Vols Go Full Throttle For First Spring Scrimmage at Neyland Stadium

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(utsports.com) KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – Tennessee football made its first appearance in Neyland Stadium this spring under new head coach Josh Heupel as the Volunteers went through a 100-play live scrimmage and capped Thursday working goal line situations.

Sophomore Harrison Bailey, senior Hendon Hooker and sophomore Brian Maurer all took snaps under center.

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“The guys had a ton of energy and made a bunch of plays on both sides of the football,” Heupel said. “I thought we did a great job of getting into a rhythm, creating some big plays and operating really efficiently with our tempo and our ball mechanics. I thought the quarterbacks did a good job of handling all those things really well throughout the day. We played error-free for the most part.

“Today was a full throttle tackle for 85 percent of the scrimmage. There were some situations with the third group where we played thud at the end of it just based on the play count and trying to keep guys healthy at the very end of it.”

Tennessee returns to the practice field at 10 a.m. Saturday with a free open practice to the public. All fans should enter through Gate 21, and the game day clear bag policy will be in effect. Gate 21 will open beginning at 9:15 a.m. Saturday. Ongoing COVID-19 protocols will be in effect, including face coverings upon entry and movement through the stadium upon entry. Physical distancing in the lower bowl of Neyland Stadium will be enforced.

Should inclement weather move the practice indoors, Saturday’s practice would be closed to the public. Follow @Vol_Football for more information.

“It gives us an opportunity to go showcase in front of our fans and in front of this state who and what we are at this point,” Heupel said.

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Rick Nyman grew up in Anniston, Alabama and attended the University of Alabama. His television career started at WJSU-TV in Anniston where he had the opportunity to cover SEC football with Alabama and Auburn. Anniston is just 20 minutes from the Talladega Speedway, so NASCAR was a big part of his sports coverage. Due to this he was able to interview Davey Allison, Dale Earnhardt, Jeff Gordon, and several other top-name NASCAR drivers. Rick's next television job was in Savannah, Georgia, where he covered basketball player Kwame Brown (now with the Washington Wizards), who later became the first ever high school player selected as the top pick in the NBA draft. He covered the PGA Tour's annual swing thru Hilton Head and also had the opportunity of covering the Atlanta Falcons Super Bowl appearance in 1999 in Miami. Rick especially enjoys all the atmosphere, tradition and drama of college football. He also likes profiling sports personalities and learning what drives them both on and off the field. If he's not covering sports, he's either watching Seinfield or David Letterman, playing golf, reading, or working out. What he enjoys about Chattanooga is the passion people have for sports. The mountainous region of Chattanooga reminds him of his hometown of Anniston, which also has big, beautiful trees and plenty of hills. You can contact Rick at rnyman@wdef.com.