UT-Vanderbilt Set For Morning Kickoff

Nov. 9, 2004

The Southeastern Conference announced Tuesday that Tennessee's Nov. 20 against Vanderbilt in Nashville will be televised by Jefferson-Pilot Sports and kicks off at 11:30 a.m. Central time.

The game marks Tennessee's second appearance on the JP Sports SEC Game of the Week. UT defeated South Carolina 43-29 Oct. 30 in Columbia.

The Vols lead the series against Vanderbilt 66-26-5, having won the last 21 consecutive games. Tennessee and Vandy met for the first time in 1892 and have played annually since 1945.

Phillip Fulmer's record against the Commodores is 11-0.

Other SEC teams involved in televised games that day are South Carolina at Clemson (JP-ACC package), Auburn at Alabama (CBS) and Florida at Florida State (ESPN).

Tennessee's good fortune after losing two freshman quarterbacks in the last two weeks -- Brent Schaeffer to a broken collarbone and Erik Ainge to a shoulder separation -- is that Option No. 3 knows a thing or two about major college football.

"We're very, very fortunate to have two upper classmen like Rick Clausen and C.J. Leak, who have put this program first all year long," head coach Phillip Fulmer said Tuesday. "Now that they're called upon, they are right there to see if they can help."

Junior Rick Clausen, who relieved in Saturday's 17-13 loss to Notre Dame, earned a 2002 start for LSU before transferring to Knoxville. He is the younger brother of four-year UT starter Casey Clausen.

C.J. Leak, a sixth-year senior, entered this preseason as the Vols' projected first-stringer after starting the first three games of 2000 for Wake Forest. A severe knee injury cut that season short and he transferred to UT the following year.

For Tennessee, Leak started one game in 2002.

"A lot of times when you get to the third quarterback, it's a very young person that maybe hasn't had any kind of experience," Fulmer said. "In this case, we've got two guys who have played.

"Their job is to run the offense and be productive and play within the system. Obviously, whoever the quarterback is, people around them are going to have to play well."

Fulmer expects Clausen to start the Nov. 20 game at Vanderbilt, with Leak as the backup. UT hosts Kentucky Nov. 27.

Tennessee, 7-2 and 5-1 SEC, returned to practice Tuesday afternoon, working for nearly two hours in Vol gear at Haslam Field. UT still holds the inside track toward its fourth SEC Championship Game appearance in the last eight years.

"We're very fortunate to still have the same goals we had before the loss last week and that's to win the SEC," Fulmer said. "This week, we're working like heck to get well. We've got to get some people well and then get really excited about playing these last two ballgames."





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