As you may know, there are a couple of new rules for kickoffs this season, including that teams will be kicking off from the 35 yard line instead of the 30 and that players can only use five yards instead of 10 to get a running head start. How are teams going to react? Will they use the extra yardage to maximize the opportunity for safe touchbacks or will they roll the dice and try to turn it into an advantage by kicking to the corner and hoping to hold the returner to something less than the standard touchback start? Who knows?
But the Vols (and everyone else, surely) are thinking about it:
"I think the people who are smart are looking at it now," Coiner said. "Because yeah, everything if it has changed, it has changed something. You can't just say 'OK, we took a 10-yard start last year and now we'll just take a 5.' No. You've got to go back and look, how does that affect you. Every single rule change we have gone through once again, to coach Dooley's credit, we have examined it with a fine-tooth comb. How does that affect us? Hows does that affect them? How's that rule change on kickoff return going to affect our kickoff return? So I would say that yeah, the cat-and-mouse game has already started if you're smart. Because you're already designing what you're going to do based on the rule changes."
And whatever they're asking him to do, kicker Michael Palardy is apparently doing it, at least on kickoffs:
"He missed one, [but] guys, he's making a lot progress," Dooley said Saturday. "He's been money on kickoffs. He looks like a different guy out there, and it wasn't just moving him up five [yards]. "He's got a real confident approach, [and] he adjusted some things. The biggest thing we're ironing out on our field goals is that we've got a new snapper and a new holder, so there are a lot of nuances that can affect a kick. But he's having a good spring."
In other football stuff, John Adams isn't really buying that Tennessee will be much of a running team this fall. Three of UT's early enrollees have had rough starts to their Vol careers. Was Dooley's drama queen comment yesterday directed at Justin Hunter? And did Devrin Young run right through Tiny Richardson's giant tree trunk legs?
Link dumpage after the jump.
UT to cut 17 positions in athletics department " GoVolsXtra
Move comes amid merger of programs
Mike Strange: 'Meaningful' change for college football " GoVolsXtra
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — We sat and chewed the fat Monday, hitting on all the hot topics in college athletics.
Shekinna Stricklen, Glory Johnson among first four players drafted by WNBA " GoVolsXtra
Baugh, Cain also picked in WNBA draft
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