Berry trying to keep up with brothers

Many expected Eric Berry to laugh off the question.

Surely the report that his 13-year-old brother, Evan Berry, had committed to Tennessee was just recruiting coverage gone amuck. Not so, said the UT junior safety.

“To be honest with you, he actually committed before I did,” said Berry, who committed to UT in December 2006. “I did the little interview on TV and he just committed then, too. I guess nobody saw it but he committed then.”

Eric Berry said he’s feeling the heat from Evan and his twin brother, Elliot, who reportedly prefers LSU. Evan recently ran the 100 meters in 11.25 seconds. Elliot ran the 200 in 22.33. A competition between the three brothers has already been set up.

“I’ve been trying to get ready for them,” Eric Berry said. “We’ve got a race supposedly coming up next year.”

It’s hard to compare Eric’s speed to Evan or Elliot. Eric Berry didn’t run track. He played baseball when he wasn’t starring on the football field. According to Eric, speed isn’t the only thing the brothers have going for them.

“They do pushups and sit-ups every night so I’m trying to keep up with those guys,” he said.

Surviving The Slump: Kicker Daniel Lincoln has taken a number of steps to return to his freshman form after a disappointing sophomore season.

The junior has reached out to former UT kickers Fuad Reveiz, Jeff Hall and James Wilhoit.

“To find out what I did wrong or what I needed to change,” said Lincoln, who was 10-of-18 for 55.6 percent in 2008.

Lincoln said he’s tried to focus on flexibility more than strength this off-season. He’s also trying to fine-tune his mental approach to kicking in hopes of putting less pressure on himself.

“That’s something I’ve dealt with and tried to temper a little bit,” Wilhoit said. “I definitely put a lot of pressure on myself. There’s so much pressure around Tennessee football and what goes on in a game. I think I’ve paid too much attention to that.”

Lincoln said he is trying to make kicking fun. He seemed to be having fun his freshman year, when he was 21-of-29 for 72.4 percent.

“Once you take the pressure away,” Lincoln said, “it’s fun.”

Lincoln also attended a retreat in Colorado, along with three teammates: linebacker Nick Reveiz, punter Chad Cunningham and defensive end Chris Walker.

The objective was to help student-athletes cope with the pressure they regularly face. For 19 hours, campers weren’t allowed to eat or sleep and then were forced to climb a mountain.

“It was definitely a great experience for all of us,” Lincoln said.

All of off-season preparation is designed to help Lincoln relax.

“It’s just another kick,” Lincoln said, reciting what he should be thinking before a field goal attempt. “Now just do it. Don’t put so much pressure on yourself. You’ve trained for it. You should be prepared. There’s nothing to think about.”

Lincoln said he decided against seeing a sports psychologist, as many other UT kickers have done.

“Whenever you start thinking too much about this, that’s when things start going wrong … I don’t think I needed to mess with that,” Lincoln said.

Crompton’s Cause: Quarterback Jonathan Crompton said he appreciated the response from UT fans after the News Sentinel reported in May that he received death threats last fall.

Crompton said the response was encouraging but added that he was ready to put the 2008 season behind him.

“I appreciate all the … apologies from everybody that sent them,” Crompton said. “But we’re looking forward to this year and hope they are too.”

Well Respected: Senior tailback Montario Hardesty said he doesn’t feel overlooked because fans and media are often fixated on highly rated freshman tailbacks Bryce Brown and David Oku.

“I’ve got the respect of this team so it’s all good,” Hardesty said.

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Comments » 21

golfballs03 writes:

I think you can "commit" to something without involving the NCAA.

beachvol1 writes:

Maybe the Berry's can get a step on it...love to have them all but that ain't going to happen....Hardesty is the man, played thru numberous injuries and still there...never complains..just works hard....kicking game, yes, needs improvement but will get there...special teams, needs all the help we can get....it will all work out and the program will be back on it's feet, if not this yr, next and the next..beware Gators and Tide.....

bluetick writes:

I wish I could be there to see that race. His brothers have a long way to go before reaching College. Anything could happen between now and then. Here is hoping LK and company turn this program around and they will be begging to be recruited by Rocky Top.

Good Lincoln is doing something about his kicking game. Sure was a let down to see him last season missing so many. I think it became more of a mental game.

EB for Heisman!

CoachNeyland writes:

I would give anything to see Eric Berry totally smash Marlon Brown coming across the middle...

