Vols busy with mock objects

Dooley finds ‘26 things’ to clean up

Everything up to kickoff was on the script, and everybody had a chance to read it.

From then on, only Tennessee coach Derek Dooley and his coordinators knew what was coming next.

Even some of the coaching staff was kept in the dark to keep UT on its toes as it tried its best to make Wednesday night’s mock game at Neyland Stadium a reasonable simulation of the real thing. And though there were slip-ups from players, the coaches and maybe even the video crew, collectively the Vols seemed to come away convinced their young roster was now better prepared for their opener next week against UT Martin.

“I think it was great,” senior linebacker Nick Reveiz said. “Personally, I’ve never done anything like that. We did something similar last year, but I think this was a good thing. I think Coach Dooley was looking steps ahead because we did everything from the Vol Walk to having all the times down in the locker room (during pre-game), how much time you need to get your pads on. Those details are important, because they can be things that can throw you off.

“The situations in the scrimmage were awesome because it kept you on your toes. You had to be listening, you had to be into the game, so I felt that was a good warm-up for Saturdays.”

Dooley did everything he could to keep the Vols off balance, throwing virtually all the situations UT might face at them during the light, approximately one-hour workout.

The first two units had to try an onside kick and also recover one. The Vols had to return a free kick after a safety, try a last-minute field goal with only a few seconds to get it off and also trot out the victory formation and work on taking a knee.

They also did just about everything in between, and all of it without any advance warning about what was coming at them.

“(It’s) just being tuned into the changes in a game,” Dooley said from the same podium where he would address the media after a real game. “Special teams changes, offense-defense sudden change, so learning to be locked into the game and the situation so we don’t have any personnel problems. We had two occasions out there, one time we went from Nickel to goal-line, we got 12 guys on the field, we had a couple sideline issues … that’s why we do that.

“That’s the mental part of it, because you don’t get that in practice. You just have these periods that you work on, so that was the other reason it was good.”

Without any real prompting, Dooley admitted that good work might not really have made the Vols any better on the field, particularly since there was little physical contact and position battles for the most part have been settled.

But in terms of preparation, the entire program is likely more comfortable with how a game day will be operated. And Dooley also was able to make a laundry list of areas to improve on thanks to the test run.

“This is why we do this — 26 things I wrote down that we’ve got to clean up administratively, not football-wise,” he said. “I’m just talking about administration with coaches’ headsets, adjustments and how we do things.

“I told the players they were very professional about it and they approached it the right way. I think we got a lot accomplished. We didn’t really get better as a football team, but we got a lot done in the hopes that the first game we can play well. That’s what we were here for.”

And the next time they’re all back, the Vols will know what to expect.

Plus or minus a few more faces and a lot more noise.

“Of course, you’re trying to get as close as you can,” Reveiz said. “You can’t factor in 100,000 people screaming and crying, but I think they did a great job.”

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Comments » 53

eloist writes:

first! go vols!

bluetick writes:

Oh yea baby! I smell football in the air. Can't wait to see how well they do in the first game. GO VOLS!

bluetick writes:

in response to eloist:

first! go vols!

Congrats Mr. 1 post a year! You win absolutely nothing. :)

AtLeastMyTeamHasPerfectSeasons writes:

Since the entire month of September is in knoxville, they will have this down in no time.

NorthwestVol writes:

As we all know it will come down to wins and losses, but it's hard not to like this guy.

OrangePsyched writes:

Hope to see our offense go into victory formation a lot this year. ROCKY TOP!

The7Maxims writes:

Being prepared always helps. No, you can't really duplicate game time situations, but you can know as much about your opponent and your course of action as possible.

Maxim 1: The team that makes the fewest mistakes will win.

ThaiVolFan writes:

having this young team, either in age or in experience, get a good feel for the game day flow is actually going to really be a big factor in settling the nerves and having our younger guys ready to focus on the task at hand. I think that this will help translate to a solid UTM game with fewer mental miscues. We all know that the game itself is nothing much more than a walk through for Oregon. Oregon will be prep for Florida. I think CDD is setting this teams and staffs preparation progressions well. We should see that at each stage as the pressure increases and the talent becomes stiffer we will be improving AHEAD of the learning the curve instead of BEHIND. I can remember so many times in the past where we seem to learn that one thing a hair too late after the Florida game is over. I for one am ready to see a team prepared and AHEAD of the curve. I think upsets and surprises are in store for us this year. Doing things the right way, with integrity, honor and respect this year will cause the football to go through the uprights and not into the boobs of big Cody. That my friend was Kiffboy karma. Dooley's way is the right way.
GO BIG ORANGE!

