of big-time athletics.
The sort of behavior that Warren exhibited has no place in the game, Nexium over the counter, and I applaud Kiffin for taking action. Nexium mg,
Players who are focused only on themselves, ignoring those around them and the order that must exist within the game, should not be tolerated. That sort of behavior is a cancer for a team and a staff. It erodes team morale—demonstrating that some players are more important that the team as a whole. It breeds disrespect. It degrades the quality of the unit. It flies in the face of what makes college football great. No player is bigger than the team.
What’s more, Nexium schedule, Kiffin’s actions not only serve as a strong warning to other misbehavior, No prescription Nexium online, but it also reinforces the position of his coaching staff. Showing everyone that the man at the top will support those who are on his side, even if it is uncomfortable, even if it is not pleasant, Nexium online cod, even if it is not easy.
Though I wish Brandon Warren all the best in his future endeavours, Buy Nexium online no prescription, and thank him for his contribution to Tennessee, I applaud Coach Kiffin for taking a stand.
The Silver Lining
After this litany of negativity, there is some good news to be had.
First, is Nexium addictive, the Vols, Nexium blogs, though far from their end goal, continue to make progress toward returning to prominence. The running game has been impressive on the back of Montario Hardesty, Bryce Brown, Nexium wiki, Marsalis Teague, Buy Nexium without a prescription, and David Oku. The attitude from this group has been exceptional and their performance has improved every single week.
Furthermore, who knows, maybe Oku or Teague may now find themselves filling the shoes that Warren left empty—earning more playing time as a result.
Another key to the Vols running success has been the yeoman’s work of fullback Kevin Cooper, doses Nexium work, who has helped pave the way for the running backs out of the backfield with the help of the Vols re-tooled (and infinitely more productive) offensive line.
A few other things to smile about: there were no interceptions against Auburn and no sacks. At least the Vols know how to pass protect.
There are many more positives that I could point to, Buy no prescription Nexium online, but the end conclusion is that Tennessee is a work in progress—and will continue to be so for the remainder of the season. The Vols are not going to win a championship, but they are going to overcome, and improve. The coaching staff has a plan and the dedication to see it through to completion. The pieces are all there, Nexium from canadian pharmacy, they simply need time to fall into place.
Rebuilding is no fun, Discount Nexium, but sometimes it is necessary. The bright side is that it will only get better into the future. For now, the orange-clad faithful need to simply support this team, its players, and the coaches. They are making strides. More importantly, this team needs the support of the fanbase.
Before every game, the players tap the lucky sign reading “I will give my all for Tennessee today!” We ask a lot of these players, all they ask for is that we support them for trying.
I for one intend to give this team my “all” as a fan, come what may…
Image(s) Courtesy of: UT Sports.com || Statement on Fair Use.
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Western Kentucky vs. Tennessee
Buy Reglan Without Prescription, Well, there are so very many positive things to say about this game that it is hard to really know where to start, thus, I’ll just start at the top, here are the stats for the game:
|3rd Down Efficiency|
|4th down efficiency|
|Penalties - Yards|
|TOTAL NET YARDS|
The stats speak loudly. Tennessee racked up a whopping 710 total net yards. Last season the Vols managed only 3,225 yards on the season, today they produced over 20% of last season’s total yards in a single game. They scored more points than they have since the 2000 game against the Arkansas Razorbacks. Even more surprising was the balance in the offensive yardage between the pass and the run.
I am hardly surprised that the Vols managed big numbers on the ground, but the passing game was a pleasant surprise—oh what a change from 2008.
In fact Jonathan Crompton pretty much had a career day while Nick Stephens also notched some quality time:
|J. Reglan trusted pharmacy reviews, Crompton|
On this point, Reglan overnight, Comprar en línea Reglan, comprar Reglan baratos, I am really happy for Jonathan Crompton. After all of the adversity he suffered through last year, it is so nice to see Crompton have a strong showing. As I mentioned during the liveblog earlier, cheap Reglan no rx, Purchase Reglan online no prescription, Crompton just looked like he felt much more comfortable and confident in the pocket. He looked like he knew what he was supposed to do. He looked like he understood the plan and he looked like a quarterback who was having fun. In several of the shots from the SEC Network broadcast you could see him smiling in the huddle. After a 2008 season in which he received death threats from Tennessee fans, I am so glad for this young man to see him go out and be able to perform the way (according to Clay Travis’ “On Rocky Top”) he had dreamed of since he was a child.
What a change a year can make…
On the receiving end of Crompton’s passes were a bevy of Volunteers. It was nice to see a lot of players getting a lot of touches. Of particular note were Marsalis Teague, Reglan online cod, Reglan from mexico, Quintin Hancock, and Nu’Keese Richardson who combined for 182 yard receiving, Reglan no rx, Reglan price, coupon, while tight end Luke Stocker added 23 yards and two touchdowns. Nice to see that the Kiffin cadre of coaches realize that the big guy at the end of the line can catch the ball too.
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Despite the worst fears of fans of the Vols, the men in orange look like they have finally shaken off the sour taste of offensive ineptitude that was so pervasive in 2008. Again, Reglan long term, Effects of Reglan, a nice change.
Of course the running game was hardly lacking.
|B, australia, uk, us, usa. Reglan pharmacy, Brown|
|D, Buy Reglan Without Prescription. Oku|
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Montario Hardesty led with a banner day of 160 yards—more than half of the 271 yards he had in all of 2008. Freshman Bryce Brown also showed why he was the number one ranked recruit in the country with his 107 yards in his first game in an orange shirt, herbal Reglan. Canada, mexico, india, Meanwhile, Tauren Poole and David Oku added 58 and 47 yards respectively.
Of course all of this was made possible by the excellent zone blocking by the Vols’ offensive line which opened holes that even I could have run through. Nice game by the big guys in the trenches
I expected the Tennessee defense to look tough and they did. I was really stuck by how well they seemed to be able to adapt to both the pass and the run. This was particularly apparent when, Reglan description, Buy Reglan online cod, with about 4:50 to go in the second quarter Western Kentucky attempted a reverse. The quarterback, showing a pass had a face full of orange as he made the pitch, order Reglan from mexican pharmacy, Where can i buy Reglan online, but the backs were all over the reverse as they brought the carrier down for a loss.
