Oct. 3, 2008
Nick Stephens, a redshirt sophomore from Flower Mound, Texas, will take the opening snap for the Vols Saturday vs. Northern Illinois. Phillip Fulmer made the announcement a few minutes ago in the Neyland Stadium Media Center.
Fulmer noted that Jonathan Crompton had an opportunity to seize the reins of the offense and hadn't succeeded, so the right thing to do would be give Stephens his shot.
"He deserves the chance to see how he does in a game," Fulmer said. "That's for our team. We need an offensive lift, and the team is first.
"He's become in the last couple of weeks more consistent with his play, his handling of the huddle and voice inflection. Those kinds of things. He's had ability all along; he's a young guy who hasn't played yet, so I'm anxious to see how he does."
Another item of note: The head coach did not go so far as to say both quarterbacks would play Saturday vs. the Huskies. He said the ideal situation would be for Stephens to play well and never look back.
UT fans world wide are hoping for the same thing as the Vols look to rebound from a 1-3 start with SEC East foe Georgia and No. 2-ranked Alabama looming.