Lathers delivers hard hit on Bryce Brown

It's a rude ‘welcome to SEC ball'

Recruiting analysts dubbed Bryce Brown the top tailback prospect in the nation. During Thursday’s practice, he was the top target.

The freshman from Wichita, Kan., was on the receiving side of at least three big hits as Tennessee donned shoulder pads for the first time in preseason camp.

“I doubt he’s been hit like that before ever,” first-year UT coach Lane Kiffin said. “Some guys get hit like that and they stay down for a while.”

Linebacker Herman Lathers dolled out the first and perhaps most jarring blow — a blindside blast that sent the 6-foot, 215-pound Brown to the turf as the ball flew free.

“It’s just, ‘Welcome to SEC ball,’ ” the 6-1, 213-pound Lathers said.

Kiffin applauded the contact even though the first day of full pads isn’t until Saturday.

“That’s what we need to do,” Kiffin said of physical play. “This conference is going to hit him like that. They’re not going to take it easy on him.”

Kiffin said such plays are part of the reason he believes in physical practices early in fall camp.

“Those were big-time, game-time major hits,” Kiffin said. “That was 99 percent. Running through him. He needs that.

“He fumbled it today. If we went the avenue where we practiced 80 percent, that would have been the opener right there (when he fumbled).”

Kiffin believes Brown is now on the path to earning his teammates’ respect since he quickly bounced up after each hit, finished practice strong and never complained about getting knocked around.

“That’s when they start letting you in,” Kiffin said. “You just don’t get in automatically in football. Those old guys aren’t going to let you in until you prove yourself.”

Brown, who isn’t available for interviews as per UT’s freshman policy, might have already created some waves before practice even began had receiver Todd Campbell not been so understanding.

The sophomore reserve was told unceremoniously that he wouldn’t be wearing the No. 11 jersey he wore last year. That number now belongs to Brown.

“It was a surprise to me, but a number is a number,” said Campbell, who is sporting No. 85. “If you’re going to ball, you’re going to ball in whatever you wear. I could wear 137. If I’m still playing I’m fine with that.

“A lot of kids would come back and have hard feelings about that. I wasn’t worried about it. I like Bryce. I don’t have anything against him. If he needs anything, he knows I’m right there for him.”

Lathers was also there for Brown following practice. Lathers made a point to shake hands with Brown as he sat on the practice field, obviously drained from what must have been the toughest practice of his life.

Lathers can empathize. It wasn’t that long ago that the suddenly hard-hitting redshirt freshman was a newcomer on campus like Brown.

“When I was a young guy and first came in, it was like everybody was out to get you,” Lathers said. “Just welcome you to SEC ball, so everybody was out to get you.”

Lathers said Brown’s former status as one of the top prospects in the nation doesn’t mean UT’s defenders are out to get him.

But is he a target simply because he is a freshman?

“I would say, ‘yeah,’ ” Lathers said with a smile.

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Comments » 82

ethanfrome writes:

Go vols!!

OldSmokey writes:

Glad he wasn't hurt. But only 1 way to make them tough!!

volguy#211935 writes:

Welcome, freshman!

tnvolintheboro writes:

GO BIG ORANGE

DennisVols writes:

WACK!!!!!!

BloodOrange64 writes:

Welcome to the SEC Mr. Brown. GO VOLS!

reidtownriverrat writes:

everyone of them need smacked in the mouth, hold on to the ball.

UTANDNOBAMA writes:

Hey whats the deal with those freaky Texas A&M retro stripes on the jerseys...? Are they there for the season? Instead of the black jerseys?

give_him_6 writes:

To pound the rock..you have to be ready to take a pounding!!

VolChick2009 writes:

It's good these guys are getting physical without pads and the new guys are taking shots early.

I miss the days when teams where afraid to play Tennessee. Sounds like a breath of fresh air to me.