The7Maxims writes:

Being prepared never hurt anybody. It leads to fewer mistakes.

Maxim # 1: The team that makes the fewest mistakes will win.

andy112382#209793 writes:

It's this kind of stuff and the conditioning that Bennie put the guys through that can make things swing your way in a close one. Sounds like, depth issues or not, no one will say we weren't prepared and didn't know how to do the little things, and heck...that'll get you one or two wins the 'experts' dont think you can pull off more often than not. We're in good hands it sounds like. Go Vols!!!

VolTennisFan writes:

The best athletic program on campus last year was the men's tennis team. It will be that way again this year. A tennis player beat out Eric Berry at the Volscars as the top male athlete. Pretty impressive. I suggest we start thinking about a little tennis!

ThaiVolFan writes:

in response to VolTennisFan:

The best athletic program on campus last year was the men's tennis team. It will be that way again this year. A tennis player beat out Eric Berry at the Volscars as the top male athlete. Pretty impressive. I suggest we start thinking about a little tennis!

Glad the tennis program is doing well...maybe we should put down the clay and put up the net inside of Neyland. Do you think 100,000 strong will still be screaming. There is a reason why tennis facilities are so small :)
IT'S FOOTBALL TIME IN TENNESSEE!

midgetangel#279179 writes:

Let me get this right. They went through this little side show, albeit somewhat necessary. He "found 26 things to work on". Yet, "we didn't really get better as a team". THAT BOTHERS ME!!! What is the point? I thought the point WAS to get better as a team. I thought August was the month to use every available opportunity to get better. I thought the side show was a good idea. But when CDD says that we DIDN'T get better as a team, does that mean that the side show was a waste of time? Granted we are getting ready for UT-Martin, but it's the other September games that I hope this "investment" pays out on!! Hopefully we are a MUCH better team by then. Go Vols!!!

tree_em_smokey writes:

The main thing I'm worried about offensively is "false starts". You know defences are gonna be moving around a lot to make our young line jump. Just hope they stay calm and watch the ball. The line doesn't have to play awesome for us to win, they just have to minimize errors. Go Vols!

UTByrd writes:

in response to ThaiVolFan:

having this young team, either in age or in experience, get a good feel for the game day flow is actually going to really be a big factor in settling the nerves and having our younger guys ready to focus on the task at hand. I think that this will help translate to a solid UTM game with fewer mental miscues. We all know that the game itself is nothing much more than a walk through for Oregon. Oregon will be prep for Florida. I think CDD is setting this teams and staffs preparation progressions well. We should see that at each stage as the pressure increases and the talent becomes stiffer we will be improving AHEAD of the learning the curve instead of BEHIND. I can remember so many times in the past where we seem to learn that one thing a hair too late after the Florida game is over. I for one am ready to see a team prepared and AHEAD of the curve. I think upsets and surprises are in store for us this year. Doing things the right way, with integrity, honor and respect this year will cause the football to go through the uprights and not into the boobs of big Cody. That my friend was Kiffboy karma. Dooley's way is the right way.
GO BIG ORANGE!

Can I get an Amen! Very well put.
Go VOLS!!!!!

ibvolman writes:

in response to midgetangel#279179:

Let me get this right. They went through this little side show, albeit somewhat necessary. He "found 26 things to work on". Yet, "we didn't really get better as a team". THAT BOTHERS ME!!! What is the point? I thought the point WAS to get better as a team. I thought August was the month to use every available opportunity to get better. I thought the side show was a good idea. But when CDD says that we DIDN'T get better as a team, does that mean that the side show was a waste of time? Granted we are getting ready for UT-Martin, but it's the other September games that I hope this "investment" pays out on!! Hopefully we are a MUCH better team by then. Go Vols!!!

