Fulmer says Morley will return to Tennessee

When classes begin on Wednesday, Tennessee’s football team will welcome two new faces to campus.

They’ll also welcome an old one back.

Safety Demetrice Morley has been readmitted to Tennessee, one year after being dismissed from school for falling below the university’s academic standards.

“I expect him to be with us, and I expect him to do a great job showing he deserves to be here,” UT coach Phillip Fulmer said Sunday about Morley.

Morley, who remained in Knoxville and attended classes at Pellissippi State to regain admission, started 10 games at strong safety in 2006 and recorded 51 tackles, two interceptions and a fumble recovery.

Two incoming freshmen, tailback Tauren Poole (Toccoa, Ga.) and fullback Austin Johnson (Hickory, N.C.), will also enroll for the spring semester, which begins Wednesday.

Morley, though, could have the biggest impact.

His possible return had players buzzing following Tennessee’s 21-17 victory over Wisconsin in last week’s Outback Bowl.

Tennessee only loses one player – All-SEC free safety Jonathan Hefney – from its secondary.

The addition of Morley means that the Vols return five defensive backs with at least seven career starts: Safety Eric Berry (14) and corners Marsalous Johnson (7), corner Brent Vinson (10), DeAngelo Willingham (8).

In addition to that group, the Vols will have Antonio Gaines, who started UT’s first two games in 2007 before suffering a season-ending knee injury.

Whether or not the Vols will be without four players who sought evaluations from the NFL’s college advisory committee remains to be seen.

Fulmer said Sunday that those four players – All-SEC linebacker Jerod Mayo, tailback Arian Foster, All-SEC offensive lineman Anthony Parker and punter Britton Colquitt – have received their grades back from the NFL, but no decisions have been made yet.

Fulmer still plans to speak with those players and their families before a decision is made.

Underclassmen have until Jan. 15 to declare for the NFL draft, however they may withdraw their name within 72 hours and return to college without affecting their eligibility.

Tennessee could also receive news this week about another new face.

Former Alcoa and Florida State tight end Brandon Warren has been taking classes at Pellissippi State since returning from Tallahassee last winter to seek a transfer to Tennessee, although his status with UT is unknown.

Warren, an All-American at Alcoa and a freshman All-American with the Seminoles, must be admitted to Tennessee before he can begin practicing with the football team.

Drew Edwards covers University of Tennessee football. He may be reached at 865-342-6274.

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Comments » 62

pdhuff#552644 writes:

Things are looking up. Pls go to class, D.

ctownvol writes:

Morley and Berry at safety! Good news for the D! Glad to hear DMorley has his act together.

GerryOP writes:

Demetrice, do yourself a favor. Don't hang out with Taylor, Bolden, McCoy and friends!

Welcome back, wishing you well!!

mbradshaw1#655539 writes:

Great job DM!!! Just keep making all the right moves. You have shown that you were man enough to stay in K-ville and work hard to get your grades back in order instead of transferring or going back to Miami. Hats off to you.


Kwitcherbellyachin writes:

I'd much rather have Morley than Hefney, at least based on Hef's senior season.

FWBVol writes:

Way to go Demetrice. More than doing the Volunteers proud, you've done yourself proud. It takes a real man to step up and pay the piper and you've done that by staying in Knoxville and going to Pellissippi State.

I believe this young man has learned his lesson the hard way by having football taken from him and being forced to pay his own way. I don't see him making the same mistakes again.

andy112382#209793 writes:

Awesome news.....should be a fun secondary to watch. The defense got so much better as the season went on, all leading up to holding LSU to one offensive touchdown in the title game, which the way they hype up their offense, is a solid accomplishment.

If we get a d-line playing above average or better, we will have a rock solid defense, especially if Mayo stays.

ellisonfamily writes:

With all this help at DB, it may give more flexibility to try Eric Berry on offense and the return game. He is an awfully exciting player...especially when he gets his hands on the ball.

cb4vols#206343 writes:

Now... if Gerald Williams will just emerge from that black hole he fell into....

cjraney writes:

Congrats to you, Mr. Morley. Hope you will take advantage of your second chance at UT and keep working hard to achieve your goals.

TommyJack writes:

Nice work Demetrice Morley. You should be proud.

Note: POSITIVE post

southernACmavs writes:

It would take a total dip stick to mess this secondary up.OOOOOHHHHH YEAAA Slade is still over there...With slade 3and 12 is an automatic 1st down. SPEND MORE EXPECT LESS

thesavageorange writes:

Where in the hell is the real TommyJack you imposter!Just kidding.This is grat news.IMO things are finally looking up around here.