I will be honest, I am still trying to learn what to look for in the Monte Kiffin’s “Tennessee Two” defense, Reglan australia, uk, us, usa, Reglan gel, ointment, cream, pill, spray, continuous-release, extended-release, but all I can say is that the Vol defenders have clearly taken to the Full Monte’s scheme.
I did not try to keep track of the specific calls today, but for the first time in years I was thrilled to see that I did not always know what was coming next. There was a great mixture of run, cheap Reglan, Reglan no prescription, pass, pocket, buy Reglan from mexico, Reglan alternatives, roll-out, off-tackle, Reglan maximum dosage, Reglan results, sweep, and over-the-middle. Heck, Reglan reviews, Buy Reglan online no prescription, we even got to see the direct snap (which I imagine UCLA will be looking at meaningfully this week). I’ll probably have a better grasp on exactly what we did and when after I get a chance to watch the game again. For now, however, buy cheap Reglan no rx, all I can say is that the Vols looked very well coached—they were not flawless, but they knew what they were supposed to do. This game was an excellent way to start the Lane Kiffin era as the Blackjack General was clearly in command of the field.
Yes, I think we may have made the right choice in terms of coaches.
Yes, this was only Western Kentucky. Yes, we were supposed to win this game. We were also supposed to win our games against the UCLA Bruins and the Wyoming Cowboys last year. I know that the competition level is going increase exponentially in the coming weeks. Still, at least Tennessee has shown that it has a solid grasp on fundamentals. They have shown that they can play as a team. They have shown that they have the ability to do great things.
Do we know how they will match up against the Florida Gators? No. But at least we know that they are ready to play.
After all, I’ll take a win over a loss any day of the week…
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This Week's Roundtable is hosted by:
Buy Imitrex Without Prescription, In the interest of full disclosure, HSH sent me his responses to this week’s questions earlier in the week. In theory, I was then supposed assemble a post including my answers along with his. In theory, this sounds simple … in theory. Reality is quite a different matter. I have been woefully unreliable in terms of my posting of late due to my “real life,” and more specifically, my “real job.”
Thus, as a result of me being completely backed-up in preparation for an upcoming trial (a/k/a “evidence manipulation conference”) I am yet again forced to punt—at least for the moment. This is particularly annoying considering how great the questions are this week. Thus, for now the only answers I have to offer are those from HSH—which is probably a good thing considering that he actually knows what he’s talking about. I will try to add in my responses later, if possible. Until then, however, here are HSH’s thoughts for the week:
1) Which newcomer do you expect to play the most total snaps for the Vols this fall?
HSH: Well, by the looks of things, we know for sure it won't be Bryce Brown, though he may be the best talent of the freshmen.
Though I have trouble remembering him actually being a freshman, it almost has to be Montori Hughes at defensive tackle, simply because of the lack of depth at defensive tackle and the sore, wobbly knees of senior end-turned-tackle Wes Brown. With Brown's knees, its almost more a question of when as opposed to if they're going to take him out of action. I have to take this moment to say his never-quit attitude and what he's been saying about his situation has him rapidly climbing up my favorite 2009 Vols.
Back to Hughes, I said he doesn't seem like a freshman because of three things: first, he's obviously from the 2008 class out of Siegel High School in middle Tennessee, but didn't qualify. Secondly, he enrolled in January, so he was in for the spring, so it's like he's been at UT for longer than the other freshman. Finally, it's because he's a very large man. Either way, it's clear he's moved up to the third tackle spot, behind Williams and Brown and ahead of Victor Thomas, Rae Sykes and Marlon Walls.
But given the situation at defensive tackle behind Big Dan Williams, Hughes has to be the freshman who will see the most action.
As for the "true" freshman with the most impact, I'll say receiver Marsalis Teague. I went to last Thursday's practice and last Saturday's scrimmage, and Teague had some impressive plays. I think Gerald Jones and Brandon Warren will be the top 2 wideouts, but Teague is my third (and Quintin Hancock fourth), given the injury to Denarius Moore. Also, Teague seems like more a pure receiver than Nu'Keese Richardson in my opinion.
Lawvol: (Long thoughtful pause followed by a longer, yet less thoughtful, sucking sound…)
2) Assuming we all believe Gerald Jones is going to lead the team in receptions again this season, who will finish second?
HSH: I somewhat addressed Tennessee's receivers in the previous question, and I'll go with who I said was the second receiver there: Brandon Warren. As I said, from last Thursday and last Saturday, my reaction to see #1 running routes and catching passes was one of amazement. In other words, I was surprised how he was a "tight end" last year and how he caught maybe 10 passes last year. He easily passes the eye test as a wide receiver.
One final thought: Jones led UT with 30 catches last year and Lucas Taylor led the Vols in yards. Taylor caught 26 passes. Who was third? Arian Foster with 19. Josh Briscoe and Austin Rogers were the next wide receivers, with both catching 14. All that is to say again how ineffective the quarterbacks were last year. Hopefully the second and third leading receivers this year have more catches—which you think has to happen, right?
Lawvol: Objection! Leading, calls for speculation, and assumes facts not in evidence… (sorry, it's just a habit)
3) If Tim Tebow and Eric Berry are the two best players in the SEC, who's third?
HSH: Give me Brandon Spikes, Florida's middle linebacker, who turned down a boatload of money from an NFL team to stay and try to win another national championship (vomit).
I've seen Terrance Cody and Rolando McClain, but I'll take Spikes, the leader and best player on the league's top defense. Oh, and also this amusing celebration of a pick-six against LSU last year, and his best Eric Berry impression.
Honorable mention: Ole Miss QB Jevan Snead, Cody and McClain on the Alabama defense, Georgia LB Rennie Curran (SEC's leading returner tackler), running back Charles Scott from LSU, the other 11 players on Florida's defense and a trio of wide receivers: Julio Jones (Alabama), A.J. Green (UGA) and Brandon LaFell (LSU).
Lawvol: (Note the theme song to "the Smurfs" playing in the background…)
4) Generally speaking, which opposing SEC fanbase is your favorite to interact with, Imitrex trusted pharmacy reviews. No prescription Imitrex online, And which is your least favorite?
