With just a handful of days left before Tennessee’s season opening game against Georgia State, the Volunteers are dealing with another injury situation. Thankfully, this one sounds fairly minor. Senior linebacker Daniel Bituli has been absent from practice over the last few days, now we have an explanation as to why.
“We done a little procedure on him,” Pruitt told the media after practice on Friday. “Kind of cleaned his knee up a little bit. So he’ll be out anywhere between 10 and 17 days.”
Bituli is expected lead the defense from his middle linebacker position, likely starting alongside of freshman Henry To’oto’o. Following his knee procedure, his week one status is now in doubt.
“We did it in the early part of this week, just to alleviate some pain there,” Pruitt explained. Tennessee plays BYU during the following week, which will likely be a much stiffer test for the Vols.
Tennessee shifted freshman safety Aaron Beasley from a safety role to the linebacker spot this week, looking to get him some reps. On Thursday, Pruitt moved running back Jeremy Banks to the defensive side of the ball once again, just as he did last year. Banks will provide some depth at the linebacker position, at least for the next few weeks. With the emergence and hype around freshman running back Eric Gray, it will be interesting to see if Banks sticks on the defensive side this time around.