TommyJack writes:

you're killin me Savage! :)

invisiblekid writes:

Nice job by Morley, good to see a kid dedicated enough to the program to work his way back like this. I look forward to seeing him back on the field in the Spring.

Talking about Austin Johnson for a minute, he is a really good kid and one thing we won't see is any academic trouble. 3.9 GPA and rated as the best LB in NC. He is only rated at 3 stars by Rivals but he really stood out in the games I saw him play this year. May be a tick slow and big to be a LB at UT but he has the frame to develop into a really good DE IMO. He also has th atheletic ability to switch to TE as well. Glad to see him getting onto campus early.

pdhuff#552644 writes:

fullback Austin Johnson!!! - tngeoff, what's a full back? Where do they play?

thesavageorange writes:

TommyJack:Would you like some kool-aid?By the way I meant things are looking up w/ the program.Atleast you can be negative and clever at the same time.Some negative posters just don't make sense.

TommyJack writes:

Savage: Agreed. I would like a high quality OC that believes in running 2 backs. That would really make me a positive poster. Well, most of the time. Time for CPF to step up big time.

pkaplan writes:

Drew Edwards talked to Fulmer on coaching search. We will have a story later today.

Phil Kaplan

TommyJack writes:

Phil Kaplan. Most excellent

amorton12#256091 writes:

Sure hope Morely studied how to do form tackling at Pelli State, especially if he's replacing Heffney. Fours years at UT and Heff never seemed to grasp the concept.

WYLOVER writes:

Nice to have Morley back...I am getting more positive about next year. There are no excuses on defense. Yes, our D line isn't the best but come on, this is a pretty stacked D. I am not nearly as negative on O as most people either. Cutcliffe leaving is a good thing...opens the door for a good outside hire. Crompton should be good (Tee Martin didn't have nearly the real game experience or ability as Crompton does). We have a 1,000 yard rusher and receiver coming back. I don't think either one is lights out but they can't be that bad to put up those numbers in the SEC. If Greer or Hardesty can step up a little, we have the best backfield we have had since 2004.

It could be 2001 offense (better qb, not as good at receiver, equal at rb) and 2005 D (money defense given how much the offense let them down that year).....should be a good squad.

Fulmer has to deliver. If he doesn't, the headhunters on this site should get their way.

Go Pearl Vols!!!

justingh1 writes:

Does anyone remember in 04 when Hefney was a freshman and he got a 15 yd penalty for flipping some wr from unlv when he hit him,and when he returned a punt for a td in the same game only to have it called back for holding? He seemed destined for greatness.I think this year he had what Jamal had in 99 preservedraftstatusitis or nflarrhea

glockjockey writes:

I just want to say "GO VOLS!"

JETnTN writes:

We need recruits, BUT Morley and Warren would be better than any recruit we could pick up!!! Can't wait till next September!!

pdhuff#552644 writes:

tngeoff, tks for the info on the fullback position. I was really mulling that along with why moon pies don't have covering on the bottoms, but I'll give that one to Corker to handle.

Your next assignment will be to show how we will be better on defense with no quality d-linemen for 2008. This is a 5 hr elective course.

Kudoes for TommyJack for "pound the fritter". Quality. I can see that on a van flag. That'd scare 'em rolling into Athens next fall with that bad boy flying.

TommyJack writes:

PD: The still make Moon Pies??

skyhawk836 writes:

Are we graduating anyone better than Morley and/or Warren?

Where is Pellissippi(sic)?

heathut15 writes:

this makes things look good on the defensive side of the ball the secondary will be awesome as hell what do you think now if we can get an oc and some good recruits we will be back in business

chrisw2967 writes:

thats the only thing Fulmer has done right is announce this. maybe before fall camp begins he will announce a new OC

vtvol#210290 writes:

The addition of Brandon Warren would more than make up for the graduations of Chris Brown and Brad Cottam. He'd be good for 40-45 catches per year and would open up the running game. I hope he gets in.

pdhuff#552644 writes:

TJ, I dream of sitting in a room with an ogg and all 6 or 7 different Moon Pies. Hell, I even dream of a Vol recruiting ranking above #44 or #10 in the SEC. Thank goodness for Ky & Vandy.

One service is thinking of moving Ga ahead of ND for # 1. No sweat, we'll work like heck and coach 'em up. This late rush by Fulmer the "Ites" are touting is going to be something, hoo boy!