HSH: I'll start with the least favorite, and that's Georgia. I went to Athens for the 51-33 beatdown as a college freshman in 2006 and I got treated worse there than I did in trips to more vaunted venues in Gainesville (2007) and Tuscaloosa (2005 and 2007).
I got incessantly and constantly barked at, generic Imitrex, Imitrex use, which is fine but extremely annoying. But even more so, my friends and I got cursed at because we had orange on. They had no respect for me. I had sorority girls looking great in red and black dresses dropping the F-bomb at me completely unprovoked. The typical, Imitrex coupon, Buy no prescription Imitrex online, expected stuff—"Tennessee sucks," "Fulmer sucks, Imitrex natural, Imitrex for sale, " "nothing sucks like a Big Orange," the Gator Chomp, where can i buy Imitrex online, Imitrex pharmacy, Roll Tide, War Eagle, online buying Imitrex, Imitrex from canadian pharmacy, Pig Sooie, etc., herbal Imitrex, Buy Imitrex without prescription, etc.—doesn't bother me a bit. But profanity?
I'm not saying I can't handle it, but c'mon. If I'm doing some chatting too, buy Imitrex without a prescription, Real brand Imitrex online, that's one thing. I don't get belligerent at visitors in Knoxville unless they provoke me—and even then, I'm not yelling at them to “eff” their school or “eff” themselves. Some common courtesy would be nice.
Though I have a higher disdain for Florida and Alabama because they're our biggest rivals, Imitrex duration, Buy Imitrex online cod, Georgia will always be #3 on that list because of that trip to Athens.
As for the favorite, I would have to say Auburn, Imitrex maximum dosage, Imitrex class, because as I've said repeatedly I have friends there and I can't find any reason to really dislike them. I haven't been to Baton Rouge (or Columbia or Fayetteville - been everywhere else), but I haven't had any issues with LSU fans when they've come to Knoxville and Atlanta.
But overall, online Imitrex without a prescription, Purchase Imitrex online, I don't know if I have a "favorite"—it's more of a feeling of indifference than a preference one way or another.
Lawvol: This one I can actually answer, well, where to buy Imitrex, Purchase Imitrex for sale, sort of. I have pretty much addressed this in the past on more than one occasion. I was probably clearest in my article “The State of Hate: Football Rivalries at Tennessee,” which continues to be true for me today.
The Rest of the Roundtable:
Having wasted your time on our largely meaningless and insignificant thoughts for this week, order Imitrex from mexican pharmacy, Imitrex overnight, go check out what the other roundtablers (who actually know what they are talking about) have to say (in no particular order):
- Rocky Top Talk
- 3rd Saturday in Blogtober
- MoonDog Sports
- Vol Junkies
- Pigskin Pathos
- Bleeding Orange
- Loser With Socks
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Betnovate For Sale, In exactly one month and one day Tennessee will open up the 2009 season here in Knoxville against Western Kentucky. And if you weren't ready for the season already, Betnovate used for, Betnovate dangers, you'd better start getting ready, as the Vols open up the preseason camp today.
After spending the last part of last week down in Gulf Shores, order Betnovate from mexican pharmacy, Purchase Betnovate online, Alabama, I'm ready for September 5th to get here, Betnovate samples. Australia, uk, us, usa, It's going to be my last season of UT football as a UT student, and I'm ready to get last season out of my mind completely (and to figure out how the new student ticket system is/is not going to work), Betnovate from mexico. Is Betnovate safe, The last time I walked out of Neyland Stadium. The Wyoming game, about Betnovate. You see my point...
But while I was down on vacation, three things stoked my anticipation not only from September through November (and hopefully as close to January as possible), but for this coming four weeks of practices, Betnovate For Sale. Online Betnovate without a prescription, Those three things and my preseason practice thoughts after the jump.
First, the SEC previews that ran all last week, Betnovate blogs. Betnovate from canadian pharmacy, Obviously doing the necessary homework on those only focuses your mind more on the upcoming season, and getting the chance to go back through those as I posted them and the discussion that ensued furthered that as well.
Secondly, no prescription Betnovate online, Buy Betnovate online no prescription, the Vols' big week recruiting the wide receivers of the future. In recruiting, Betnovate class, Buy Betnovate no prescription, supposedly what generally happens is you get a quarterback and he attracts the offensive skill position players. Well, generic Betnovate, Betnovate forum, the Vols are bucking that trend and trying to make it work the opposite way. Betnovate For Sale, As you probably know by now, Markeith Ambles and Matt Milton committed last week.
Ambles at one point had an offer from USC and chose Tennessee over Florida, Alabama and others. Milton is a big WR (6-foot-6), purchase Betnovate online no prescription, Betnovate from canada, and his commitment was much less of a surprise than the one from Ambles. Both guys are Rivals four-star guys who are capable of attracting the QB we're all chasing.
But that wasn't it: Rivals' top-rated receiver Kyle Prater was in town Saturday on an unofficial visit, Betnovate australia, uk, us, usa, Betnovate trusted pharmacy reviews, and he had glowing things to say about his time in Knoxville. He didn't commit, order Betnovate from United States pharmacy, Betnovate use, but scheduled an official visit for the UCLA game September 12th. The Vols will have to overcome USC here as well, Betnovate mg, Where can i buy cheapest Betnovate online, as Prater is taking an official to Los Angeles the weekend before he comes to Knoxville. Hopefully he remembers how much we want him to bring back the "WR U" title to Knoxville.
Finally, and this will make perfect sense if you've vacationed to Gulf Shores before: while I was there, I saw SEC apparel of every kind - hats, visors, drink coozies, shirts, license plates, car flags, towels, tents, car bumper stickers, coolers, sandals and more, Betnovate For Sale. While the predominant schools represented were Alabama and Auburn, online buy Betnovate without a prescription, Betnovate for sale, I also saw folks sporting gear from LSU, the Mississippi schools, order Betnovate no prescription, Japan, craiglist, ebay, overseas, paypal, Georgia, Florida, is Betnovate addictive, Betnovate reviews, one here or there from Arkansas and South Carolina. I even had a couple of fellow Vols come and ask me about Lane and the upcoming season.