TSNSD4UT writes:

Your in the S.E.C.now boy's get tough or get gone.

senracjr writes:

It says he hit the ground and the ball popped out, the ground caused the ball to come out therefor it wasn't a fumble!

UTANDNOBAMA writes:

in response to BadNewsCafego:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Thanks Cafego..for the Info! Now I can get back to doing something constructive like plotting the demise of the tide and gators..(Evil Laugh)

givehim6 writes:

Toto were not in Kansas. Mr. Brown Your not in Hi school anymore.

rich182x writes:

Thumpage!

VolChick2009 writes:

Better to cough the ball up now and learn how to protect it vs. on game day.

KennyPowers_UTfan writes:

This ain't Kansas!

FeelVol writes:

What a refreshing change this summer camp will be,I'll be looking for a tougher team than we've seen in a while this fall.Go Vols!

Major_Magilicutty writes:

I will defend #27 every chance I get. That d-bag Adams called it an "Arian Foster" when Bryce Brown fumbled yesterday. Classless. Foster contributed a great deal to our victories during the time he was here...some VOLs and crappy journalists forget that so easily.

TnScooby writes:

Good to hear the intensity level is so high this early...IMO this new attitude is just what we need to sustain the recruiting momentum...Outstanding to hear Bryce is as tough as advertised!!

VolChick2009 writes:

in response to DaMan:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

I think it's newsworthy because in the last few years the previous staff had guys tiptoeing around the first few practices. Their lack of physicality showed big time last year. If we are going to hang with the likes of UF, Bama and Georgia, we had better get tough, and get tough quick.

Go Vols!!

TommyJack writes:

in response to DaMan:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

I smell Troll poo.

xvolx writes:

I would have to agree with Monty here. Only Idiots play tackle without pads.

VolGraduate writes:

in response to Major_Magilicutty:

I will defend #27 every chance I get. That d-bag Adams called it an "Arian Foster" when Bryce Brown fumbled yesterday. Classless. Foster contributed a great deal to our victories during the time he was here...some VOLs and crappy journalists forget that so easily.

Agreed. Foster had some inopportune fumbles but he was very successful otherwise.

On topic can't wait to see the new look vols!!! I feel like an ole miss fan...excited in the offseason about being good again

VolChick2009 writes:

in response to xvolx:

I would have to agree with Monty here. Only Idiots play tackle without pads.

There is a difference between "playing tackle" and being physical and seeing who is tough and who is not.

You see what powder puff practices and green jerseys got us last year.

mbible1utk#324980 writes:

Way to go Herman Lathers... I hope our defense hits like they did against LSU in the SECCG a couple of years ago... I saw our defense laying the wood to people. We need it....we need it in practice, we need it to prepare for Florida's best shot against us. Full contact practice translates well to full-contact games

ArealVolFan writes:

in response to DaMan:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

That is to go along with one TD. Pathetic for a back that was over 10 tds and 1,000 yds the year before. Not to mention that fumble was among one of the mistakes that cost us the UCLA game. One of the biggest ones.

VolChick2009 writes:

in response to ArealVolFan:

That is to go along with one TD. Pathetic for a back that was over 10 tds and 1,000 yds the year before. Not to mention that fumble was among one of the mistakes that cost us the UCLA game. One of the biggest ones.

That is on the coaching staff and the type of offense, or lack thereof. Do you really think Arian just got that much worse in the course of one season? The whole offense was horrible and the one common denominator was Clawson. It all started with the flip flopping offensive line that never got a grasp on the new scheme.

txvolsfan writes:

in response to DaMan:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

That's just your upper lip
You IDIOT!!!

bigaldaddy writes:

in response to Major_Magilicutty:

I will defend #27 every chance I get. That d-bag Adams called it an "Arian Foster" when Bryce Brown fumbled yesterday. Classless. Foster contributed a great deal to our victories during the time he was here...some VOLs and crappy journalists forget that so easily.

