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Chiefs GM: Berry Going To Conquer It

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Image result for Eric Berry chiefs smile
Kevin Patra of NFL.com wrote an article on Wednesday detailing a SiriusXM interview with Chiefs general manager John Dorsey, who said that he has spoken to safety Eric Berry, and he is doing well. 

Here is the piece: 

Eric Berry's battle with Hodgkin lymphoma is going well, according to Kansas City Chiefs general manager John Dorsey.

"Well, anybody who knows Eric Berry knows that if there's a challenge presented to him, he will attack it with a vengeance," Dorsey told Sirius XM NFL Radio on Tuesday. "And he will do that. Everything that I have gotten back has been very positive. I have not spoken with him on the phone for probably six weeks, but I have texts. We communicated through texts. He's in good spirits, he's fine, he's driving, and he's going to conquer it."

Dorsey added that Berry is able to drive again, per host Alex Marvez.

The 26-year-old was diagnosed with Hodgkin lymphoma in December and while it's a treatable disease, his promising NFL career has been put on the back burner.

The general manager didn't give any football update on the safety, but that isn't a surprise. Berry's battle lies off the field and he has the clear support of the Chiefs franchise, which did not cut him this offseason just to save a couple of dollars.

Also, the Kansas City Star has this story: Chiefs say safety Eric Berry is positive about his recovery from cancer

Happy Birthday - March 26

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It's March 26 and we've got some 'happy birthday' wishes to a pair of UT freshman: David Heron of swimming and diving and Igor Smelyanski of men's tennis!

A redshirt freshman from Mission Viejo, California, Heron already ranks second all-time at UT in both the 1000-yard freestyle (9:04.34) and the 1650. In just his very first race of the 2014-15 season, he broke UNC Wilmington's 19-year-old-pool record by swimming a 9:11.21 in the 1000 Free. Heron is slated to compete this week in the 500 Free and 1650 Free at the NCAA Men's Swimming & Diving Championships in Iowa City, Iowa. His 500 prelim begins today (Thursday) at 12 p.m. ET with finals slated for tonight beginning at 8 p.m. Today is Heron's 20th birthday.

David Heron

Smelyanski, a native of Beer Yaaqov, Israel, is in the midst of his true freshman season with the men's tennis program at UT. Thus far he owns a singles record of 10-8 and a doubles mark of 10-5 -- a record that includes the 2014 Southern Intercollegiate Championship with teammate Andrew Dromsky. Before arriving on Rocky Top, Smelyanski achieved a career-high ATP ranking of 721 in singles and 808 in doubles. Those marks gave the Vols three active players with a tour ranking inside the top 900 to begin the year. He is 20 years old today. 

Igor Smelyanski

Happy birthday, David and Igor!

Thursday's Tennessee Football Briefing (3/26/15)

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Tennessee held its annual NFL Pro Day on Wednesday. Check out coverage: #VolReport: Vols Hold NFL Pro Day.

Here's a look at media coverage: 
- Knoxville News Sentinel: Coleman tries to carry torch
- Knoxville News Sentinel: Vols Pro Timing Day notes

