Prospects warm up to UT shirt-ripping stunt

As one of the elite prospects in the Class of 2010, tight end Brian Vogler is busy with the business of recruiting.

Last week, he attended Alabama’s junior day in Tuscaloosa before making the trip to Knoxville last weekend as Tennessee played host to nearly 100 junior prospects.

The two experiences, though, couldn’t have been much more different.

“Yeah, I would definitely say they’re two completely different types of junior days,” Vogler, a 6-foot-7 tight end from Brookstone School in Columbus, Ga., said in a telephone interview Monday.

Tennessee’s junior day took a divergent path when UT’s coaches brought the prospects into a large meeting room Saturday afternoon. As parents boarded buses for a tour of Neyland Stadium, UT coach Lane Kiffin spoke to the prospects before turning things over to UT’s special teams coaches.

“They started talking about how important special teams was to winning games, and next thing you know, one of the assistant special teams coaches is just ripping his shirt off like Superman,” Vogler said. “Some of the other coaches were ripping their shirts off. They did it three times, I think.”

At first, Vogler and the others were a bit confused.

“Nobody really knew how to respond so the coaches were like telling us to stand up,” Vogler said. “We were all standing up, and they told us, ‘We can do better than that.’ ”

As Vogler tells it, two or three coaches left the room and the lights were dimmed in the meeting room.

“They came running through the door and everybody left from their seats and came to the middle, starting jumping around, yelling ‘UT! UT!’ Then they said it was pretty good, but we probably could have done better,” he said. “So Coach O (recruiting coordinator Ed Orgeron) goes up there to start talking and then about halfway through the coaches come busting through the door again, and everybody does the same thing.”

Vogler, who has about 14 scholarship offers including ones from Tennessee, LSU, Auburn and Alabama, said he and his fellow visitors warmed to UT’s enthusiasm.

“We didn’t know how to react (at first),” Vogler said. “We were all just standing there like, ‘Oh my God, what’s going on?’ We all got pretty hyped up at the end of it.”

Vogler said about 15 UT players were in the room at the time, including All-American safety Eric Berry. By the end, those players were chanting with the recruits as well.

“When all that took place, all the coaches taking their shirts off and stuff, there were players in the back of the room with us, and they came running up there with us when we went up there,” Vogler said. “Eric Berry, he talked and I guess he ended up sticking around for most of the day because he was in there with us.”

Despite his initial shock at the move, Vogler, who hopes to commit before his senior season begins this fall, said the experience opened his eyes towards Tennessee.

“For me, I didn’t really know all that much about Tennessee,” Vogler said. “Them coming in with all these new coaches, you don’t really know what to expect. I would definitely say it’s beneficial for me going up to that junior day. I learned a lot about the school, I learned a lot about the coaches, got to meet some of the players.

“It was just really beneficial for me. I think that really helped them out a lot with that junior day, how it was run.”

That seemed to be the case for some other prospects who attended UT’s junior day, including defensive lineman Garrison Smith from Douglass High School in Atlanta.

“I loved it, especially when that coach ripped off his shirt like The Incredible Hulk,” Smith said, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “It was high intensity. I enjoyed the whole day. They (Tennessee) definitely moved up on my list.”

Denzel McCoy, a defensive lineman from Northview High School, told the AJC he liked it as well.

“It was kind of crazy, but it was cool,” McCoy said. “Coach Kiffin is trying to get everyone fired up about Tennessee football, and it worked. He had everyone in that room fired up.”

And for Vogler, the connection extended beyond that high energy recruits-only meeting.

He spent time with tackles and tight ends coach James Cregg, who showed him film of how the Vols plan to use their tight ends and explained some of the Vols’ blocking techniques and routes tight ends would run.

Vogler left Knoxville with a comfort level around UT’s coaches, especially Cregg and Kiffin.

“I really like the coaches they have up there,” he said. “I got to talk to Coach Cregg, and I got to connect with him real well. I got to talk to some of the other coaches, and that was nice.

“Every now and then, Coach Kiffin would say something to me when we’d been walking or something. Around some other head coaches, I’m sort of tightened up and sort of afraid to talk. But I felt comfortable around him.”

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

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Comments » 354

Digger writes:

Whatever it takes to get these kids in here! I love it!

Moaninglikeheck writes:

Is this a joke?

ckwhite writes:

Phil who?

Waldorf writes:

I'm just thankful Foolmore never took his shirt off.

orangesox writes:

“I loved it especially when that coach ripped off his shirt like The Incredible Hulk,” Smith said, according to the Atlanta Journal Constitution. “It was high intensity. I enjoyed the whole day. They (Tennessee) definitely moved up on my list.”

This is what we want to hear coming from these kids. The approach might be a little unorthodox, but if it gets results I'm all for it.

Moaninglikeheck writes:

in response to Digger:

Whatever it takes to get these kids in here! I love it!

Yeah, I guess. Maybe I'm a little old school but it seems like if the Xs and Os don't get em, stunts like this are good for laughs but serious players aren't going to buy it.