Adams has always been a classless dou shay. I boycott his articles. He also sounds like a clown on the radio. KNS, for the most part is useless but it is all we locals have.

NobodyCares (Inactive) writes:

We are seeing the return of Tennessee Slobberknocking Football. No green jerseys and only one rule ... there are no rules. If they are moving and in your way ... hit 'em. Pads? Don't need no stinkin' pads.

How 'Bout Them Vols?

ArealVolFan writes:

in response to VolChick2009:

That is on the coaching staff and the type of offense, or lack thereof. Do you really think Arian just got that much worse in the course of one season? The whole offense was horrible and the one common denominator was Clawson. It all started with the flip flopping offensive line that never got a grasp on the new scheme.

Honestly, I just don't think he was ever that good. Yes, he had a strong freshman and excellent junior campaign. However, he never had elite speed and he is injury prone. I also don't ever think he was a true leader on the field. There is also the fumbling issue. Yes, it is somewhat blown out of proportion, but he cost us games plain and simple. As far as his decreased performance last year being the fault of the coaching staff I don't entirely buy that either. I think Arian took plays off and did not give it his all throughout the season. I think when we all began to realize the season was lost he quit playing like he should. He should have easily been able to eclipse the mark he needed to move into being the top rusher in UT history regardless of the line. We played too many bad out of conference games like NIU and Wyoming and UCLA to not have done that. I don't hate the guy and wish him the best in the NFL, but I'm not all that sad to not have him in the backfield anymore.

BigOrangeCrazy writes:

in response to VolGraduate:

Agreed. Foster had some inopportune fumbles but he was very successful otherwise.

On topic can't wait to see the new look vols!!! I feel like an ole miss fan...excited in the offseason about being good again

Saying Foster had "some inopportune fumbles" is like saying gator fans are mildly annoying...

Both are huge understatements!

NobodyCares (Inactive) writes:

in response to VolChick2009:

That is on the coaching staff and the type of offense, or lack thereof. Do you really think Arian just got that much worse in the course of one season? The whole offense was horrible and the one common denominator was Clawson. It all started with the flip flopping offensive line that never got a grasp on the new scheme.

Sorry VolChick2009, got to disagree. The one common denominator? Phillip Fulmer. From 2000 on, the one person responsible for the downfall of our footVols.

Thanks Phil for your contribution to Vol football, but you overstayed your usefulness.

But now? Beware the Kiffinator!

BSweet writes:

in response to BolivarBob:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Better to get them out of the way now. Coaches will fix it. Probably has something to do with how he's holding the ball.

DC_Vol writes:

The latest report on Tyler Bray. Apparently he is very interested in the Vols and plans a future visit to Knoxville. He also likes all the great recruiting going on as well. Especially the wide receiver committments. Look out! It's great to be a Tennessee Volunteer!!! If we sign Bray our program will be officially turned around. UT will be firmly on their way back to the top of the SEC. Maybe not this year but eventually in a few short years, we will be an elite team again.

http://footballrecruiting.rivals.com/...

Voluvr writes:

Everyone has downplayed and underestimated kiffin since the beginning and he has continually amazed and overachieved every time. He has succeeded in rocking the foundation of college football in 8 months. I don't think this pattern will end when the season starts.

Y'all just remember that it was Voluvr that called it...Florida is going down.

VolChick2009 writes:

in response to XUS_SLOV:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

I bet if you had a girlfriend you would have other things to do instead of posting on other teams' websites.

Maybe some Enzyte or Viagra would help out with your lack of success with the ladies??

jst4tdyvols writes:

welcome to the SEC. I hope Lathers puts the smack down on tebow.

NobodyCares (Inactive) writes:

in response to Voluvr:

Everyone has downplayed and underestimated kiffin since the beginning and he has continually amazed and overachieved every time. He has succeeded in rocking the foundation of college football in 8 months. I don't think this pattern will end when the season starts.

Y'all just remember that it was Voluvr that called it...Florida is going down.