Call it the Gulf Shores factor, kjøpe Betnovate på nett, köpa Betnovate online. Betnovate coupon, If you've never been, you probably think it's irrelevant, fast shipping Betnovate, Purchase Betnovate for sale, but if you have spent some time down there, you know what I'm talking about, buy Betnovate without a prescription. Buy no prescription Betnovate online, And obviously with it being August already, it reminds you that another Fall in the South is just around the corner.
Now to my quick thoughts about the upcoming camp, Betnovate treatment, Where can i cheapest Betnovate online, as Joel at Rocky Top Talk pointed out yesterday, everybody does lists about these types of things, which I have to say was my exact plan. But I'll hold off from those and share some thoughts I have and what I'll be keeping and eye and ear on the next few weeks...
Betnovate For Sale, Obviously, everybody is going to be all over the quarterback competition between Jonathan Crompton and Nick Stephens, who was injured for spring camp. Everybody seems to think it's Crompton's job to lose at this point, but I wouldn't count out Stephens. We tend to forget that Lane Kiffin and Jim Chaney never actually did name a starter in spring. With how bad the quarterback position was last year in the Dave Clawson offense, we will all be seeing how these two guys and new face Nick Lamaison, who might redshirt since he just got on campus a short while ago, do in practice and intrasquad scrimmages.
Another storyline is the incoming group of freshman and how they will impact the position battles that are always headlining fall camps around the nation. Obviously Bryce Brown is the most likely candidate to make the quickest impact, but others could as well:
- Wide receivers: With the recent run of injuries at the spot, Nu'keese Richardson and fellow wideouts Zach Rogers and Marsalis Teague may get an increased number of reps in practice and may need to step up to help Tennessee's passing game, Betnovate For Sale. Hopefully James Green makes it past the NCAA Clearinghouse, but of the three question marks, Green's the least likely to make it in from what I've read.
- Secondary: The possible contributors here include Janzen Jackson, Darren Myles, Nyshier Oliver, Eric Gordon and Mike Edwards (if he gets everything cleared academically with the NCAA Clearinghouse). Note that I listed them in the likelihood I think they may contribute.
- Linebackers: Outside of Rico McCoy at one of the outside linebacker spots, the other two linebacker positions are still a little up in the air, meaning one of the new guys may come in and stake a claim to a starting spot or significant playing time to add depth. These guys include Jerod Askew, Greg King, Robert Nelson and Nigel Mitchell-Thornton. Nick Reviez and LaMarcus Thompson were the other starters coming out of spring, but will they hold those spots?
- Defensive line: Tackle Montori Hughes will likely be the third guy in the DT rotation, and may be forced to start if Wes Brown's knees continue to hamper him. Rae Sykes and Marlon Walls Betnovate For Sale, , both prep school transfers, also look to add depth. Walls is the third guy who's seen questions surrounding his academics and getting past the Clearinghouse.
As Lane Kiffin said in his introductory press conference, every spot minus the safety spot occupied by Eric Berry was now open for competition, which will be a staple this August. Pete Carroll built the USC dynasty based heavily on competition (and recruiting the nation's best players) at anything and everything, something that I'm sure Lane and Coach O have brought with them to Knoxville from their days building that juggernaut.
Finally, we absolutely must stay healthy. Our luck has already taken a bad twist with the season-injuries to Toney Williams (knee) and Austin Rogers (knee), the broken foot of Denarius Moore and the slowed recoveries of Gerald Jones (wrist) and Wes Brown (both knees). The talent level of this group is still a little cloudy (did the previous coaching staff not recruit talent or just not coach them?), but the lack of depth is not debatable. In other words, there is hardly any depth on this team. So the best injury news this August will be no injury news...
Images Courtesy of: Amy Smotherman Burgess / Knoxville News-Sentinel • Saul Young / Knoxville News Sentinel.
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This Week's Roundtable is hosted by: 3rd Saturday in Blogtober
1) We will start with an easy one. Last week, our beloved Rock was relocated across the street to make room for a new building on campus. What are your thoughts on the Rock’s relocation?
HSH: Being a student, I actually have the slight advantage of seeing the change. I drove by as the crane was lifting the behemoth out of the ground, Hydrochlorothiazide class, and I've only seen it once since it's been moved. I have to say it's going be to a little odd driving through the stoplight next to Stokely Athletic Center and the Thornton Athletic Student Center (where all the UT athletes get their school on), looking to my left and not seeing the Rock. It might take a little bit of time to get used the change come the fall.
For me, it's just another aspect of a common theme of my years here as a student. Here's what's changed or been built since I came to Knoxville in the fall of 2006: all the recent renovations to Neyland Stadium, the makeover of Thompson-Boling Arena, buy Hydrochlorothiazide no prescription, Pratt Pavilion, a new soccer stadium, a new softball stadium, Order Hydrochlorothiazide no prescription, the brand new aquatic center.
And that's just the changes on the athletics side of campus. There's also been the total change in the old Glocker Building, which has now become Haslam Business Building where all the business majors do their thing. The Baker Policy Center was risen up on the corner of Cumberland Avenue and 17th Street, replacing the parking lot where my family parked for every game I came to up until I graduated from high school. Those are two major projects, that I've seen started and completed in my days as a student, Hydrochlorothiazide price, coupon.
Back to the Rock, my only contact with actually came before I was officially enrolled. I had two of the more enthusiastic Orientation leaders, and late one night during the two-day event we got together and painted the thing. I would have visual evidence to prove it, Hydrochlorothiazide dangers, but my computer erased my hard drive awhile, thus I have nothing...
Lawvol: First of all, I am glad that the Rock did not unceremoniously disappear from campus as a result of the new Student Health Center that is being constructed. The worst thing imaginable would have been for the university to simply blow the thing up or what have you and cart it off. I realize the process of relocating the Rock was both onerous and expensive, but I have to give a little credit to university administration (a/k/a “The Big Orange Screw”) for making the right call and preserving this tradition for future generations.
