KNOXVILLE, Tenn. -- Tennessee conducted its final practice before the DISH Orange & White Game on Thursday, running through a productive 90-minute session in shorts and helmets on Haslam Field.
First-year quarterbacks coach Mike Canales spoke with reporters at the conclusion of practice, discussing the way his group of young signal-callers have progressed not only over the course of the spring season but in adapting to the things that he has challenged them to accomplish.
"One thing I've noticed real well is their pocket presence," Canales said. "They've done a great job moving and extending plays and with their vision down the field. I think that's important, understanding that the platform is going to change. They're going to have to make throws outside a normal platform. They can get into a rhythm and drop back and throw and I've seen vast improvement on that. I've seen their accuracy improve. They're really working on the location of the ball. They get it."
Tennessee's spring season concludes on Saturday with the annual DISH Orange & White Game at Neyland Stadium (4 p.m. ET). The Orange & White Game will be televised on SEC Network for the second consecutive year with Clay Matvik and Clint Stoerner calling the action and Dr. Jerry Punch reporting from the sidelines.
Admission and parking are free to the public and a Fan Day event will precede kickoff, beginning at 1:30 p.m.
Like all Tennessee athletic events, UT's clear-bag policy will be enforced the Orange & White Game. For more information on the clear-bag and other safety policies, click here.
Day 14 Quotables
Defensive coordinator Bob Shoop
(On the depth of the defense being challenged)
"Now's not so hotsy-totsy. We've got a lot of injuries. When you're scrimmaging, it's not like you're off the field. There's somebody on. Your unit is always on the field. When you only have three safeties healthy or you only have three defensive ends healthy, that means you kind of have an awkward rotation where someone is taking maybe more reps than they need to -- which is good and bad. It's good because you're getting a lot of reps, but it's bad because sometimes those guys get fatigued; but it's given those guys an opportunity to get ready for the fall -- and like I keep saying to everybody -- one of the things that was unique to this team last year was how many injuries we had and guys stepped up and played up to their capabilities. Whether it was Cortez McDowell, whether it was Colton Jumper, whether it was Kyle Phillips moving inside, whether it was Quay Picou or whether it was just somebody else. I don't know who that person's going to be next fall, but the more reps those guys get this spring the better prepared they're going to be come fall."
Quarterbacks coach Mike Canales
(On learning about his quarterbacks)
"I always encouraged them to come up and sit in my office and we call it 5-for-5. They could come in and talk about anything they want for five minutes and then talk about anything I want for five minutes and just get a chance to get to know each other. Through this process of just coming into the room and having a conversation, it doesn't have to be about football it can be about anything. But at the same time, it usually comes back to football but that's because of their lead."
Defensive backs coach Charlton Warren
(On what has he seen from his DBs as camp is winding down)
"I’ve seen these guys have a willingness to change technique and fundamentals. I’ve seen a group that wants to come together and jell. They come to practice every day with an effort to work their butts off. I’m very excited about the progress they’ve made through spring. It’s not easy changing things. Change is not easy at times, but they have really bought in. I’m pretty proud of the way they have bought in and I appreciate the way that they have worked."