Not everyone has downplayed and underestimated Kiffin. Some of use jumped on the bandwagon real early and will defend with our lives our front row seats. But, we will credit you with the early call ... "Florida is going down."

NobodyCares (Inactive) writes:

in response to XUS_SLOV:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Nice try troll, but you are living proof that you do not need to know anything about football to participate in a football blog. You and Corrine make a great team.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KgbBP9...

Go Gatas! Go Irvin Myers! Go Tim Tivo!

bluetick writes:

Please don't let EB hit him quite yet. Might knock him out for the season.

VolChick2009 writes:

in response to XUS_SLOV:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Name the topic of your desire little man...afraid a girl will show you up?

VolsRaysBucs writes:

This is the way football should be played at all times. Each team/player taking the field has a "will" running out of the tunnel. Physicality is the fastest, most personal way possible to break the opponents will. There is a powerful bonds made on the football practice field. When a teammate slobber knocks a teammate, bonds and respect are formed. There is also a practice etiquete that young Mr. Lathers seems to have already mastered. This coaching staff will have these guys PRACTICING like champions, and that in itself may be the biggest improvement they bring to the Hill.

BTW...first time post, thanks for hearing me out.

movol53 writes:

OMG!!!!! The coaches are letting the players make physical contact??? I was beginning to think (after last year) that UT had started the College Flag Football League; there wasn't much hitting going on or scoring. Looks like things are beginning to get turned around; the older players are welcoming the younger ones to the SEC!!! The young ones need to know "this aint't high school any more". Young runningbacks need to learn ball security; young receivers had better be ready to get hit as they catch the ball and all the young ones had better learn the the SEC is where the speed is; so they better adapt before the games begin. If the coaches are able to "plug a few holes" by putting the best players on the field in the proper positions I believe the Vols will be back this year. Back in the day other teams did fear playing UT - - looks like we are on the road to rebuilding that fear. Since all positions (except #14's) is up for grabs; I hope that we are able to get through the physical practices (which I believe the players need). Go VOLS!!!

VolChick2009 writes:

in response to XUS_SLOV:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Can't defend what statements? That you are a loser with nothing else to do but troll? You make that obvious.

As far as your Raiders comparison goes, if you looked a little deeper you might find why Coach K WAS successful at Oakland. The record was bad, yes. But you have to look at what was handed to him and the progress that was made in one year. They went from a team that didn't even compete to a team that started putting up some points and got some offensive production. The season prior to Kiffin the Raiders only scored around 180 points all year. Under CLK that number jumped to around 290 in one season. Moer proof? Look at USC the year prior to Kiffin and the first year with him. Obviously Coach Carroll and Sark. were there too, but nobody can say that he didn't pick up alot of knowledge while he was there.

As far as RUN DMC goes, it was his first year in the NFL....a little different than being at Arkansas and running the ball out of the wild hog formation every other play. But I would expect someone with your vast knowledge to understand that.

Balls in your court, wee man.

NobodyCares (Inactive) writes:

in response to XUS_SLOV:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Lil' zzgatorboy, you have gotten whacked by every other Vol poster you have tried to challenge, so now you take a shot at VolChick?

You will be whimpering like a baby by morning.

tennezz writes:

Nice to hear Brown acted like nothing happened. He has the right mind frame and they will have him toughened up by game time!

thevoice writes:

Seems UT lacked aggression and 'tude the last few years, rarely seemingly giving 110% in games. Could the problem have been as simple as not practicing like CLK's practices: full speed? I smell 12-0 in the near future.

VolChick2009 writes:

in response to NobodyCares:

Lil' zzgatorboy, you have gotten whacked by every other Vol poster you have tried to challenge, so now you take a shot at VolChick?

You will be whimpering like a baby by morning.

He whines about "name calling" yet has a user name that a 10 year old would call unoriginal.

Still playing your Pink Floyd records backwards too?

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