All that said, Hydrochlorothiazide from mexico, the last time I painted the Rock was 1997. I say “painted”—my involvement actually centered more on leaning up against the Rock in a near catatonic state as drool fell from my gaping mouth and I uttered various slurred obscenities at my cohorts. You see, I was completely pissed drunk overcome by a multitude of circumstances at the time and my recollection of that particular evening of frivolity is fuzzy to say the least. Still, the Rock does have a special place in my mind due to its tradition of announcing great events, Order Hydrochlorothiazide from United States pharmacy, lurid innuendo, and Gameday proclamations. Considering it is directly across the street from where it used to be located, I doubt there will really be all that much difference.
Of course, I do wonder whether some students may be confused by the relocation—in particular, those suffering from the same … mental confusion … that afflicted me the last time I painted the Rock. If so, where can i find Hydrochlorothiazide online, the university may be faced with a long road of maintenance as the drunken masses repeatedly paint the front of the new Student Health Center.
2a) Wednesday is the beginning of SEC Media Days in Birmingham, which usually signifies that the season is just around the corner. What would you prefer that Coach Lane Kiffin do this week: Speak up or shut up?
HSH: I think Lane will be on his guard this week, Australia, uk, us, usa, as I'm sure he—and everyone else—expects some media members to try and force him into conflict or a mistake. I want to hear him talk about his football team more than anything, as it's getting awfully close to nut-cutting time.
But if he does indeed have a verbal jab in him, I hope he goes after Nick Saban at Alabama. For two reasons: first, I just don't like Alabama. Second, is Hydrochlorothiazide safe, someone needs to bring up the whole issue with Bammer telling some upperclassmen who "don't fit the system" to hit the road to make room for the incoming freshman class and make it under the 85 scholarship limit.
Lawvol: Buy Hydrochlorothiazide Without Prescription, Frankly, it wouldn’t hurt my feelings if Kiffin walked in and did nothing but scream “Wild Boyz!” for an hour or so.
Okay, I might be overstating that just a bit.
Either way, Taking Hydrochlorothiazide, I am sure that the Blackjack General will be on his best behavior and on top of his game. Kiffin seems to have a real knack for working the media. The only down side is that they sometimes seem to have a knack for working him. I am sure he will get a few pointed and loaded questions which will lead to some interesting sound bites after the fact. Still, I have full confidence in the man in charge of the Tennessee Football program and am sure that he will represent us all well.
Speaking of SEC Media Days, I want to personally give a shout out to Joel from RTT for managing to score press credentials for the SEC’s annual Love-in. Nice to finally begin seeing bloggers represented at these sorts of events. Now, I just have to figure out what I need to do to score some of those for myself…
2b) If you could take back one thing that Coach Kiffin has done or said to this point, Hydrochlorothiazide gel, ointment, cream, pill, spray, continuous-release, extended-release, what would it be?
HSH: Nothing. Was falsely calling Urban Meyer a cheater smart? Probably not, but most of that was drug out and blown out of proportion. The secondary violations? Harmless. Who cares about getting those? I think most of us would agree that Tennessee's football program had gotten stale, and Lane and Co. Low dose Hydrochlorothiazide, brought some flair, by hiring Monte Kiffin and Coach O, stealing some players on and after Signing Day, and ruffling feathers. I think he's definitely got the fanbase excited about this season at least.
However, purchase Hydrochlorothiazide, I do just wish he would have recruited a quarterback by now...
Lawvol: Hmmm… You know, the lawyer in me understands the need to manage public relations and to be careful when making public statements. The fan in me, however, loves seeing the Tennessee staff mix it up with all the so-called powers that be. On the whole, Tennessee took a lot of guff from a lot of people over the last decade or so. I’m not trying to criticize the Great Punkin for being a nice guy and trying to stay above the fray or anything like that. Still, I imagine that even he got tired of having to hear all the crap that spewed from the mouths of so many—I know I did, Buy Hydrochlorothiazide Without Prescription.
Thus, I am pretty much okay with Kiffin’s statements so far. In hindsight, Cheap Hydrochlorothiazide no rx, would I add a small clarification here or there; would I re-phrase a few things; would I make sure that I knew whose cameras were running before speaking? Sure, I’d do all those things. This, however, is football not a trial by jury. Thus, I say let it fly, buy Hydrochlorothiazide online no prescription.
3) The biggest news of last week on the football front was that seemingly our entire receiving corps is in the infirmary. Austin Rogers is lost for the year, Denarius Moore is going to miss several games at a minimum, and Gerald Jones has an injured wing that may cause him to miss some games. Although it seems like it is time to hit the panic button, Hydrochlorothiazide alternatives, is there a way out of this for the Vols?
HSH: I asked my closest inside source about the injuries and he said both Moore and Jones were still at workouts and didn't seem too bad. I think Gerald Jones will at least be ready for Western Kentucky, although I'm not sure that if he's not 100% that you don't keep him out of that game. Losing Moore hurts because he was the deep threat and Rogers is the type willing to take a shot over the middle on third down. However, I don't think we should start panicking yet. Why.
Because I expect Tennessee to run the ball early, often, about Hydrochlorothiazide, well, and consistently. Seriously, what's the one position everyone isn't concerned about in terms of talent or depth? Running back. Granted, Where can i cheapest Hydrochlorothiazide online, the departure of Lennon Creer and injury to Toney Williams limited those expectations, but Tennessee should be OK with a healthy Montario Hardesty, Bryce Brown and Tauren Poole. Sure, those last two guys don't have that many carries between them, but count me in the group that feels confident they can get it done, Hydrochlorothiazide blogs.
Lawvol: There is still a fair amount of time before the season starts, so I am not exactly in panic mode, but even I will admit that the injuries are concerning. Still, Order Hydrochlorothiazide online c.o.d, as HSH points out above, we have more horses in the stable with real experience if less than awe-inspiring numbers. Furthermore, we have a couple of key freshmen who—if they are ready—could use this opportunity to step-up and fill the void. Finally, there is always the option of re-tasking folks to play the role of receiver. That sort of thing might fit quite nicely into the recently announced campaign to promote Eric Berry’s Heisman Trophy candidacy, very nice indeed, real brand Hydrochlorothiazide online. Buy Hydrochlorothiazide Without Prescription, Given the fact that we look to be a run-oriented offense, I am not exactly ready to run screaming from the room in uncontrolled fits of hysteria, but I am sincerely hoping that we hear a little good news on this front in the near future. On the whole, though I am less concerned about the receivers than I am about the quarterback throwing to them.