Parker, Hardesty Named Assistant Coaches at Norfolk State University

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NORFOLK, Va. - Norfolk State University football coach Latrell Scott announced Wednesday three more additions to his coaching staff: quarterbacks coach Aaron Corp, offensive line coach Anthony Parker and running backs coach Montario Hardesty.
Corp comes to NSU from Scott's previous staff at Virginia State, while Parker arrives from a stint at the University of Tennessee and Hardesty from Chowan University. Scott also coached each of the three new additions in college during their highly distinguished playing careers at the Division I level.
Corp was quarterbacks coach last season under Scott at VSU, helping the Trojans finish 10-3 overall en route to the CIAA championship. VSU also advanced to the Division II playoffs for the first-time ever, winning a first-round game before falling in the second round. Trojan quarterbacks Tarian Ayres and Niko Johnson combined to pass for 2,270 yards and 15 touchdowns against just five interceptions. The duo also rushed for eight scores under Corp's guidance.
After an acclaimed high school career in Villa Park, Calif., that saw him earn numerous prep All-America accolades, Corp spent three seasons as a quarterback at Southern California (2007-09) before transferring to the University of Richmond for his final two years (2010-11). At USC, he redshirted in 2007 before appearing in five games as a freshman in 2008. He played in three games and started once in 2009 before transferring to Richmond.
At UR, Corp started 16 times in his two seasons. He started five times as a junior before sustaining a season-ending injury. As a senior in 2011, Corp started every game and passed for 2,682 yards and 17 touchdowns while completing 63.7 percent of his passes. He set an NCAA FCS single-game record for completion percentage, completing 31-of-34 (91.2 percent) against Towson.
A 2012 NFL Scouting Combine invitee, Corp had brief pro stints with the NFL's Buffalo Bills, Dallas Cowboys and Miami Dolphins. He earned his bachelor's degree from UR in interdisciplinary studies in 2012.

"Aaron is an extremely talented young coach," Scott said. "He has a great background and I'm excited about him coaching our quarterbacks."
Parker spent the last two seasons as an offensive quality control assistant at his alma mater, the University of Tennessee. Prior to his time on staff at UT, Parker served as an offensive graduate assistant at Mississippi State (2011-12) and Morgan State (2009-10). Parker coached on a pair of bowl teams at Mississippi State and helped UT reach the TaxSlayer Bowl after this past season.
Parker had a distinguished playing career for the Volunteers. He was a four-year letterman from 2005-08, playing in 44 career games with 39 starts on the offensive line, predominantly as a guard. He started his sophomore through senior seasons. Parker was a second-team Associated Press All-American as a junior in 2007. He also earned first-team All-SEC honors from both the league coaches and AP that year while helping the Volunteers reach the SEC Championship Game. Parker was also a second-team All-SEC selection as a senior in 2008.
Parker a native of Jonesboro, Ga., earned his bachelor's degree from in political science and sociology from Tennessee in 2008.
"Anthony is a dynamic young coach with a strong pedigree," Scott said. "He will relate will to our players in teaching fundamental football."
Hardesty served as an intern at Chowan last fall under the NFL Players Association internship program. Prior to Chowan, Hardesty had a successful career at UT that culminated in his selection by the Cleveland Browns in the second round of the 2010 NFL Draft.
Hardesty played at Tennessee from 2005-09. He rushed for 2,391 yards in his career, including 1,345 in All-SEC second-team campaign as a senior in 2009. Hardesty ranked fourth in the SEC and had the fourth-best season in terms of rushing yardage in school history that year, when he also scored 14 total touchdowns (13 rushing, one receiving).
Hardesty was drafted by Cleveland in 2010 and spent four seasons with the team. Injuries sidelined him for the 2010 and '13 seasons. He played in 23 games with the Browns in 2011 and 2012, compiling 537 rushing yards, 138 receiving yards and one touchdown.
A native of New Bern, N.C., Hardesty earned his bachelor's degree in sports management from Tennessee in 2009.
"Montario is another excellent young coach who brings a strong background to our program," Scott said. "His experience as a collegiate and pro player will also be beneficial for our players."

Happy Birthday - March 24

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It's March 24 and we've got four Big Orange birthdays to celebrate today on Rocky Top. Today we're sending 'happy birthday wishes' to incoming football freshman Darrell Taylor and sophomore wide receiver Josh Smith. We're also celebrating with a couple of Tennessee legends in recently graduated softball standout Raven Chavanne and the iconic Peyton Manning

Taylor, a defensive lineman, committed to Tennessee football last February out of Waverly, Virginia. He was rated a four-star recruit after earning second team all-state honors as a senior defensive end at Hopewell High School in 2014. He recorded 60 tackles, including 19.0 tackles for loss and 11 sacks during his senior campaign, not to mention two blocked field goals, three forced fumbles, and six passes defended. Taylor turns 18 years old today. 

