Crompton needs elbow sugery; doctors describe ailment as minor

A sore arm won’t be Jonathan Crompton’s excuse if he struggles in today’s scrimmage.

And why should it be?

The junior quarterback has endured pain throughout spring practice with a loose particle in his right (throwing) elbow.

Cortisone shots were used once it was determined that no damage could be done.

Surgery is scheduled for the week after spring practice, which ends on April 19 with the Orange and White Game. Doctors have described the ailment as very minor.

This is the second surgery to be performed on Crompton’s throwing arm.

Crompton had a torn labrum repaired in his shoulder shortly after arriving at UT.

The recovery time for the latest surgery is three to six weeks, meaning Crompton should be back to full strength by the time summer workouts begin in early June.

Whatever Crompton may have lacked in production this fall, he’s made up in toughness, practicing despite persistent pain.

The heir apparent to Erik Ainge has become, simply, the heir.

“Jon’s our quarterback,” UT coach Phillip Fulmer said. “… He will be our quarterback unless something really drastic happens.”

That doesn’t mean Fulmer and staff are ready to shut it down and open the season in the Rose Bowl against UCLA.

Far from it.

Tough or not, Crompton threw three interceptions just a week ago in UT’s last full scrimmage.

Receivers and a slippery turf shared the blame, but that doesn’t make the offensive performance, or lack thereof, acceptable.

“Taking care of the football, regardless of what else happens,” Fulmer quickly retorted when asked what he hoped his offense would accomplish today. “I’m not expecting the defense to touch the football.”

Fulmer talks of timing more than throws when he critiques Crompton. With a clock running on every play, UT’s quarterbacks are expected to throw the ball within 3 seconds of the snap.

That hasn’t happened nearly enough.

In order to remedy the situation, Fulmer has decided to take the green, non-contact jerseys off his quarterbacks today. The theory is that a linebacker’s tackle carries more reinforcement than the ticking of a timer.

“That should increase the sense of urgency for him not to hold the ball,” Fulmer said of Crompton.

That’s a gamble considering backups Nick Stephens and B.J. Coleman have yet to draw strong reviews and Crompton is the only quarterback on UT’s roster with game experience.

Crompton will get approximately 32 scrimmage snaps today.

“We all want to have a good scrimmage, go out there and compete,” Crompton said. “That’s what we’re here for. We’re trying to get ready for UCLA. We’re just trying to have a good scrimmage as an offense. Mainly as an offense, we’re trying to have no turnovers and no penalties.”

Those aren’t the only goals. Finding playmakers downfield in the passing game would be nice.

Running the ball consistently would be better. A work in progress, Fulmer estimates Dave Clawson’s new offense is 80-percent installed.

“You have growing pains, but we’re starting to get over them and get over the little speed bumps,” Crompton said. “We’re starting to get better.”

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Comments » 21

mikes70gto writes:

From the sound of things Crompton is the man,and Creer had better show his stuff with Hardesty out.This new O could play into our hands as a new look Vol "O".

mikes70gto writes:

" and give the opposition trouble".

pdhuff#552644 writes:

"Don't expect the defense to touch the ball".

I'm gonna be good and leave that alone. It should be no surprise that Crompton is the man. Right or wrong, seniority rules with Phil with Berry a rare exception.

JC will be fine and able in Sept.

RJ_Vol writes:

"Playmakers down the field..." = Kenny O'Neil or we have an open tryout like Florida. Hey, maybe I can help. I run like a 4.2 in 4 minutes and twenty seconds!

Get well soon J. Crompton. We need you. I'll always remember your mom calling a Tri-Cities radio station to confirm your committment to UT and not to Spurrier. You're a true Vol and honored your word!

4114 writes:

Remember CPF we must stay the course

CoverOrange writes:

PD, hate to disagree with ya, but I still respect ya. I'm thinking of Casey Clausen, who reportedly was kept out the first three games because of tendinitis he developed the summer before. I'm also thinking of Ainge and Schaeffer as examples of flouting the seniority rules rule. Both Travis Henry and Travis Stephens played as freshmen, neither as well as they did later in their careers. I'm sure there are plenty more examples on both sides of the, debate.

Bigger_Al writes:

Fiddle faddle.

nicksjuzunk#646117 writes:

Beware the curse of the jammed pinky!!!

pdhuff#552644 writes:

WD40 Jamal Lewis rode the pines. Unfortunately Ga didn't recognize Herschel until he got to Neyland. Who would Ainge have beat out? Cooter.

We'll see how many newcomers start vs UCLA.
In 140 days or so. Phil likes things familiar. Clawson may eventually rub him the wrong way if we derail early ala -UCLA-Fla-Aubie.

I'm very leery of UCLA. If those d-linemen last year were the best we had and here they are again, we better call on someone. Quick. We'll see.

I think Crompton will be fine as a QB.

Go_Joe_Bruin writes:

Yes - Bruins defensive will be fast. Should be a solid game, hope you guys are going to the will not be dissapointed...sorry, untill the final score.