GerryOP writes:

Better yet 'Hawk, WHAT is a Pellissippi? Sounds like a Pell Grant magnet.

britt writes:

Welcome back DM. We got a fb? I thought we gave up on those.

AllVol writes:

Anticipation is building, folks. I am expecting elctrifying news. The rest of the SEC will fear the Volunteer once more. PD, ever thought of donning the red and black? UGA has had five out of seven top five recruiting classes. What have they won? Two SEC titles in seven years. BFD . . . .

nicksjuzunk#646117 writes:

Ladies and Gentleman,

Prepare yourself for Coach Fulmer's bag of tricks. I predict we are about to see some good things and he will retire laughing when it is said and done. I predict that after that, he will send a box of Krispy Kreme's to all of the negative posters. (not a bad deal for them though.)

I hope Morley doesn't show lots of rust from a year off from football.

CoverOrange writes:

Pellissippi St is a community college formerly known as Roane St CC. It is located on the Pellissippi Parkway between Knox-Farragut and Oak Ridge.

Would be interested to know if managed to stay in shape over the course of the last year. We already know Mapu had a tough time away from the Hill.

skyhawk836 writes:

Posted by WD40plusVol on January 6, 2008 at 8:08 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Pellissippi St is a community college formerly known as Roane St CC. It is located on the Pellissippi Parkway between Knox-Farragut and Oak Ridge.



utfpmd writes:

Need linemen.

hueypilot writes:

KK better get started stockpiling donuts nick, cause that's a mighty tall order. Why hasn't Malzahn's name been mentioned in this OC search. Gotta be the hottest OC in the country, no?

jawjavol writes:


I am not sure you can compare Morley and Mapu's hiatus. Mapu was not allowed to lift weights or work out during his two year mission. Morley was only away for one year and I am sure if he was in Solway working his way back to the team he did not neglect his meal ticket. Would not be surprised if he spent a great deal of time with his former and future fellow vols.

murrayvol writes:

Uh, how much later on that story Phil? I'm gettin' a little sleepy over here.

nicksjuzunk#646117 writes:

I have a friend who is a source of a source of a former backup practice squad player who let me know what his palm reader said...

Tommorow, Coach Fulmer will announce the following.

Trooper Taylor is willing to stay at UT for the same position and less money.

Spurrier, Petrino, Kippy Brown, Urban Meyer and Nick Saban have agreed to become co-offensive coordinators. (the following day, Petrino and Saban resign and open pie shops in Duluth GA and Mascot, TN respectively)

Terelle Pryor announces he was just kidding and reveals a 6 inch TN tattoo on his left bicep... thus sealing the deal.

Demetrice Morley and Eric Berry are arrested for chasing down deer in cades cove and knocking the fur off them. Footage on Youtube immediately becomes available and charges are dropped when authorities realize it is actually pretty cool.

Remember, you heard it here first.

pdhuff#552644 writes:

errrr. Allvol - good post- How many titles Ga has won ? Two SEC titles in seven years. That's TWO more than we have won, perhaps you didn't notice.

No 1st graders in Tenn were even born when Phil got his last one. Perhaps they'll give us t-shirts of the 10th anniversary. It's here. Stay the course. Keep lowering the bar.

tngeoff-loved the picture of the kool-aid fading into fearless leader. Good.

vscebail#247785 writes:

Hey Savage Orange! I don't know if you are still on this board or not. --- Do you know where I could buy some savage orange merchandise? That was a GREAT LOGO!

seaplane#216536 writes:

I've heard alot about Warren from a coach at FSU. As a freshman, he was probably the best player on their team in 2006. He would most certainly be an immediate impact player on this 2008 Vol team. FSU did not want to give him up. Besides all that, he has a good attitude and is a gentleman off the field.

orangebloodgmc writes:

Good news on Morely; apparently some word on the way about Warren.

What is latest about Gerald Williams? Anything definite?

TommyJack writes:

Nick: Apparently you're smoking the local flora.
Are you beginning to hear tom-toms? Get out of the jungle now, brother!

MikeTheVol writes:

To the perpetual whiners, grumblers and complainers. Check the archives on all the UT head coaches from the very beginning. Fulmer has a slightly better overall winning percentage than the great General Robert Neyland. Saying that Fulmer should be fired is like saying they should have fired General Neyland. The defense rests . . .

AllanO444 writes:

So what year would Morley be next year? A junior?

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