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Tennessee Continues To Address Trouble In The Trenches

  • The coaching staff continues to try to shore up the middle of the defensive line, now by looking to Minor Bowens, who left the team (more accurately, left Lane Kiffin) last year to throw the discus for the track team. Just how dire is the situation? Maybe even more so than you thought, because Tennessee's first four SEC games are against teams (Florida, LSU, Georgia, and Alabama) with excellent, veteran offensive lines and an ability to run the ball. Yeah, that asphalt line is looking more and more like a reality as the days go by.
  • That's not to say we don't still have questions along the o-line, no sir, but it seems to be coming along. Cody Pope seems to have the center position locked down, especially with the move of Victor Thomas back to defensive tackle, and you have to like the sound of backup Darin Gooch, who's apparently an actual balloon, able to inflate or deflate on command and range in weight from 215 pounds to 305 pounds. I mean come on, a center named Gooch from Butte? It's destiny.
  • The team took calls from the sidelines for the first time yesterday and, as you'd imagine, made several mistakes throughout the day. Dooley says they need to learn to problem solve on their own. They'll get another chance today, as Dooley conducts a scrimmage-lite practice to break the monotony and provide an early look at what they need to focus on going forward:
    "It's just to get people lathered up," Dooley said. "Let's go tackle. Let's let them play a little bit. Then, it's a good time to catch our breath and evaluate where we are and where we need to go the next few days."
  • Dooley Comments Aug. 9 | UT Sports TV
    Tennessee head football coach Derek Dooley post-practice comments for August 9, 2010. [Ed. -- Includes the word "boom."]

  • Will's got #3 in his 10 Questions for 2010 series coming up at 8:00, so check back for that.