Quarterback Race Gets Underway on Rocky Top
Vols kicked off fall practice on Friday, and plenty of eyes will be on the quarterback race. Justin Worley and Nathan Peterman are the likely front-runners, but new head coach Butch Jones says someone will have to earn the job.
Butch Jones did not name a number one quarterback when he released the depth chart this week. And apparently he hid the chart from the QB’s. Said Worley,"I haven't seen the depth chart." Reporter-"Certainly you have heard about it." Said Worley,"No." Added Peterman,"You can't put too much weight on the depth chart wherever it goes. I don't think there's too much to it." Said Joines,"I've said it from day one, a depth chart in our program is irrelevant. All the depth chart means is who takes the first rep, and then it's up to everyone. I told everyone you are responsible for creating your own identity."
Freshmen quarterbacks Joshua Dobbs and Riley Ferguson will also be given a shot at the job. The newcomers were easy to spot in practice because Coach Jones made the freshmen wear black stripes on their helmets. "The freshmen quarterbacks will probably have limited reps starting off, so every rep is critical. Do something to catch the coaches eyes. But we're going to play the quarterback who can manage the game for us. Take care of the football for Tennessee and put us in the right situation. We expect our quarterback to be the alpha male of the offense."
And competition is usually what determines the Alpha Male. Said Worley,"Both Nathan and I played at a high level football, especially towards the end of spring. We were really pushing each other." Said Peterman,"Even if you were the back-up or the starter, things can change. Things are always subject to change. You have to approach evey day like you are going to give your best with a really hard work ethic. You're going to be the best in the country not just on the team."