I would suspect that CDD meant from a technical aspect on the field they didn't get better. That is understandable seeing that the whole mock gameday was conducted without any real contact, and they were not going through the plays as in a "real" practice.

From a mental aspect, it probably did help the team, coaches, video crews, and anyone else who will be involved in this situation. The players should know what to expect come game time in K-town. How many times have the Vols taken the field to start the season, and seemed unprepared, nervous, or had the "deer in the headlights" look? I have seen that too many times, and perhaps this is what the team needs to remove the early season jitters.

CDD knows what he is doing. Remember that he did work under Saban for several years. He just might have picked up on a few things during that time.

govols1234567 writes:

in response to VolTennisFan:

The best athletic program on campus last year was the men's tennis team. It will be that way again this year. A tennis player beat out Eric Berry at the Volscars as the top male athlete. Pretty impressive. I suggest we start thinking about a little tennis!

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!

oh wait you're serious??

CoverOrange writes:

Maybe, just maybe, their won't be anyone yelling: "where's my...?", "who was supposed to...?", "when was...?", "how did that happen?".

I keep thinking of that onsides kick by Bama on the opening kickoff. Preparation.

Fulton_Vol writes:

I believe this mock up was a good thing. You take a young team and show them how it's done. You make sure that while you want the team fired up on games day they have details that need to taken care of too. You want to show them the speed of the college game and how fast things can change it it.Yes, they understand some because this isn't their first merry-go-round the stage just got a lot bigger and these details are important.

Are they suppose to stand, next to their position coaches, the O or D coordinator, or as a skill player are they by CD2? These small details can mean the different in a penalty or sack. Who, what, where, when and why are the mental part of the game and they are some of the little things that if you work them and prepare help you take of the big thing...winning the football game. Good job Vols on the preparing for this. Go CD2 and Go Vols!

VolsINFan writes:

I can hardly wait to see the team take the field and lay the lumber on teams. I am still convinced this team will sneak up on a lot of the so called "experts" who do not give the Vols much of a chance for any success this season.

Go Vols!

TommyJack writes:

in response to CoverOrange:

Maybe, just maybe, their won't be anyone yelling: "where's my...?", "who was supposed to...?", "when was...?", "how did that happen?".

I keep thinking of that onsides kick by Bama on the opening kickoff. Preparation.

As I recall, FHCPF said that the onside kick had no bearing on the game.

feathersax writes:

PREPARATION!! I like how CDD is approaching this vital aspect; it could spell "victory" in games the Vols are expected to lose. No more hand-clapping after bonehead plays!

TennVol01 writes:

This was an uplifting article. Well written. Makes me look forward to Sept 4th even more. Go VOLS.

Willis writes:

9 DAYS TILL FOOTBALL TIME IN TENNESSEE!!!!!!!

givehim6 writes:

I can remember a few games were it looked like UT on paper were the better team but we just were playing with our heads up our butts and almost lost the game. We have almost lost to UK this way a few years, I think this will help us greatly. CDD is on the ball.

OTPVol writes:

I have a feeling, given the chance, Coach Dooley, in three or four years, will be awfully hard to replace in Big Orange Country, even by Peyton Manning. I think we got us a winner..., a keeper for sure! And his Momma too!

TennHillbilly writes:

in response to The7Maxims:

Being prepared never hurt anybody. It leads to fewer mistakes.

Maxim # 1: The team that makes the fewest mistakes will win.

Glad to see CDD doesn't want to be another Les Miles. :)

movol77 writes:

in response to midgetangel#279179:

Let me get this right. They went through this little side show, albeit somewhat necessary. He "found 26 things to work on". Yet, "we didn't really get better as a team". THAT BOTHERS ME!!! What is the point? I thought the point WAS to get better as a team. I thought August was the month to use every available opportunity to get better. I thought the side show was a good idea. But when CDD says that we DIDN'T get better as a team, does that mean that the side show was a waste of time? Granted we are getting ready for UT-Martin, but it's the other September games that I hope this "investment" pays out on!! Hopefully we are a MUCH better team by then. Go Vols!!!

Go read "Coaching 101" save yourself some grief.

vol88 writes:

What was the score? I had Tennessee minus 6.5 against Mock.