A Knoxville native, Smith played only three games in 2014 before undergoing season-ending ankle surgery. He notched 10 catches for 135 yards, including a 40-yard touchdown reception at No. 4 Oklahoma in mid-September. Born this day in 1994, Smith is 21 years old today.

Chavanne wrapped up a stellar four-year playing career with Tennessee softball in 2013. A four-time All-American, Chavanne racked up 355 hits, 13 home runs, and 107 RBIs over three seasons on Rocky Top. She also notched 143 career stolen bases on 156 attempts. The Thousand Oaks, California, native closed her career as UT's all-time leader in batting average (.442), runs (244), stolen bases (143), and on-base percentage (.508).

Finally, today is the 39th birthday of Tennessee's most iconic figure in the legendary Peyton Manning. He finished his illustrious career in the Orange and White holding 42 NCAA, SEC, and Tennessee records while having won the Maxwell Award, the Davey O'Brien National Quarterback Award, the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award and Player of the Year honors after his senior season. Since then, he has become one of the most successful quarterbacks in NFL history and a face of the league.

Happy birthday, Darrell, Josh, Raven, and Peyton!

Tuesday's Tennessee Football Briefing (3/24/15)

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Team 119 will go through its first practice of Spring on Tuesday. The Vols hit Haslam Field around 4:20 p.m. Get the latest from Coach Butch Jones as he previewed Spring ball on Monday: Jones Pre-Spring Press Conference At Noon

Brian Rice took a look at how Jones has taken steps towards progress in his three years on Rocky Top: Culture & Identity The Key For Team 119.

Coverage from the media includes: 
- Knoxville News Sentinel: Jones hopes young guys are right guys
- Knoxville News Sentinel: Five and Five: Tennessee and the SEC East
- Knoxville News Sentinel: Jones: Dobbs becoming a 'CEO quarterback'

Happy Birthday - March 23

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We have four Big Orange birthdays to celebrate on this March 23rd as football's Jordan Williams, men's basketball's Braxton Bonds, soccer's Kiah Allen, and football VFL Carl Pickens are each blowing out the candles today. 

After a 2014 season that included a TaxSlayer Bowl win over Iowa, senior defensive lineman Williams concluded his career on Rocky Top. He started all 13 games during his final season, registering 27 tackles (four for loss) with two sacks and four pass break-ups. He had a career-high six tackles, including a sack, on Senior Night vs. No. 19 Missouri. He finishes his career with 66 total tackles, 6.5 sacks, and 10.5 tackles for loss. Williams was also a member of the 2013 and 2014 SEC Academic Honor Roll. 

A native of Nashville, Tennessee, Bonds redshirted the 2014-15 men's basketball season. The 6-1 guard played prep ball at Christ Presbyterian Academy under head coach Drew Maddux. He helped lead the team to a pair of state championships in 2012 and 2013 and was rated the No. 8 overall prospect in the state of Tennessee. During his senior season, he averaged 15.3 points and 7.8 assists per contest. Nephew of former MLB slugger Barry Bonds, Braxton Bonds turns 20 years old today.

Braxton  Bonds

Allen was a redshirt sophomore for Tennessee soccer this past fall, appearing in 16 matches for UT at defender. She notched one goal and two assists on the year -- scoring on a free kick during her first start against Tulsa in early September. She also successfully converted a penalty in a shootout against No. 8 Florida in the SEC Tournament. In all, Allen logged 833 minutes of action last season. Born this day in 1993, Allen turns 22 years old today.

Kiah Allen

VFL Pickens played wideout at UT from 1989-91, amassing 1,875 career receiving yards over those three seasons. As a junior in 1991, he caught 49 balls for 877 yards and five touchdowns, earning All-America recognition after leading the SEC in yards per game at 79.73. As a freshman, Pickens played both ways and had four interceptions in four games at free safety. He was even named the Defensive MVP of the 1990 Cotton Bowl. He opted to bypass his senior season on Rocky Top to enter the NFL Draft where was picked 31st overall by the Cincinnati Bengals. He was named the NFL Rookie of the Year in 1992 and in 1995 set the Bengals single-season record for receptions (99) and touchdown receptions (17).