Kiffin_fan writes:

Keep em coming coaches!!!!! Go Vols!!!!! This is gonna be a great ride, ya'll hang on now ya' hear???

golfballs03 writes:

in response to Moaninglikeheck:

Yeah, I guess. Maybe I'm a little old school but it seems like if the Xs and Os don't get em, stunts like this are good for laughs but serious players aren't going to buy it.

Yeah, I'm sure they just started this when they got here to Tennessee.

I wonder if Bruce Pearl was in anyway involved with this...

Volchaz writes:

Sounds like we made an impression.. Point made, well done.

RoyaltyVol writes:

Don't make CLK angry, you wouldn't like him if he was angry!

CoachFulmer writes:

I can't wait for the comments from gatorzzz and the rest of his fudge pirates afet this subject. Whatever signs recruits works for me. GO VOLS!

RoyaltyVol writes:

I'm glad coach Fulmer never ripped off his shirt, ewww!

imw8n4u writes:

I like that they saw this as night and day compared to the Alabubba junior day, theirs must have been a real snooze fest.

orangevolz writes:

in response to Moaninglikeheck:

Yeah, I guess. Maybe I'm a little old school but it seems like if the Xs and Os don't get em, stunts like this are good for laughs but serious players aren't going to buy it.

Serious players aren't going to buy it??? You gotta be kidding me...all the recruits loved it. I am old school too, but this was brilliant!

Eric_Freaking_Berry writes:

Based on our recent recruiting, maybe Fulmer and Chavis did take their shirts off.

orangevolz writes:

in response to VolunteerFear:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Great story KNS. Keep um coming. I subscribe to rivals and they do a good job, just like KNS does.

Docrok writes:

"Despite the initial shock at the move, Vogler, who hopes to commit before his junior season, said the experience opened his eyes toward Tennessee."

I thought he was already a junior??????????

orangevolz writes:

in response to gatorzz:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

OK idiot. Have you been reading what the recruits said? THEY LOVED IT!!!!! They loved it, just like we loved the basketball game last night. It was a blast!!

GoVols_16 writes:

People wanted change. This is change. I still want to see a disciplined, hard-nosed product on the field this Fall.

If they do that, Monte can walk up and down the sidelines in a Speedo & flip-flops for all I care.

Waldorf writes:

in response to gatorzz:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Kinda like how your coach decided to jump in the pool with some of his players last year? God only knows what happened then that he didn't tell the press.

Let me guess - he was having family medical problems then, right and needed to relax?

Loser.

govolsnt writes:

I am afraid we have hired a bunch of idiots for coaches...here's hoping their x's and o's are as unique as their willingness to be publicly laughed at

Docrok writes:

in response to GoVols_16:

People wanted change. This is change. I still want to see a disciplined, hard-nosed product on the field this Fall.

If they do that, Monte can walk up and down the sidelines in a Speedo & flip-flops for all I care.

Hey I agree, and I think we will see that! The discipline began day 1. And he is holding his players to a higher standard! Plus the conditioning is far more intense!

TommyJack writes:

in response to VolunteerFear:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

He can't stop, VF. It's in his DNA.

Bloodrunzorange writes:

in response to VolunteerFear:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

They are doing their best...like McNeil. Just kidding, don't get mad! Later. Go Vols!

RoyaltyVol writes:

in response to gatorzz:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Is little gatorzz still mad about the butt whipping in da swamp yesterday? Its ok to cry, after all your a gator, so cry those crockadile tears zz.

lastlap writes:

in response to gatorzz:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Sort of like your post there gatorzz. Wait has urbie been crying? Couldn't he rip his shirt? Did Tebow have to do it for him? Should we be preparing an apology? Thought I would be childish too.

BigOrangeBrain writes:

BigOrangeBrain say : Just a male bonding thing done for fun and excitement, kind of like drinking a RedBull with the guys at fightnight. No harm done, just an effective technique ( see USC). Guys got to blow off steam. Let Richt have all the choirboys. BigOrangeBrain said so.

GoVols_16 writes:

in response to Docrok:

Hey I agree, and I think we will see that! The discipline began day 1. And he is holding his players to a higher standard! Plus the conditioning is far more intense!

Coach Kiff could help the cause by disciplining his mouth, too!

orangevolz writes:

in response to gatorzz:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Gatorzzzzzz - No wonder everyone hates your guts. Out of curiosity, I clicked on your screen name and it shows you have over 2000 posts. That is unbelievable for an idiot Gator fan to be on a UT list all day long. Either you are unemployed, cutting junior high classes, or you are taking advantage of your employer by posting all day long to this list instead of working. We already knew you did not have a life, but when I saw over 2000 posts, that just confirmed everything I thought about you. Wow is all I can say. Good luck getting your life back together. Seriously, have you ever posted anything on a Gator list? I just don't see how you could fit it in your busy schedule.

mattfriedman58#226364 writes:

in response to Moaninglikeheck:

Yeah, I guess. Maybe I'm a little old school but it seems like if the Xs and Os don't get em, stunts like this are good for laughs but serious players aren't going to buy it.

