Tennessee didn’t get to enjoy spring football.
Let’s hope that doesn’t hold true for this fall.
The ‘Voice of the Vols’ Bob Kesling says the program has picked up some momentum with their winning record last year and some prize recruits.
Freshman quarterback Harrison Bailey hasn’t played a game for Tennessee, and he has barely practiced.
Yet he’s a fan favorite of Big Orange nation.
Said Kesling:”You know he’s much anticipated, but as we all know, the most popular player on most teams is the back-up quarterback. This is a very talented young man. There’s a lot of promise for him, but Jarrett Guarantano has played a lot of football at Tennessee. He’s a guy that’s a veteran. I don’t think he will give up his spot without a pretty good fight. If Guarantano is not the starting quarterback, that’s probably a good sign for Tennessee because somebody else has really stepped up.”
Kesling says the quarterback battle may not have been the top priority if spring ball had progressed as normal.
Said Kesling:”Well I think you had to look at play-makers. They lost some big time play-makers at the wide receiver corp when you look at Jauan Jennings and Marquez Callaway moving on, so you have to come up with a play-maker there, and then creating more turnovers on defense. That’s what Jeremy Pruitt always talks about. You can never have enough play-makers on both sides of the ball, and I think that’s what Tennessee is really trying to establish this spring.”
Perhaps the biggest relief for the Vols.
They finally have some offensive linemen aided by the return of Trey Smith.
Said Kesling:”Well you’ve got to go back to when Coach Pruitt came in. I think he had only four offensive lineman on the whole roster, and most football teams you need to have fifteen at least that to practice if nothing else. In this league you can’t win if you can’t play in the offensive and defensive lines. And I think Tennessee is in a position where they feel pretty good about the depth and quality they have on both sides of the ball.”
With the start Tennessee had last season, a third year for Jeremy Pruitt on Rocky Top didn’t look promising, but Pruitt and the Vols persevered.
Said Kesling:”Jeremy Pruitt is still learning his way a little bit. I think Pruitt took a big step last year in becoming that head coach, so I think he has really grown into the role. I think you are going to see now that he is going to start taking big steps towards being one of the top coaches in this league.”