CoverOrange writes:

PD, as I said, you can find cases for either side of the arguement. I just tend to believe that Phil has other reasons, if not just in addition, to play certain players over others, than seniority.

Supposedly, Jamal hadn't learned pass protection schemes.

Herschel didn't start the first game of his freshman season but got in pretty darn quick against Tennessee.

Ainge and Schaeffer were elevated early in summer practice over CJ Leak and Rick Clausen. Both with some actual field experience. In hindsight, great move but a risky decision Phil made on the practice field.

Thing is, we don't really know what Phil sees or doesn't see on the practice field and what all he bases his choices on.

nicksjuzunk#646117 writes:


Well said. Of course I defy your logic and say that we as frantic posters have a much better idea about how to run a successful football program than a man who literally lives UT football everyday.

I for one think we should just bench all the QB's and have a foot race with all the students at UT. The fastest gets to start. All runners up get delicious twinkies and Pepsi twist!

givehim6 writes:

With phil's new philosophy of coaching makes me think (when the going gets tough, the tough gets going). Last year people got tough on him, now he's getting tough, and taking his team with him. Glad to see UT's toughing up. Playing hurt but still play the game. GO VOLS1

nicksjuzunk#646117 writes:

Actually, having the students race for the starting QB position is silly... now those cut-outs at Dollywood that you throw the football through... now that's what we should do!

TommyJack writes:

With Cut, the QB position was based on alliances with parents/uncles, etc. Hopefully with The Claw, it will be decided on merit.

pdhuff#552644 writes:

Listened to ol' Doug Matthews and Tony Barnhardt this am on 104.5 the Zone. Some banter about student tickets and overview of the spring work-outs of SEC teams. Doug did comment in his experience Phil sets his mind on a QB early and sticks with it. This from an ex-UT coach and SEC observer/insider. For example. His loyalty to Randy Sanders is legend.

Not saying this is right or wrong. We'll see how many newcomers start at UCLA. Doesn't matter, just hope they play to their potential, no one can ask more of them. The chips will fall. Some will be happy, some will be sad.

Barnhardt did say that Bama practices under Saban are frenzied. No lulls.
Also said to the effect that Richt thinks this could be his best team he's had.

CoverOrange writes:

Nick, I am humbled by your insight and genius. LOL

nicksjuzunk#646117 writes:


So you are suggesting that rather than take a look at who can win the most games and thus ensure that his own job performance looked good, securing a raise for himself, as well as making the fan base happy, he would just choose what parents he liked instead and play their kid. Right?

Do you have any proof or is this just more speculation about how it works on the inside without basis?

TommyJack writes:

Nick: If by proof, you mean was I in the room, then no. Like most posts on here, including yours, I'm speculating. But it's speculation based on years of observing. No, it's not which parents he liked the most; it's promises made during recruitment. It's promises to help development little junior into an NFL player.
I'll go back to the Ainge injury and the stubborn refusal to play anyone else. Made no sense. I'll be waiting on your thoughts based on facts.

nicksjuzunk#646117 writes:


You're right. Most of us can only speculate so it is all on our point of view.

My point of view is that Fulmer will put what he feels is the best product on the field regardless of who aunts and uncles are etc.

I do not believe the CPF is a huge risk taker. Even most Fulmer backers will agree with that. He is also loyal. Most detractors will even agree with that.

With Ainge and the pinky, I think that Coach Fulmer felt that we were in better hands with a senior quarterback who had been the man since he was halfway through freshman year all the way up to the Cal game. To pull Ainge at the point of injury I feel would not have been wise as Crompton had shown promise but not a proven ability to lead a team to victory.

Of course with Ainge, there was the occasional fumble and the (possible) inability to throw it down field but we may also speculate on why ANY plays were or were not called.

I think JC will be good, but I feel Ainge was the best choice last year.

Just your opinion, do you feel that we would have won more games last year by playing a QB other than Ainge?

Your thoughts?

tnfanincali writes:

its great that we can discuss all of the attributes and negatives of the decisions that those in charge make everyday and their effects on our beloved TN football. what amazes me is the standards that some people hold our program to. there is a click that is more conservative (older) and would rather beat alabama than florida any time, year, or location. then there are those of us (younger but now in our 30s) that hate.. can't stand that stretch in the 90s when superior's teams made us look worse than foolish (remember that touchdown pass that made it 35-0 1st quarter on a 4th and 10?). then there is mark richt and his early dominance and what seemed to be a new curse on fulmer and co. yet, phil has weathered these storms, won championships, lost horribly, lost (and fired) coordinators, and is now the longest tenured SEC head coach with not a bad record to boot (who also happens to coach in the toughest division in D1). i live on the west coast now and it is a privilege when i get to watch a game on TV, much less attend a game live. so to all you lucky ones that get to live and breathe tennessee football daily from the heart of Neyland, think about the similarities from 97 to 98 and from 07 to 08. drop back passer to mobile QB, no stars team identity, stingy D, and a little bit of luck, and to the rest, QUIT YOUR GOLLDANG female dogin!!!!

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