Given his coach's heightened level of attention to special teams and to all the details, Nick Guess has a pretty important job.
And while that job might appear relatively simple and regularly get overlooked, every field-goal attempt and every punt will begin in the hands of Tennessee's new long snapper.
"I feel confident," the junior said after practice Tuesday. "I've been working really hard."
Working hard is something Guess has had to do, especially with UT coach Derek Dooley's emphasis on the kicking game.
"It's great because it makes all of us better," Guess said. "Dooley's been pushing me pretty hard, and it's gotten me a lot better, to focus and concentrate on what I'm doing."
The opportunity to be Morgan Cox's understudy for his first three years at UT also has helped the former Farragut standout.
Cox had a clean snapping record in his three seasons at UT before translating his ability to the next level, winning the long snapper job with the Baltimore Ravens.
"He's always (been) a good mentor," said Guess, who Dooley placed on scholarship prior to the start of preseason camp.
"I've always looked up to Morgan. The biggest thing he probably taught was to have a routine coming out here, getting your mind right."
Guess came to UT the same year as senior kicker Daniel Lincoln, who's been able to watch him transform from wandering walk-on into the Vols' long snapper.
"It's been awesome seeing Nick grow and work, become committed the program, become committed to his job," Lincoln said.
"I think the results are definitely going to show on Saturdays."
Fresh Start: Marsalis Teague caught a pair of touchdown passes in last season's opener against Western Kentucky.
The sophomore receiver-turned-cornerback knows the chances of a repeat performance aren't in his favor.
"It's a little harder to score on the defensive side of the ball," said the smiling Teague.
"I'm just looking at it as a chance to go out there and have fun, enjoy playing with my teammates and going against somebody else."
Teague is listed as a co-starter with redshirt freshman Eric Gordon at one cornerback spot, though Teague said the on-field competition between the two friends really hasn't changed since Teague's switch to defense at the start of fall camp.
"We're very competitive," he said. "Even when I was at receiver, me and him would come up here during the summertime and do one-on-ones with each other.
"Now pretty much we're doing the same thing, he'll line up at receiver and I'll work on my stuff, so we're still doing the same thing as far as competing."
Golden Arches: Whether the opponent is UT Martin or Alabama, UT linebackers coach Lance Thompson just wants consistency in preparation and performance.
"What champions do is they strive for consistency at a high level," said senior middle linebacker Nick Reveiz, "and that's what Coach Thompson always talks about."
And Thompson's got an unusual analogy to illustrate his point.
"If you're going to go get a cheeseburger at McDonald's out in Los Angeles or here in Knoxville, it's got to be the same," Reveiz said.
"It's got to be high quality and exactly the same consistency. That's what we're trying to be, we want to be the McDonald's.
"That's his analogy, don't give me the credit for that one."
Veteran Returner: Senior Gerald Jones' return to the return game shouldn't hurt.
Jones, who didn't return kicks last season, averaged 10 yards on 15 punt returns two years ago. The Vols managed to return only 12 punts last season. Half of those were returned by freshman Nu'Keese Richardson, who is no longer on the team.
"I don't want to bash anyone, but that's what you get when you have a freshman back there," Jones said. "It's a different world (from high school)."
Patrick Brown is a freelance contributor. John Adams contributed to this report.