Vols' Jones Returns to Practice; Simms Mastering Sack-Taking

Vols got the day off to rest their weary bones. Vols scribes did not. Your round-up:

  • Gerald Jones returns to practice today with a splint on his hand. Splints are designed to immobilize injured body parts to facilitate healing; hands are prehensile appendages widely considered key to the catching of projectiles. Coach Dooley's waiting to see how this goes before clearing Jones for Saturday, but he has ruled out the senior reclaiming his punt return duties just yet. In other injury news, Cody Pope and and JerQuari Schofield are likely out this weekend. Tauren Poole, Art Evans, and Herman Lathers are day-to-day. As, to paraphrase Vin Scully, are we all.
  • Dooley says "about half" of the Vols heading to Baton Rouge will be making their first ever collegiate road trip. They have not been missing much -- even the seniors have seen only four road wins: Miss St. '07, Vandy '08, and Kentucky '07 and '09 (both in OT).
  • Matt Simms, described by Mark Wiedmer as an "offensive star," is excited about his first SEC road game because, as a Garden State native, he revels in "not being liked." Elsewhere, Simms reports that he has "mastered how to take a sack." Of such are stars made. Simms on his mastered art of sack-taking: "You can't really fight against it." Sadly true given his protection thus far.
  • John Adams fuels the Patrick Peterson panic attacks by reminding us all of the Brandon James and DeSean Jackson horror shows. How good is Peterson? Take it away, Coach Miles: "When he's hydrated, he's the best in the country, arguably." 
  • Fun with stats: The Vols clock in at 119th nationally in third-down conversions, 113th nationally in sacks allowed, 109th in kick-return average, 107th in punt-return average, and 3rd in number of freshman seeing playing time. LSU stands at 9th in total defense, 110th in total offense, and 115th in passing offense. A grand total of 120 teams compete in the Football Bowl Subdivision.
  • R.I.P. Emmon Love
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