Sorcerer writes:

VOLS now better prepared for battle on game day. Coach does it right.

smoky50 writes:

in response to ThaiVolFan:

having this young team, either in age or in experience, get a good feel for the game day flow is actually going to really be a big factor in settling the nerves and having our younger guys ready to focus on the task at hand. I think that this will help translate to a solid UTM game with fewer mental miscues. We all know that the game itself is nothing much more than a walk through for Oregon. Oregon will be prep for Florida. I think CDD is setting this teams and staffs preparation progressions well. We should see that at each stage as the pressure increases and the talent becomes stiffer we will be improving AHEAD of the learning the curve instead of BEHIND. I can remember so many times in the past where we seem to learn that one thing a hair too late after the Florida game is over. I for one am ready to see a team prepared and AHEAD of the curve. I think upsets and surprises are in store for us this year. Doing things the right way, with integrity, honor and respect this year will cause the football to go through the uprights and not into the boobs of big Cody. That my friend was Kiffboy karma. Dooley's way is the right way.
GO BIG ORANGE!

I totally agree. I drank the Kiffaid like a lot of people. We drank from it in hopes of more wins against bama, gators, lsu. CDD has this program in a complete turn around in terms of preperation, honor, respect, and integrity. No doubt he was the right choice and there will be surprises and stunners in this season, win wise. I just hope he gets them over the 3rd and whatever curse that has haunted us for the last 10 years. Third down conversions are VERY IMPORTANT for this young team, as any.

holleyab writes:

in response to The7Maxims:

Being prepared never hurt anybody. It leads to fewer mistakes.

Maxim # 1: The team that makes the fewest mistakes will win.

Absolutely true. If they can fight away the freshmen jitters, then this team could do something special. When you are picked fifth and not given a prayer, teams tend to overlook you. I think they can pull it together and shock a few teams.

GBO!

can't wait to be shouting "GIVE HIM SIX"

gwills228#231210 writes:

this makes for great reading,but,does it really make you a better football team? and i still say,that we will be looking for a new coach this time next year if georgia doesn't win big this year!!

monsterman writes:

Good idea. It is the little things that distract. I think it is a very good investment for the future home games.

9krpms writes:

CDD is a task master, being prepared always makes you better. I love how thorough he is. As Peytong once said, nervousness is something you feel when you're unprepared. It's going to be a long tough season, but these little things might be the difference in making a bowl game this year.

volsnationalchamps writes:

in response to VolTennisFan:

The best athletic program on campus last year was the men's tennis team. It will be that way again this year. A tennis player beat out Eric Berry at the Volscars as the top male athlete. Pretty impressive. I suggest we start thinking about a little tennis!

Great that tennis is doing well. UT has as strong athletic dept. as anyone. Football though is life in E.TN, even as great as b-ball is now will never pass UT FOOTBALL... Root for all Vols though. Keep us posted on how tennis team does.

GO VOLS!!!

richvol writes:

Another example of the Dooley genious...preparation,preparation,detail,detail.

volsnationalchamps writes:

in response to AF1A4:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Good point... One thing they should've done agreed.

volsnationalchamps writes:

in response to midgetangel#279179:

Let me get this right. They went through this little side show, albeit somewhat necessary. He "found 26 things to work on". Yet, "we didn't really get better as a team". THAT BOTHERS ME!!! What is the point? I thought the point WAS to get better as a team. I thought August was the month to use every available opportunity to get better. I thought the side show was a good idea. But when CDD says that we DIDN'T get better as a team, does that mean that the side show was a waste of time? Granted we are getting ready for UT-Martin, but it's the other September games that I hope this "investment" pays out on!! Hopefully we are a MUCH better team by then. Go Vols!!!

You get better on field when you actually practice or live scrimmage. This was a mock game day to get better mentally and timing down on game days... So actually coaches and players did get better because most these guys never went thru game day at UT... This to me was a smart thing to do. They have practiced and put work in on field but this is essential too. GO VOLS!!!

rbhobbs73#226545 writes:

Stop it with the Dooley to Georgia talk...it AIN'T Happening.

He is not going there...EVER.