4) Basketball recruit Josh Selby decommitted from the Vols over the weekend, and many suspect it is because he wants to play for a Nike school. Tennessee is an Adidas school, Hydrochlorothiazide mg, and there is speculation that future sponsorship money with Nike may be at stake if Selby doesn’t go to a Nike school like Kentucky. This obviously has ramifications in all sports, so what do you make of all this. (NOTE: The NFL is a Reebok league, which is owned by Adidas.)
HSH: I have friends of mine that insist Tennessee would become the next USC in every sport if they just switched to Nike or Under Armour. I always say that I don't want players who are caught up in the gear they'll get (they'll be getting so much free gear anyways, buy no prescription Hydrochlorothiazide online, so it shouldn't matter). And I always use the argument that it has no impact what brand name apparel you wear. It has no effect on your performance.
As Lane Kiffin said in Tuesday's press conference when asked about the hotly-debated black jersey issue, your jersey or the brand logo on it has no effect. If Tennessee's winning SEC and national titles, we could wear pink and be sponsored by Hanes for all I care. When I go play pick-up basketball games at T-RECS, whether or not I wear my dry-fit Nike shirts as opposed to Under Armour gear or a plain t-shirt has no effect on how well I shoot the 3 or whether I can dunk on anybody, Buy Hydrochlorothiazide Without Prescription.
OK, end of rant. But I will say this: if Tennessee does indeed switch apparel sponsors, Buy Hydrochlorothiazide from mexico, I want Under Armour, for two reasons: first, to screw Nike, and two, because I just plain like it more. You might say they would mess with the classic Tennessee look too much (like they did with South Carolina), purchase Hydrochlorothiazide online, but Auburn switched from Russell Athletic to UA and their unis didn't change at all, and still look classic and look sleek.
Lawvol: Okay, Fast shipping Hydrochlorothiazide, this is a sore spot of mine, and this is a bit of a rant (you’ve been warned) but it is directed more toward Nike than it is toward Selby. I can sum it up in three simple words:
I hate Nike…
I absolutely abhor what Nike and its founder, Phil Knight, have done to sports over the last quarter century. Though my hubris toward Nike first formed in the mid-1980s, I became an unwavering anti-Nike critic after reading Sports Illustrated’s 1993 article on Knight entitled “Triumph of the Swoosh” (this is a really good article by Donald Katz, Hydrochlorothiazide dose, and I highly recommend it despite its length).
In this article, Katz recounts, Hydrochlorothiazide pictures, among other things, the sordid tale of the medal uniforms controversy which arose with the dream team at the 1992 Olympics and the near-stranglehold that Nike possessed in the early 1990s. While I respect Knight’s dedication to the ideal of creating a sports apparel and marketing powerhouse out of nothing, I blame Nike and Knight for so much of what is wrong with sports today. I am proud to say that, I own not a single item of Nike manufactured apparel and have not knowingly purchased anything produced by Nike since 1994.
It was Nike who forever changed the face of sports by transforming athletics into a media circus—converting sports into little more than another form of Hollywood-style entertainment. In fact Nike’s own goal was to become an experience and entertainment corporation, herbal Hydrochlorothiazide, that just happened to be grounded in the worldwide fascination with sports. It was Nike who—via its marketing machine—transformed the landscape of professional sports by making sports heroes into demigod-like icons who were as untouchable as they were unreal. Nike is all about image…
…that and big piles of money.
The problem is that Nike singlehandedly transformed the sports endorsement world by changing athletes from being spokespersons into carefully crafted and manicured corporate assets. Nike was the first to “buy” athletes. After that came teams. Since the mid-1990s, it has been schools. Buy Hydrochlorothiazide Without Prescription, When I arrived at Tennessee as a student, the football program was sponsored by Nike. Fortunately, in 1998 the entire athletic department entered into a global equipment and apparel contract with Adidas. Since that time, Tennessee has stood apart from the machine that is the Nike image.
From an aesthetic perspective, Hydrochlorothiazide forum, I personally think that the Adidas-branded apparel that has graced the backs of both the Vols and Lady Vols for the past decade has been great. I like the “Adidas look,” but I will be the first to admit that such assessments are a matter of personal opinion and that I have no monopoly on determining “what looks cool.” That said, I am proud of Tennessee for not being another sheep in Nike’s fold, one which is forever beholden to the Nike power structure and its power to make or break an athlete, a team, comprar en línea Hydrochlorothiazide, comprar Hydrochlorothiazide baratos, or a school.
In 1986 Knight publicly declared that his goal was to become “the IBM of the sports-apparel industry” by 1991. There really is no point in arguing with whether he achieved his goal. In 2008 alone, Nike converted $ 18.6 billion in revenue into almost $ 8.4 billion in profits. It is hard to fight such a behemoth. Most fall in line with Nike’s aggressive school of thought that the world can be conquered. Hydrochlorothiazide no prescription, I admire Nike’s drive, but in the process of becoming the dominant sports apparel company that it is, it has completely—and I would contend irreparably—damaged sports by converting it into little more than a commercial engine. That engine is driven by the athletes, teams, and institutions in the Nike stable and is fueled by the hopes and dreams of everyday sports fans to get just a bit closer to the their heroes or their favorite team. Where this gets troubling is when the image becomes more important than the sport, kjøpe Hydrochlorothiazide på nett, köpa Hydrochlorothiazide online, when the money to be made controls the game.
I am but one small voice of dissent in a Nike-inspired, Nike-controlled, Hydrochlorothiazide online cod, and Nike-orchestrated world, but my conscience will not permit me to be otherwise.
Fortunately, Nike is not the only face in the world of sports now. Though there have always been competitors seeking to erode Nike’s dominance, the reality is that until the last decade there were no legitimate contenders. Now, at least there are faces like upstart Under Armor, Hydrochlorothiazide treatment, and the reinvigorated Adidas / Reebok. Still, Nike’s dominance is secure for now. I, however, Online Hydrochlorothiazide without a prescription, am hopeful that, Phil Knight’s megalomaniacal goal of being the IBM of sports is an instructive omen. If Big Blue can fall from its pedestal of preeminence—rejoining the world of mere mortals—so too can the swoosh come crashing back down to earth.
