Dooley in a foul mood after practice

Coach: some Vols have 'poor me' syndrome

Simms, Bray vying for starting position

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Derek Dooley walked over to a group of reporters after Tuesday's practice with his head down.

A joke about his World War II-themed tangent at Monday's news conference brought a brief smile to the Tennessee coach's face, but he quickly retreated toward his displeased aura that came as a result of a lackluster two hours of practice.

"It's not something that's unique to these guys," Dooley said. "It's human nature not to be able to wake up every day and bring your best.

"There is no other option. It doesn't matter if you're hurtin', 'I'm sick, I got the flu, I got the swine flu.' It doesn't matter. You work. And you go to work and you put it all in every day."

Dooley said he was unhappy that "a couple of people in our organization" called in sick Monday.

"Are you kidding me?" Dooley asked. "You shouldn't be sick on a Monday. Nobody gets sick on a Monday. You're not sick.

"If I gave you a million dollars, would you go to work today if you're sick? 'Oh yeah, I would have gone.' Then why didn't you go? What do you need a million dollars for? If you can go, go. That's your obligation to the organization. That's how it works."

Though the Vols have struggled to a 2-5 start and are the only team in the SEC without a conference win, Dooley has largely been pleased with his team's performance at practices during the past month. After two physical practices during the bye week, Dooley said he could have used "about 100 of those."

Tuesday, which featured ominous skies and light rain during the first hour, was obviously a different story.

"Hypothetically, on a given team, some guys get the 'poor me's,' " Dooley said. " 'Poor me, I'm not playing good. Poor me, we're not winning. Poor me, the coaches are on me. Poor me, class, study hall . . . ' Nobody really cares about that. Some guys just mentally chose not to bring it. Sometimes that happens."

Senior linebacker LaMarcus Thompson said Dooley "definitely let us know" his feelings about Tuesday's practice because "he's a guy that's going to tell you straight up what it is.

"The guys that have been winning since they were in middle school and never really had a losing season - that's just one of those things growing up and having to experience things that are new," Thompson said. "This will be good for them and we know we have to work harder."

Simms on the Mend: Matt Simms conceded that he might have to wear a sleeve on his sprained left knee Saturday against South Carolina, but he's nowhere near ready to concede his job to freshman Tyler Bray.

"I believe my performance in the game wasn't great, but it was good enough to show everyone the reason why I'm the starter and the leader of the offense," Simms said of his performance against Alabama, when he was 12-of-22 for 117 yards and an interception. "I'm focused on getting this offense in the end zone and not being denied in the red zone like last week."

Dooley said Simms, who didn't practice Monday but went through all of Tuesday's practice, is "showing big jumps every day." Simms said his knee was "a little sore" near the end of Tuesday's practice.

"The mental wear on the injury kind of got to me at the end of practice," he said. "You want it to go away so bad and you do all this stuff and all the treatment to get rid of it. It kind of stinks at times, but the trainers are helping me out a lot."

Not for Kicks: Daniel Lincoln (quadriceps) did not kick in practice and will miss his fourth consecutive game Saturday, Dooley said.

Lincoln, who has not kicked since the UAB game in September, is 7-for-7 on field goals and 11-of-12 on extra points this season.

Give Me Moore: Wide receiver Denarius Moore was still wearing a red jersey at practice, but said he does not have to take any more tests for the concussion he sustained in the first quarter against Alabama.

"I'm free to go," he said.

Cornered: Safety Prentiss Waggner has temporarily moved back to his old position of cornerback this week because of a turf toe injury to Marsalis Teague.

Teague's status for Saturday's game is up in the air. So too, apparently, is the experiment to slide Waggner to cornerback and increase freshman Brent Brewer's playing time at safety.

"I don't know if we're better with Prentiss at corner or not," Dooley said. "We're going to keep experimenting to see if we can get our personnel right."

Andrew Gribble can be reached at 865-342-6327.

