Dec. 4, 2009
The Tennessee football team returned to practice Friday after a five-day break following its 30-24, overtime win at Kentucky. The Vols wrapped their first regular season under new head coach Lane Kiffin with a 7-5 overall record and a 4-4 mark in Southeastern Conference play.
UT still awaits official word on its bowl destination, and consequently used its Friday workout to improve inexperienced players rather than prepare for an opponent.
"We talked about having a really good practice today, a very physical practice, a high-energy practice," Kiffin said. "We'll be back out here tomorrow for another one. We worked with a lot of young guys, gave our threes more reps than normal. It was good to see those guys and put an evaluation on them."
Kiffin mentioned numerous times throughout the season that UT's bowl practice period would be more about the Vols than their opponent. He wants to use the majority of the workouts to improve players further down the depth chart and prepare for the future.
"We work on getting better. We work with a number of our younger players who have not had as many chances to develop as our older players. We go against each other, Tennessee defense vs. Tennessee offense."
Tennessee will practice again Saturday afternoon before taking a break next week for finals. The Vols will officially know their bowl destination and opponent on Sunday after conference title games are played and the Bowl Championship Series selects its participants.