Happy birthday, Jordan, Braxton, Kiah, and Carl!

Happy Birthday - March 22

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On March 22 we're celebrating the birthdays of soccer's Christine Creighton, rowing's Nikole Metz, and men's tennis legend Rhyne Williams

Creighton is a native of Haverhill, Florida, and recently completed her true freshman season with the Tennessee women's soccer program in 2014. She appeared in 16 matches on the season, logging three goals and one assist. Her first career goal came in the 40th minute of a home match against Mississippi State in late September. She is an elementary education major and turns 18 years old today.

Christine Creighton

Metz is a junior coxswain with the rowing program and is a native of Fayetteville, New York. This season she placed fourth at the Chattanooga Head Race in Women's College 4+ with a time of 18:52.3. The political science major began her collegiate rowing career at SMU before transferring to Rocky Top. She is 21 years old today.

Nikole Metz

Williams played varsity tennis for his hometown University of Tennessee from 2009-11, piecing together two of the best seasons in program history in 2010 and 2011. During those years, he captured consecutive All-America honors and earned the ITA's No. 1 ranking in 2011 en route to reaching the NCAA Singles Championships. He finished his career with a singles record of 83-17 and a doubles mark of 66-14. Williams now competes on the ATP World Tour. 

Happy birthday, Christine, Nikole, and Rhyne!

Happy Birthday - March 21

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It's the second day of spring and we've got a trio of Big Orange football birthdays to celebrate! Today we're sending 'happy birthday' wishes to sophomore wideout Josh Malone, sophomore offensive lineman Jashon Robertson, and junior offensive lineman Dylan Wiesman!

A native of Gallatin, Tennessee, Malone caught 23 passes for 231 yards and a touchdown during his freshman season on Rocky Top in 2014. He snagged his first career touchdown against No. 4 Alabama on a nine-yard pass from Joshua Dobbs. He recorded five catches for a season-high 75 yards at No. 3 Ole Miss in mid-October.

Robertson started all 13 games during his true freshman season, becoming the first Vol since current Miami Dolphin Ja'Wuan James 
to start on the offensive line in his first collegiate game. He was also the only member of UT's offensive line to start all 13 games at the same position (right guard). 

Wiesman is known as a versatile lineman who can play any position on the offensive line. He appeared in all 13 games in 2014 for UT, getting two starts along the way. A native of Cincinnati, Ohio, Wiesman served primarily as Mack Crowder's backup at center and earned his first collegiate start in place of Crowder in the Nov. 22 home-finale against Missouri. 

Dylan  Wiesman

Happy birthday, Josh, Jashon, and Dylan!

Happy Birthday - March 20

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On March 20 we're celebrating the birthdays of a pair of VFLs: Paul Annacone of men's tennis and Britton Colquitt of football. 

Annacone played three years of varsity tennis for the University of Tennessee from 1982-84. He was a three-time All-SEC and All-American performer for the Vols and was named the Intercollegiate Tennis Association Player of the Year in 1984. That year, he went 51-3 in singles matches while winning the ITA Indoor Singles Championship. He racked up 115 career victories for UT in his three seasons on Rocky Top. Annacone went on to play on the ATP Tour from 1985-92 and later served as coach to World No. 1s Pete Sampras and Roger Federer. He was inducted into the ITA Hall of Fame in 2002. 

Paul Annacone

A Knoxville native, Colquitt served as UT's punter from 2005-08. He closed out his career ranked second on UT's all-time punting list with an average punt of 42.569 yards and recorded a career-long 71-yard punt during his senior season in 2008. He went undrafted in the 2009 NFL draft but was signed to the Denver Broncos active roster later that year. This upcoming season with mark his seventh with the Broncos organization.

Happy birthday, Paul and Britton!

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