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Comments » 118

abnerPeabody writes:

I believe Mr.Simms needs to concentrate on getting better and leave the evaluation of how good he is to others.He is very average at this time but thinks he is the second comeing of Peyton or Tee.Son,you neeed to grow up and leave the me out. You are not nearly as good as you think.Bray is not as bad as you think.Play as a team win or lose.If you were as good as you think ,you never would have had to transfere to a Jr.College. You are tough and do ok at times,but there are other times you are completely lost.Just play the game to get better and quit bragging on yourself.

IN_Volfan writes:

glad to see Dooley fired up, keep the team motivated. Would love to ruin spurrier's halloween!

vols2#227315 writes:

Bench Simms forever. Give Bray the next 6 games and and we will have a real quarterback for next year. IF you can not quarterback in the Big East, there is noway you could play in the SEC.

The7Maxims writes:

Ummmm. On a lighter note, there was an interesting article on Scout highlighting Dooleys recruiting efforts this year. Here are a few quotes:

"It only takes a short look at the Vols current recruiting class to see some major differences from last year’s class.
For one this class is a lot farther ahead on commitments than the 2010 class. Last year’s group only had 10 pledges at this time, while the number isn’t the only difference; the key factor is that this class appears much more stable than last year’s class."

"Dooley’s first class currently has 18 commitments; there is a sense of stability with the majority of this class expecting to stay committed

James Bryant went on to say that he expects another strong finish with two surprising statements considering recent quotes from both players:
"Gabe Wright-High School defensive tackle from Georgia, a four star prospect and many feels it’s down to Auburn and Tennessee with the Vols picking up a lot stock in the recent weeks. Wright was in attendance for the UT vs. Alabama game."

Mickey Johnson- High School defensive tackle from Louisiana, he earlier named UT his leader and backed off that when called by other schools recruiting sites. Tennessee appears in good shape with the very talented Bayou lineman. He is also a four star prospect."

Wright said that Auburn is number one for him. Johnson said FSU.

bristolvol writes:

Actually I believe Dooley is getting more than a million to show up for practice. Hopefully he can quit acting like a clown trying to make us laugh and start kicking some a s s and winning some ballgames. Or he will be gone.

LibertyVolance writes:

There is no time like the present for these players to bask in the limelight. Everybody wants to see a standout that makes game winning plays. The time is now. It is waiting.

GreerVol22 writes:

Let Bray play...Let Bray play
and anyone is better than Art "bean pole" Evans at corner.

steamboatticket#484773 writes:

in response to LibertyVolance:

There is no time like the present for these players to bask in the limelight. Everybody wants to see a standout that makes game winning plays. The time is now. It is waiting.

Is LibertyVolance taking liberties with the liberty of the press? Nope...well said.

tovolny writes:

I didn't think man to man on Alabama's receivers was a good idea. There probably are just a couple of pro corners in the NFL that could work one-on-one against Julio. It wasn't good at first...then it is hard to believe we stuck with it the whole game.

D. Rogers looked preoccupied. His mind just wasn't in it. He looks fantastic when he puts out full effort. However, when he is not willing to finish his routes or work for position when Simms is scrambling makes me throw my hands up and shake my head. He seems to run away from blocking opportunities. Probably the reason he is not playing much.

Art Evans needs some special help with defending the run. He is still stopping completely when a runner cuts toward him. Surely some coach could show him how to set tackling angles. IF YOU STOP, YOU FLOP...ask Johnny Majors.

Back to Stocker: get a TE into the game that has some toughness and desire. He has ability, but chooses to back off and slow down. Too late now...his career in the NFL got hauled off with the trash.

Is Walker still on the team? I thought his leadership would be a bright spot. Seems like it has been a long time since I heard him mentioned. I do hope he wasn't injured and I didn't pick up on it.

Gas Pumper Jeffries will be cutting across the middle this Saturday...you can bet on it. Spurrier cuts him in then breaks him back outside to hiccup the safety and corner on the other side. Just watch...it works like magic for SC.

We will get better someday. Don't ask me how I know, I just know.

The Pride of the Southland Band was FANtastic. Everybody looked good on our long touchdown run.
About the only bright spot I noticed, and I stayed there the whole GAME. I look at this year as preseason for 2011.