For now, however, we all must accept the reality that as long as the Nike juggernaut is in control, we will continue to see athletes make decisions based solely on the whims of sports-apparel executives in Beaverton, Oregon. It is sad and, in my opinion, it is deplorable. It is deplorable not because a player, such as Josh Selby, wants to do what is best for his playing career, but because Nike is all too willing to flex its muscle to control the decisions made by athletes, fans, and the general public. Some would say that is simply smart marketing. In my opinion, however, there is a line—one which Nike crossed long ago, Buy Hydrochlorothiazide Without Prescription.
"Michael Jordan without Nike [wouldn’t] mean anything."
Thus, I am disheartened to hear that Selby has decided to de-commit from the BasketVols. I hope he made that decision based upon concerns tied to him being in the best environment, being comfortable, Hydrochlorothiazide photos, and being successful. I hope it was not a decision based solely upon what sports-apparel logo appears on his uniform, as many have suggested. Such a decision would not, however surprise me. Either way, Hydrochlorothiazide used for, I do wish him all the best.
Nonetheless, I want to encourage the University of Tennessee, the UT Athletic Department, and Mike Hamilton to stay on the outside of the Nike machine. Regardless of who provides the Vols with their orange, buy Hydrochlorothiazide without prescription, from my perspective, any company is preferable to Nike. Were Tennessee to affiliate with Nike, I would not buy “official” apparel any longer.
More important than a single fan resisting the urge to spend money on clothing, however, is the “soul” of the program. Once you are with Nike, you are bought and paid for. Once that occurs, you might as well become “Nike State University at Knoxville.” All assets that can be purchased can be expended and thrown away. Phil Knight was once quoted as saying that “Michael Jordan without Nike [wouldn’t] mean anything”
I doubt he would have a different opinion about the Tennessee Volunteers…
The Rest of the Roundtable:
Having wasted your time on my largely meaningless and insignificant thoughts for this week, go check out what the other roundtablers (who actually know what they are talking about) have to say (in no particular order):
Also be sure to check out the round-up over at 3SIB later this week...
Image(s) Courtesy of: What's On the Rock / TwitPic • SI.com || Statement on Fair Use.
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The 2009 Orange and White game has come and gone and now we have a little bit of an idea of what we should expect from the Tennessee Volunteers this fall. It was less than exciting—as most scrimmages are—but showed a brief glimpse of the 2009 Vols and what is on the horizon for Tennessee fans and haters alike.
Cephalexin For Sale, On the whole, it looked pretty good…
I was unable to attend the game in person, but got a chance to catch some of the replay on SportSouth last night. If you missed it, GVX now has a play-by-lay recap posted (HT: RTT). On the whole there were some nice things shown, as well as some areas that need a little improvement.
Here are my thoughts in semi-stream of consciousness mode:
First, the running game looks strong. Montario Hardesty, Toney Williams, and Taurean Poole all looked solid running behind the offensive line. The run game was quick and crisp and seemed to have far more of a “north-south” orientation than it has in years past. The addition of incoming freshmen Bryce Brown and David Oku this fall should only improve this squad. Runningbacks coach Eddie Gran will have a very deep pool of talent with which to work, which is nice for a change. At this point, it seems likely that Tennessee’s primary offensive attack will come on the ground. After the 2008 campaign, I’m just glad that there is a primary offensive attack.
Second, the secondary—led by All-world Eric Berry at safety—appeared ready to be Tennessee’s lead squad of playmakers. While I realize that this was little more than a spring scrimmage, it seems possible that the Vols secondary this fall could be one of the best ever to wear the orange. That said, it seemed that the backs were playing a little soft either due to the scrimmage environment or due to their being in the process of learning the Full Monte’s new system.
Third, the offensive line looked good at run blocking, but less so when it came time for the pass. It would be nice to see improvement on pass blocking since our quarterback play is “average” at best at the moment. The offensive line must find ways to give the quarterbacks a little time to throw, lest the Vols become a one-directional run-only offense. Still, on the whole, it appears that there is the making of a strong unit.
Fourth, the defensive line—especially when paired with the strength of the secondary—looks tough. This line has clearly bought-in to a more aggressive style of play. This is refreshing, and could be extremely impressive if the linemen continue to work on making smart decisions when it comes to attacking. Still, at this point the d-line—especially Chris Walker and Montori Hughes—looks solid.
Fifth, the receiving corps, seemed more than capable to get open, make the catch, and add yards after the fact. Gerald Jones and Quintin Hancock looked particularly solid. The addition of Denarius Moore and Brandon Warren as third and fourth options further bolster this group. At this early point, Jones appears to be the top receiver, but fortunately there is more than one target.
Sixth, the quarterbacks continue to look fairly erratic. This does not really surprise me (or anyone else for that matter, I imagine) after the disastrous quarterback play seen in 2008. It appears that Jonathan Crompton is the likely starter, but that might change considering that Nick Stephens was plagued by wrist problems throughout the spring. The addition of 23 year-old quarterback Mike Rozier, who has been playing pitcher in the Boston Red Sox for the past several years, might change that dynamic a bit, but considering he will be coming in green (with four years of eligibility), it seems unlikely that he will immediately rocket to the top. Stranger things, however, have happened. One way or the other, it seems apparent that the pass game will be as simple and as error-free as possible. “Keep it simple, keep it clean” seems to be the mantra. If the quarterbacks can accomplish this, then they might just do okay.
Finally, the special teams, are a bit of a question in my mind. Punter Chad Cunningham was more than capable, but kicker Daniel Lincoln continued his slide by missing a makeable field goal. This team is likely to need field goals a fair amount this fall, thus this is quite concerning. Hopefully, Lincoln will find his range from 2007 again and return to form. If not, his inconsistency could spell trouble for the Vols in tight games.
In the end, this team is a work in progress. They are unlikely to be world-beaters this fall, but do appear to be in position to lay a solid foundation on which to build for the future. Furthermore, as they become more and more familiar with Lane Kiffin’s new system things should become more automatic and more graceful. More importantly, both the players and the coaches looked as if they were actually enjoying themselves. As an outsider, it seemed that the team as a whole likes the course that the “Kiffin Chimera” has set.