KnoxKiffin writes:

Is a "mock practice" similar to "moot court"?

Smokey_Told_Me writes:

It would be very positive to know that the team praticed the penality-free celebration after a touchdown. - - Just saying.

...Smokey knows where the bones are buried.

hueypilot writes:

in response to midgetangel#279179:

Let me get this right. They went through this little side show, albeit somewhat necessary. He "found 26 things to work on". Yet, "we didn't really get better as a team". THAT BOTHERS ME!!! What is the point? I thought the point WAS to get better as a team. I thought August was the month to use every available opportunity to get better. I thought the side show was a good idea. But when CDD says that we DIDN'T get better as a team, does that mean that the side show was a waste of time? Granted we are getting ready for UT-Martin, but it's the other September games that I hope this "investment" pays out on!! Hopefully we are a MUCH better team by then. Go Vols!!!

I think getting the right personnel in the game for the formation or defense you've got makes us a better team. I think not being disorganized on the sideline resulting in an untimely penalty or having to burn a timeout makes us a better team. I think what Dooley was saying is this doesn't make us block and tackle, kick, throw and catch, or execute plays better, but we've all seen games lost because of stupid mistakes that don't have anything to do with the play of the game.

Good idea by Dooley to do a dress rehearsal for his own newly-assembled staff before they trot their show out before 100,000 fans.

licknpromise777#651578 writes:

in response to tree_em_smokey:

The main thing I'm worried about offensively is "false starts". You know defences are gonna be moving around a lot to make our young line jump. Just hope they stay calm and watch the ball. The line doesn't have to play awesome for us to win, they just have to minimize errors. Go Vols!

True...Oregon and FLA both have plenty of talent on defense and they will throw every possible alignment and blitz package they can at our young line and QB.hopefully some of that will get ironed out in game one.

licknpromise777#651578 writes:

in response to bigorangepete9455:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

I agree;Contrary to popular belief I don't think GA is really DD's dream job.Coaching the Vols is enough of a challenge for him or any other coach for that matter

Ralph_Crampton writes:

Hey Pine...Your opinion of Manning coaching the Vols in any capacity is not likely. Manning one of richest athletes ever I am sure loves Tennessee...would never coach anywhere...I could see him maybe as a commentater on say some pro playoff games and if he wantys to, be in the TV booth during the Super Bowl, but that;s all. I'm sure Peyton loves UT, but players or former players are not as rabid as we fans are. Peyton is now more of a business man...than fan.

ncvol17 writes:

in response to Ralph_Crampton:

Hey Pine...Your opinion of Manning coaching the Vols in any capacity is not likely. Manning one of richest athletes ever I am sure loves Tennessee...would never coach anywhere...I could see him maybe as a commentater on say some pro playoff games and if he wantys to, be in the TV booth during the Super Bowl, but that;s all. I'm sure Peyton loves UT, but players or former players are not as rabid as we fans are. Peyton is now more of a business man...than fan.

Ain't he the greatest?? He is on TV tonite !!~!

sm1 writes:

in response to vol88:

What was the score? I had Tennessee minus 6.5 against Mock.

Tennessee won the game, but they did not cover the spread.

smyrnavol writes:

in response to NegativeBillSportsAnimal:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

i have a good buzz, but i have to ask , WHAT DID YOU SAY?

midgetangel#279179 writes:

in response to movol77:

Go read "Coaching 101" save yourself some grief.

First of all, you need to read the WHOLE post that I had. I said, "I thought the sideshow was a good idea.".

Second of all, YOU go read "Coaching 101". It ain't that hard to figure out.

Thirdly, Our problem isn't whether we can walk into the stadium correctly, it is what we do while we are there. Those that played last year KNOW what the pre-game is all about. Work with the new guys on pre-game. OUR problem isnt pre-game. OUR problem is lining up correctly, executing when we get there. Last time I read "Coaching 101" those things were to be addressed during practice.

Lastly, I was addressing the comment made by Dooley when he said that we did not get any better as a team. Your beloved "Coaching 101" says if it is not beneficial to the team or makes the team any better, then don't waste your time.

I dont care what Dooley does pre-season or pre-game as long as it makes the team better.

Good GRIEF!!

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