VolAlum2003 (Inactive) writes:

Calling your players out during a media interview for a lackluster practice is one thing...calling your staff out because they phoned in sick seems like the kind of thing that should be handled "in house."

I know the Kool-Aid drinkers are going to think that I'm making something out of nothing, but if Dooley is going to run this program, then he needs to RUN THIS PROGRAM and not complain about it to the media.

VolAlum2003 (Inactive) writes:

in response to The7Maxims:

Ummmm. On a lighter note, there was an interesting article on Scout highlighting Dooleys recruiting efforts this year. Here are a few quotes:

"It only takes a short look at the Vols current recruiting class to see some major differences from last year’s class.
For one this class is a lot farther ahead on commitments than the 2010 class. Last year’s group only had 10 pledges at this time, while the number isn’t the only difference; the key factor is that this class appears much more stable than last year’s class."

"Dooley’s first class currently has 18 commitments; there is a sense of stability with the majority of this class expecting to stay committed

James Bryant went on to say that he expects another strong finish with two surprising statements considering recent quotes from both players:
"Gabe Wright-High School defensive tackle from Georgia, a four star prospect and many feels it’s down to Auburn and Tennessee with the Vols picking up a lot stock in the recent weeks. Wright was in attendance for the UT vs. Alabama game."

Mickey Johnson- High School defensive tackle from Louisiana, he earlier named UT his leader and backed off that when called by other schools recruiting sites. Tennessee appears in good shape with the very talented Bayou lineman. He is also a four star prospect."

Wright said that Auburn is number one for him. Johnson said FSU.

Does it matter? I mean, "stars" mean nothing and scout.com is just a bullcrap website that steals people's money. Plus, if Wright and Johnson are both four star prospects, then that means that they don't have "character" and that they are just full of themselves and won't work hard. I mean...that's the consensus opinion on these message boards, isn't it? Stars aren't important when we recruit a one or two star player, but they are suddenly something to be proud of when a four-star player even considers our program.

On a more serious note. I'm not sure how the article can say that our recruiting class this year is more "stable" than last year's class at this same time. I think that whoever wrote that article is looking back through the screwed up funk of a mess that Kiffin left and making a flawed assumption.

Also, whatever good things Scout.com is saying, Rivals.com is more than happy to point out Dooley's shortcomings in this area: http://footballrecruiting.rivals.com/...

Who is right? We'll find out in 2013.

VolGrad writes:

in response to VolAlum2003:

Calling your players out during a media interview for a lackluster practice is one thing...calling your staff out because they phoned in sick seems like the kind of thing that should be handled "in house."

I know the Kool-Aid drinkers are going to think that I'm making something out of nothing, but if Dooley is going to run this program, then he needs to RUN THIS PROGRAM and not complain about it to the media.

He didn't tell the media anything he hadn't already told his team.

GBO!

Orangeblood13 writes:

Lincoln and pope have got to be the 2 biggest softies on the team

chrisw2967 writes:

I thought Simms didnt have a problem with Bray getting snaps ? Id much rather lose with Bray getting the reps and the experience,than lose with Simms at QB.
Simms sounds like he is trying to campaign to keep his job.
He doesnt talk about throwing 3 or 4 passes right in the hands of Bamas DBs.He just needs to stfu and learn how to look off his WRs.

Timed_vol (Inactive) writes:

in response to Orangeblood13:

Lincoln and pope have got to be the 2 biggest softies on the team

you can't kick with a bad quad. period.

some kickers kick too much. that is my theory on lincoln.

Slystone writes:

in response to VolAlum2003:

Calling your players out during a media interview for a lackluster practice is one thing...calling your staff out because they phoned in sick seems like the kind of thing that should be handled "in house."

I know the Kool-Aid drinkers are going to think that I'm making something out of nothing, but if Dooley is going to run this program, then he needs to RUN THIS PROGRAM and not complain about it to the media.

agree 100%

Timed_vol (Inactive) writes:

gamecocks will kill us...no doubt at all.

Oddly, though, we COULD still be a bowl team. Not likely, but could happen.

woohoo.