When will you people start looking outside the box a little??? This wasn't a 'stunt', it represents the new level of enthusiasm inspired by the new coaching staff. They're trying to find ways to fire people up about the program... and based on the comments, it seems to be working. So until you come up with a more effective system for recruiting, I'd suggest you think before you speak in the future. They get paid well because they know what they're doing... you don't!

jsmithnga#207674 writes:

Seems this was/is done at Southern Cal with apparent good results based on their record and without making the papers. Only at UT in the SEC is this news worthy.

ETSU_Vol writes:

does anyone know about the new news about orson charles? im not a member to totaluga so i dont know what it says. it could be good or bad

http://totaluga.com/news/articles/200...

orangevolz writes:

in response to mattfriedman58#226364:

When will you people start looking outside the box a little??? This wasn't a 'stunt', it represents the new level of enthusiasm inspired by the new coaching staff. They're trying to find ways to fire people up about the program... and based on the comments, it seems to be working. So until you come up with a more effective system for recruiting, I'd suggest you think before you speak in the future. They get paid well because they know what they're doing... you don't!

Agree. The post was probably from a Fulmerite who was happy with the way things were...old school equals the good ole days. Oops, wait...were they even good? I am a 60-year old old school guy who happens to recognize something special is going on at UT now. I can't wait.

Go4Two writes:

in response to Waldorf:

I'm just thankful Foolmore never took his shirt off.

I'm sure when coach Fulmer is inducted into the College football hall of Fame some posters will still be using goofy names. Let it go..It's Kiffins boat now.

invisiblekid writes:

in response to wallandhiker:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Bingo. Not exactly my cup of tea either but if it gets the same results as USC, I am all for it:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9rDe-Z...

dma38256#264746 writes:

in response to gatorzz:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Just like this post?

GreenDevilVol writes:

in response to gatorzz:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Gator azz,that was only part of the entertainment,the guest speaker was at loss for words;no wonder, no one would of believed him anyway.That and due to the fact that he cant do a thing without Foley,Slive, and Beblow up his azz !!!!!!!!!

http://bleacherreport.com/articles/37...

orangevolz writes:

in response to rammerjammer987:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Damn right, it is funny! It is also cool and it is working. The recruits loved it. Kiffin has not won a game yet, but he is laying a foundation for something very special. It may take 2-3 years, but when it happens, the SEC and the rest of the country will feel it big time. While other schools may laugh at what is going on at UT, we are loving every minute of it. Kiffin knows exactly what he is doing and the best thing about him is that he doesn't give a damn what others think.

dma38256#264746 writes:

One thing about it, these guys are going to be wondering "What's going on at UT?" all year long.....

GreenDevilVol writes:

in response to gatorzz:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

lil-gatorzz, the idiot that wont quit giving !!!!!!!!!!

GreenDevilVol writes:

in response to rammerjammer987:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

looks like Lane is accomplishing one thing; having you rammers and gatorzz checking up on UT,worried I would be if I were you !!!

I hear that Saban wears TeBLOW p.j's !!!!!!!!!!

VolPatrick writes:

The players seem to have liked it, so I'm all in favor of it. It is a significant point that this atmosphere was completely different from the one Alabama offered. Coach Kiffin is creating a brand identity for his program, which is going to be along the lines of Fun within Discipline. They are creating something that stands out against the competition, which is a must when all the schools have great facilities and high profile staffs. I am just hoping that the staff is genuinely like this and isn't trying to force an atmosphere. If they are really all fire eaters, we are going to be in for a fun ride. I mean, is it a staff full of Trooper Taylors? That type of energy is transformational.

cjraney writes:

in response to rammerjammer987:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Not until you quit acting like our new staff has already failed. There will be plenty of opportunity to judge after next season.

kabzs writes:

First time I can remember anybody associated with UT football has been excited about special teams.

Should be good for at least 2 wins each upcoming season.

Mansonlamps writes:

I love this and hope they keep it up. They can do anything "un-traditional" at UT except play Zombie Nation over the loudspeakers at Neyland. If that happens then I'm going to get another hobby. Only Germans and queers like that stuff.

notoriousBIGorange writes:

in response to gatorzz:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

VolPatrick writes:

As for gatorzz, a lot of people criticized or just plain mocked Coach Bruce Pearl when he went oranged-up to that UT women's game a few years ago. He is energetic, a bit crazy, and his results are substantial. Need I say more? Of course not, and it has been nice not seeing you and your friends in the basketball threads this year. Have fun in the Not Invited Tournament.

GreenDevilVol writes:

in response to rammerjammer987:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Worried, I'm not worried. Just like the last 17 years of Bama football !!!!!!!!!!

MidTennVol writes:

Okay, in case there was any lingering doubt, Mike Hamilton has completely bet the farm (and his career at UT) on this show. For better or worse.

Like all of you, I just hope these coaches can field a proud, disciplined, smart, strong, winning, intimidating, fast, quick, mean, nasty and hungry football team this fall.

If they do that, I don't care if Ogre streaks down Kingston Pike.

Ten wins, guys. Ten wins.

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