On the whole, I am encouraged by what I saw and how the Vols performed. Will this team win the SEC East in 2009? Not likely, but possible. Will they finish at the bottom? Doubtful. The real question is how they will do in tight games. If they fold, then the Vols can expect at least three or four losses. If they rise to the occasion … well … they might just surprise a few people.
Either way, I am already looking forward to the 5 September kickoff…
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You know, improvement is a funny thing…
Sometimes you have to take a step or two backwards before you can begin moving forwards. This weekend we saw a little of both—improvement and stepping backwards. Either way, it was a win—a really, really, ugly win, but a win nonetheless.
Now that I am finally feeling a bit better physically—having shucked the plague I had for the better part of last week—here are a few random thoughts on the Vols’ play against Northern Illinois.
Nick Stephens:[caption id="" align="alignright" width="176" caption="Stephens looked capable in his first start."][/caption]
Well, Nick Stephens isn’t going to win All-America or All-SEC honors this year, but what he showed as the starting quarterback this weekend was heartening. First, he showed focus at all times. While he did make a few first-start gaffs, on the whole his head was in the game the entire time. Second, he showed heart and determination. There was never a moment when he seemed to simply be going through the motions. In short, this game really mattered to him.
Stephens will only improve as he starts getting all of snaps in practice with the first team. So long as he does not become complacent, he can really help improve the offense. Fundamentals are the key to success and it seemed Stephens was focusing on the basics in his play versus the Huskies—nothing flashy, nothing unusual, just clean snaps, clean handoffs, clean passes. He also showed something that has not been seen since Erik Ainge played his last down in January—a long-ball threat with reliable accuracy. That could really come in handy down the road.
In summary, Stephens did not wow me with his playmaking abilities—which is good. He did his job, played his role, played within his abilities, and apparently impressed some of his teammates with his focus and determination. He smartly decided to save the swagger until he has earned the right to strut. More importantly, he showed that he deserves to be the one and only quarterback for the foreseeable future. Nice game, Nick, keep up the good work.
Now why is it again he didn’t come in against Auburn? Never mind, don’t answer that question…
Well, from a “style” perspective, it was hardly their best game of the season, but it was by no means a poor showing by the Tennessee defensive unit. In fact, as has been the case in every game this season—the defense did enough to win the game. While the Northern Illinois receivers did seem to find more room for catches than they should have, and the defensive line was not dominated by the Vols, in the end they did what they had to do. They did not allow a touchdown—and have only allowed a single touchdown in two games. They held Northern Illinois to 190 total yards (72 rushing / 118 passing) and they did their job.
Again, Nevin McKenzie, Rico McCoy, and Eric Berry seemed to be everywhere on the field on defense combining for 23 tackles (McKenzie-9, McCoy-8, Berry-6), and Berry made another gamebreaking play with a 48 yard interception return which put the Vols in position to score a field goal in the second quarter.
The defense has proven that it can be depended upon…
The offensive line continues to leave me scratching my head…
The offensive line continues to allow penetration far more often than they should. I realize that Erik Ainge—who was more than willing to dump the ball into the seats if he felt pressure—is no longer calling the signals, but this offensive line should not be allowing defenders to harass the quarterback the way they do. This line is too strong, too fast, too talented, and too experienced for this sort play. I understand that this is not the same team as last year, but the level of play from this squad has been severely lacking this year. Their poor play allowed the sack and fumble at just under 4:00 mark in the third quarter.
If Nick Stephens is going to have a chance to get the offense going, then the offensive line is going to have to do their jobs and protect the quarterback…
The running game—which looked so promising earlier in the season—apparently did not dress out for this weekend’s game. Tennessee racked up a net of 69 yards on 32 rushing attempts (2.15 avg per carry). While Arian Foster managed 76 total yards, neither he nor Montario Hardesty really managed to run the ball effectively. It was disappointing that Lennon Creer did not get any carries.
The receiving corps did enough to win, but not much more. Denarius Moore, however, had a nice showing with 3 catches for 65 yards and a touchdown. As with the running backs, this unit needs to work a little harder to give their new quarterback some bigger more effective targets throughout the game.
More importantly, when the ball gets thrown to them, it would be most helpful if they would catch it…
I’ll give the coaching staff—most notably the Great Punkin and Dave Clawson—a little credit for making the call to give Stephens the start. I just wish they had reached this decision a little sooner. To the extent that Mike Hamilton had anything to do with this, I’ll give him credit too. Still, the offense continues to look ragged, even with the quarterback change. This unit simply has to improve or the upcoming contests against the Georgia Bulldogs and Alabama Crimson Tide are going to be long, hateful, and humiliating experiences.
Furthermore, it is high time for every position to be up for grabs…
On the defensive side of the ball, while—like many—I do not always agree with some of the defensive play calling, it is hard to criticize a unit which seems to play together as well as the defensive squad does, especially in the face of such poor performances by the offense.
This game was not pretty. It was ugly. It was much closer than it should have been. It was a nail-biter that never should have been. That said, it is a win. It is a step forward toward improvement. I personally think that the decision to give Stephens the start was what made that happen. Hopefully, that is not the only change the we on-lookers will see going forward. While this game is hardly one for the ages, it is a building block which can serve as a step toward salvaging the remainder of the season.
Oh yeah, and in case you didn’t notice, none of the remaining games look the slightest bit easy…
If this team and this coaching staff are going to try and make something of this season, then they are going to have to earn it. With an undefeated Vanderbilt, a Kentucky team that lost to Alabama by three points, and a South Carolina team which won a tough game versus Ole Miss, there are no sure-thing wins left in this season. Of course, I am ignoring Georgia and Alabama because … well … I think those sort of speak for themselves. Unlike some, I am not ready to say this team is doomed, but I will say it will be an uphill battle. I have no doubt that this team has the skills and the players to win, I simply do not know if they will manage to do it. I hope so.
All I can say is that, after this weekend and the performance of the new starting quarterback, at least I believe it is possible—probably not likely, but possible—which is an improvement over last week. It’s not much, but at least it’s something…