Timed_vol (Inactive) writes:

in response to bristolvol:

Actually I believe Dooley is getting more than a million to show up for practice. Hopefully he can quit acting like a clown trying to make us laugh and start kicking some a s s and winning some ballgames. Or he will be gone.

I'm just surmising here, but I think this is accurate:
given our personnel, even Nick Saban would have won exactly ONE more game: LSU.

I know you are frustrated, but there is not much way to win against the sched we've had.

Well, maybe if we had changed to rugby-style plays....

slipshuck writes:

if justin worley honors his committment....he is fully capable of beating both bray and simms out....hes the real deal....

RaineyVol writes:

in response to bristolvol:

Actually I believe Dooley is getting more than a million to show up for practice. Hopefully he can quit acting like a clown trying to make us laugh and start kicking some a s s and winning some ballgames. Or he will be gone.

HAHA! or he will be gone?? it's his first season with all freshman! wait 2-3 years when all those freshman are grown up!

WinkeyVol writes:

Dooley's beginning to sound like George Patton now.

volfan4life1998 writes:

Shut up Matt Simms. Quit being cocky and acting like your the second coming of Peyton Manning or something. Let the coaching staff evaluate how good you are. Simms has just shown his true colors that he's only a team player when he's getting his way. What a baby! Bray is simply more talented than Simms with WAAAAYYYY more of an upside. If his name wasn't Simms he would still be in JUCO. Thank your father for your last name Simms!!!

Classof72 writes:

Go to work with the flu? Ask Jim Henson about going to work when you're sick. Everybody at work loves you when you do that. If they don't practice, they don't play. Then, only sick people call in sick.

Let's win a few games before we start carving what Coach Dooley says into stone tablets. Anybody can coach a team to defeat. Let's get eleven on the field, then pontificate. Let's skip allusions to war. The military has gone to war; America has gone to the football game. If you want to talk about football as war, go to Afghanistan first.

whippersnapper writes:

Brent Brewer is gonna be a heck of a player if he keeps working like Heck...did I say Heck...Heck no ! Hope Bray gets a lot of playing time...we need him to be ready to throw to these young recievers !

tlc3wp#268997 writes:

in response to WaltGoVols:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

I agree about Pope being soft. Lincoln is another quesion. He has already been accepted to be in the Navy Seal program. Not your average "soft" program.

jobrando#216494 writes:

in response to vols2#227315:

Bench Simms forever. Give Bray the next 6 games and and we will have a real quarterback for next year. IF you can not quarterback in the Big East, there is noway you could play in the SEC.

That's my observation from watching every crappy minute of the last 5 games.

jobrando#216494 writes:

in response to volfan4life1998:

Shut up Matt Simms. Quit being cocky and acting like your the second coming of Peyton Manning or something. Let the coaching staff evaluate how good you are. Simms has just shown his true colors that he's only a team player when he's getting his way. What a baby! Bray is simply more talented than Simms with WAAAAYYYY more of an upside. If his name wasn't Simms he would still be in JUCO. Thank your father for your last name Simms!!!

I agree. He should be concentrating on his free education and becoming a decent backup. We all loved Billy Bob. I cant remember but he got in one game. Heck it's fuzzy but he had the attitude.

jobrando#216494 writes:

Oh Yeah Jim Bob Cooter

cloudodust writes:

in response to WinkeyVol:

Dooley's beginning to sound like George Patton now.

Then he should go find the ones that called in sick and slap 'em around a bit...

Tennfan4075 writes:

in response to volfan4life1998:

Shut up Matt Simms. Quit being cocky and acting like your the second coming of Peyton Manning or something. Let the coaching staff evaluate how good you are. Simms has just shown his true colors that he's only a team player when he's getting his way. What a baby! Bray is simply more talented than Simms with WAAAAYYYY more of an upside. If his name wasn't Simms he would still be in JUCO. Thank your father for your last name Simms!!!