HallowedHill writes:

I love Hardesty's attitude - this is your year!

Jillelumpkins writes:

Montario, you have the respect from me! You're a beast, good luck this season, show them boys how to run in the SEC!

mbradshaw1#655539 writes:

This year doesn't have to be much better to top last year. Hardly anything went right last year, from the kicking game to the running and passing games. The defensive numbers would have been better if not for so many 3 and outs. Watching the Auburn game last year was excruciating because it seemed like neither team wanted to win the game. JC is right to forget about last year and it seems they have judging by all the work the players are putting in now.

GO VOLS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

lildhoss76ut#638162 writes:

"our guys are workin like heck" oh wait my bad different coach.Good luck guys.GO VOLS!

gnm53108 writes:

in response to HallowedHill:

I love Hardesty's attitude - this is your year!

Agree.

1500+ yrds.This is Hardesty's and our o-line's breakout year.

BigOrangeVol writes:

19 hours and a hike? C'mon Chad, Hell Week is 132 hours with continuous training in the harshest conditions and environments imaginable; surely you could make it for 24 hours!

HooYah!

BigOrangeVol writes:

Should have added Dan, Nick & Chris to that.

TDTN writes:

I remember a year that due to injuries our running game got not respect preseason. Then Tony Thompson came out of nowhere and led the conference in rushing that season. I would love to see Hardesty do that and end his career on a positive note.

ColeTrickle writes:

in response to Pablopeepants:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

I agree UT will be at the top of the SEC in rushing. We have an experienced NFL size line and really good line coaches in Chaney and Kregg. also our backfield is so deep this year. if all the schemes are easier to understand for the players and the offense is flowing smoother, which seems to be what players are saying, then it is very very likely.

Kevinyaheard writes:

I think we will definately be in the top of most rushing categories, especially attempts, but the problem comes along if that is the only thing we can do. If we average 150 a game on the ground but only put up 150 yards through the air, then we are still in the gutter of the SEC in total yardage....But, on a lighter note, I do have confidence that the QB this year, whoever it may be, will be at the very least a Kerry Collins type of "game manager" who can get the job done. I'm just glad that the CLAWFENSE is out of town.... GO VOLS!!!!

AllVol2008#1353998 writes:

in response to CoachNeyland:

I would give anything to see Eric Berry totally smash Marlon Brown coming across the middle...

Put me on that list, too, please.

AllVol2008#1353998 writes:

in response to Witch_Doctor:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

I say credit where it is due--to Tebow and Eric. Tebow is kind of a goofball, but who wouldn't want him?

ctownvol writes:

in response to DCFloridaGator:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Nice post DC.

johnlg00 writes:

in response to BigOrangeVol:

19 hours and a hike? C'mon Chad, Hell Week is 132 hours with continuous training in the harshest conditions and environments imaginable; surely you could make it for 24 hours!

HooYah!

Lincoln never claimed the retreat was SEAL "Hell Week". It was a retreat for college athletes, most of which was far less physically-oriented. Besides, he is a KICKER, for goodness sakes(;-P)!

I hope it did him some good. I was interested to see where he said that he often felt "tight" during games last year. He LOOKED tight, both physically and mentally; his kicking motion looked quick and punchy to me compared to some of the better kickers I have seen. We NEED him to regain his freshman form this year; I have a feeling points will be at a premium for this team, at least in the early going.

DennisVols writes:

The Past is to be learned from. It can not be changed only repeated if we failed to learn.
The Present is to install the lessons we have learned from the past.
The Future is to make all the changes we failed to do in our past, exceeding the goals others may have set before us.

GerryOP writes:

Sorry guys, I can't resist repeating this story one more time!

Daniel Lincoln was doing pretty dang good until late in his Freshman season when he missed a couple of chippies. His Head Coach make a big deal about detecting a "minor flaw" in his approach to the ball. His Head Coach corrected the "minor flaw" and the kid has never regained his early season excellence.

Dang, I gotta' forget Big Ol' Doofus!

tenncorncob writes:

in response to TDTN:

I remember a year that due to injuries our running game got not respect preseason. Then Tony Thompson came out of nowhere and led the conference in rushing that season. I would love to see Hardesty do that and end his career on a positive note.

He replaced Chuck Webb who would have had 2,000 yards and would have won the Heistman.....if Chuck had not gotten injured in the first home game. I also believe we would have won a National Championship that year with Chuck Webb.

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