Have you ever had and observation about the Vol football team that was not critical of Matt Simms? What's he ever done other than practice his butt off and prepare for the next opponent and what does he get is his jock handed to him ever other pass play because he plays behind an o-line lacking in talent and experience and critical comments from some jerk who doesn't know a QB from a ballet dancer. Lighten-up, your coaching staff thinks MS gives the Vols their best chance to win at this point (although those chances seem to be slim to none).

tmartin writes:

When does the circus leave town?

TKO writes:

Keep moving, nothing to see here.

Bearwuzacheater writes:

in response to tlc3wp#268997:

I agree about Pope being soft. Lincoln is another quesion. He has already been accepted to be in the Navy Seal program. Not your average "soft" program.

you need to recheck your understanding of the militray process... Lincoln has expressed a DESIRE to be a seal; he cannot and will not be accepted into the Navy Seal program until AFTER he has completed Basic (officer or enlisted) and then his specialty school... only then after successfully completing both of those AND with the endorsements of both senior NCOs and command officers will he be CONSIDERED for Navy Seal training.

bigorangebolt writes:

UT cohorts:

We have to still get fired up! We will return to being number one in the near future with or without CDD! I just spoke to some of my Big Orange freinds, and they told me,coach DD is only filling in, until we land a big time coach! Who will it be? Hamilton has to be out of here! We have a new President, change is coming. Everyone,come to watch the great changes at UT! We will win and it not that far away! Recruits, come now to get the opportunites for the future. Go Big Orange!

www.baseballchatters.com

mercyseat writes:

in response to abnerPeabody:

I believe Mr.Simms needs to concentrate on getting better and leave the evaluation of how good he is to others.He is very average at this time but thinks he is the second comeing of Peyton or Tee.Son,you neeed to grow up and leave the me out. You are not nearly as good as you think.Bray is not as bad as you think.Play as a team win or lose.If you were as good as you think ,you never would have had to transfere to a Jr.College. You are tough and do ok at times,but there are other times you are completely lost.Just play the game to get better and quit bragging on yourself.

You took the words right out of my mouth!!!

The7Maxims writes:

in response to VolAlum2003:

Does it matter? I mean, "stars" mean nothing and scout.com is just a bullcrap website that steals people's money. Plus, if Wright and Johnson are both four star prospects, then that means that they don't have "character" and that they are just full of themselves and won't work hard. I mean...that's the consensus opinion on these message boards, isn't it? Stars aren't important when we recruit a one or two star player, but they are suddenly something to be proud of when a four-star player even considers our program.

On a more serious note. I'm not sure how the article can say that our recruiting class this year is more "stable" than last year's class at this same time. I think that whoever wrote that article is looking back through the screwed up funk of a mess that Kiffin left and making a flawed assumption.

Also, whatever good things Scout.com is saying, Rivals.com is more than happy to point out Dooley's shortcomings in this area: http://footballrecruiting.rivals.com/...

Who is right? We'll find out in 2013.

I think it's important because we're down so many players. We can't afford to miss on anybody who can't get into school: IE John Brown. We all want those 5 star guys, but if we get them and they can't get into school, our lack of depth will continue.

SavTnVol writes:

in response to Tennfan4075:

Have you ever had and observation about the Vol football team that was not critical of Matt Simms? What's he ever done other than practice his butt off and prepare for the next opponent and what does he get is his jock handed to him ever other pass play because he plays behind an o-line lacking in talent and experience and critical comments from some jerk who doesn't know a QB from a ballet dancer. Lighten-up, your coaching staff thinks MS gives the Vols their best chance to win at this point (although those chances seem to be slim to none).

Daddy Simms, you on here again taking up for baby?...Some of us may not know a QB from a ballet dancer, but we sure know a self centered, no leadership, spoiled kid from a ballet dancer..Bray is the QB, and I'll let the others on here decide for themselfs who is the other...and it's a speedy decision...Had his jock handed to him? Have you actually seen the hits he's taken? Sure he's gotten a couple, but the rest of them have been tackles, just like the running backs and the receivers take every play...I don't really know if the staff believes that Simms gives them the best chance to win or that they realize that Bray is the future and don't want to turn him into an Eric Ainge with a cheap injury when there is no need for him to get one..And practices his butt off? He may do that, but it seems to me that he is crying about competition now more than concentrating on practice...so back off Daddy Simms...

Bellem13 writes:

I support my UT Vols, been around awhile. Seen the good and the bad. AS LONG AS THEY PLAY THEIR BEST, and I think they do. Get better, sure they will and soon.

Lincoln a Navy Seal? Being invited doesn't mean you have made it.

gnm53108 writes:

Dooley in a foul mood?

You're not alone coach.

orangeman1 writes:

in response to Tennfan4075:

Have you ever had and observation about the Vol football team that was not critical of Matt Simms? What's he ever done other than practice his butt off and prepare for the next opponent and what does he get is his jock handed to him ever other pass play because he plays behind an o-line lacking in talent and experience and critical comments from some jerk who doesn't know a QB from a ballet dancer. Lighten-up, your coaching staff thinks MS gives the Vols their best chance to win at this point (although those chances seem to be slim to none).

I tend to agree with you. I also believe Simms gives UT the best shot at winning although I wonder why he feels the need to campaign the media/public that he is the best for the job. I think Bray might have more of an upside, but from what I've seen this year if Bray starts the rest of the season like some suggest, I dont think UT will win more than 2 more games. This is hands down the worst football team in UT history (last 25 years anyway)

gnm53108 writes:

in response to Navalorange:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Good question.

HoustonVol writes:

That hit on Moore should have been flag, and that bama player should be suspended this week like the MSU guy.

huntined#565710 writes:

WOW this is hard to take. Our school has gone from a team that thinks we can win a NC to a team that maybe we can win the SEC to a team that maybe we can upset one of the top teams to maybe we can win 6 and get a bowl!! WHERE OH WHERE HAS MY VOLS ALL GONE..

OTPVol writes:

in response to steviejanowski:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Agreed. We all knew this was not going to be a quick fix. With the exception of someone with the aura of Bozo and the ethics of Madoff, we need to stand behind our coach and support him as long as they are doing their best. I even gave the former last coach whose name shall not be spoken my support. CDD has it. Whoever is here next will have it. I support my Vols and the one chosen to lead them. GBO!!! Beat them c0cks this weekend!

jobrando#216494 writes:

in response to orangeman1:

I tend to agree with you. I also believe Simms gives UT the best shot at winning although I wonder why he feels the need to campaign the media/public that he is the best for the job. I think Bray might have more of an upside, but from what I've seen this year if Bray starts the rest of the season like some suggest, I dont think UT will win more than 2 more games. This is hands down the worst football team in UT history (last 25 years anyway)

So do you think Simm's gives the team the best chance next year to win? If Matt starts next year losing then what? Put in Bray then and he's not got any experience because Simms got every start this year. To me this year is over. I just want to see Bray in because he's got the best shot for the future. I'm going to say if we win out with Simm's in November then next year will be just like this one. He cant help this team play with the big boys.

volboy81 writes:

in response to bristolvol:

Actually I believe Dooley is getting more than a million to show up for practice. Hopefully he can quit acting like a clown trying to make us laugh and start kicking some a s s and winning some ballgames. Or he will be gone.

I pretty much agree. quit trying to be a comedian at the press conferences and shoot straight. If we were 7-0, you can be funny. Theres nothing funny about 2-5 at Tennessee.

gillblog writes:

From now on, our snap count will begin with;

"ACHTUNG!!"

(oh, the fallout from yesterday is getting bad around the watercooler)

navarrebeachvol writes:

in response to steviejanowski:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

well said. Thank you

orangecountyvols writes:

in response to USCgamecock2011:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Troll Lamecock,

Are you going to go to work or spend the whole day on Tennessee's site? Maybe you don't have a job or whatever. Regardless of the record, even if the Vols were 0-7, it sure bothers these trolls to give all their time to being here. When asked why they hang out here all day, none of them can give an answer.

They cannot admit even in 2010, the history of beatdowns by the Vols over them still consumes them.
Check out the overall record S C has with the Vols.
Just like U K and Vandy, we'll be old and gray before these teams can think about drawing even in the series.
But, just keep on "crowing" trolls.

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