Leonard Little speaks to 'sluggish' Vols

Derek Dooley on Leonard Little's visit with the team

Former Tennessee standout Leonard Little provided the Vols with some motivational words before Monday morning's practice at Haslam Field.

Coach Derek Dooley, though, wasn't happy with how the team responded during the two-hour session.

"It was a message we need, because we're not there yet," Dooley said. "Little sluggish today. Think some guys stayed out too late last night."

Regardless of the lackluster effort in the first practice since Saturday's scrimmage, Dooley was pleased with Little's visit, which wasn't just a one-time thing.

"Leonard's got his picture on the wall, he was an All-American, he was a part of one of those banners in there," Dooley said. "That's what we're playing for. He's a guy who lived it, he breathed it.

"I think he lost about four games in his career and then he went on to be a great NFL player. So, he represents everything to me that Tennessee is all about. The more guys like that come back, I love it when they get in front of the team."

After reviewing the film from Saturday's scrimmage, Dooley said nothing jumped out at him in either a good or bad way, but that doesn't mean the Vols are a "good team" yet.

"I keep saying we're improving, we're getting better, and I feel good about that," Dooley said. "That's all I can ask them to do. But we're not a good team. I don't know where we are as a team. But you can't ask them to be a great team today.

"You ask them to be better today than you were yesterday, and so far our team is doing that. It doesn't mean we're any good."Defensive tackle Malik Jackson (knee) and linebacker Greg King (knee) each returned to practice Monday. Running back Tom Smith (knee) increased his workload but wore a red, non-contact jersey.

Andrew Gribble may be reached at 865-342-6327. Follow him at http://twitter.com/Andrew_Gribble and http://blogs.knoxnews.com/gribble

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Comments » 99

CoverOrange writes:

Keep pushing them, Coach Dooley.

gerwmor writes:

Leonard Little! OK most of these guys will not play like he played, few players anywhere do, but this team is going to be fun to watch and the program will have its share of great players under CDD.

givehim6 writes:

Glad some of the walking wounded are getting back on the field, they got 12 days to get all healded up.

voloffaith writes:

in response to givehim6:

Glad some of the walking wounded are getting back on the field, they got 12 days to get all healded up.

Healed is a good thing.

AHoffman writes:

"After a drunken birthday in 1998, NFL star Leonard Little crashed into and killed another motorist. When tested, his blood alcohol level measured 0.19 percent. Little received 60 days and 1000 hours of community service. Six years later, after the involuntary manslaughter conviction was wiped from his record, Little was again arrested for drunk driving."

txsvol#372416 writes:

in response to AHoffman:

"After a drunken birthday in 1998, NFL star Leonard Little crashed into and killed another motorist. When tested, his blood alcohol level measured 0.19 percent. Little received 60 days and 1000 hours of community service. Six years later, after the involuntary manslaughter conviction was wiped from his record, Little was again arrested for drunk driving."

Leonard Little was a great example on the field, but not off it. He could have been a 'Vol doing life.' Alcohol, cars, and former girlfriends do not mix. SAVol

Orangeblood13 writes:

some of these posters will always live their life with the glass always half empty, never half full

springtx_vol writes:

And he could also talk about how not to do things off the field.

Regardless of how you feel about what Little did off the field and regardless of whether you feel the punishment was correct, you can't ignore that he was a terror on the football field. He and Al Wilson may be the most intense football players around this side of Ray Lewis. Take the lessons both ways.

GreeneCountyVol writes:

One of my favorite plays while watching the Vols was the time that Freddie Kitchens ran the option against Leonard. For those who don't remember, Leonard flattened Fat Freddie before he made a full pivot away from center. The Tide didn't call that play again.

orangeman1 writes:

"we're not a good football team" Derek Dooley

Anyone want to change their answere to the poll question of who will win the SEC East?

UTVOL2001 writes:

I love CDD's approach and the way he communicates. I think he will get the most from players! Can wait to see us on the field! GBO!

BrRice16 writes:

in response to AHoffman:

"After a drunken birthday in 1998, NFL star Leonard Little crashed into and killed another motorist. When tested, his blood alcohol level measured 0.19 percent. Little received 60 days and 1000 hours of community service. Six years later, after the involuntary manslaughter conviction was wiped from his record, Little was again arrested for drunk driving."

And I'm sure Dooley has had him share that story as well. Very important lesson for kids in the "it'll never happen to me" generation to hear.

johnlg00 writes:

in response to orangeman1:

"we're not a good football team" Derek Dooley

Anyone want to change their answere to the poll question of who will win the SEC East?

They don't have to be "good" for another couple of weeks. For now, "improving" is good enough. CDD tells all of us that the team has a long way to go, as almost any coach would. However, I'll bet he is telling the team to get ready to cloud up and rain on everybody on the schedule. And he may well be telling a few of them that they had better pick up the pace if they want to be a part of this season's major surge!

Volunatic writes:

in response to orangeman1:

"we're not a good football team" Derek Dooley

Anyone want to change their answere to the poll question of who will win the SEC East?

Nope-- that's "coachspeak". He's "Holtz"ing the media, except without all the spitting and lisping.

LiveFaith writes:

in response to CantStandSaban:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

I know you're not disgusted, just trolling. Nevertheless, you ARE correct. I wonder how much motivation Leonard would have in the living room of the family whose mom he killed?

Vol43 writes:

in response to AHoffman:

"After a drunken birthday in 1998, NFL star Leonard Little crashed into and killed another motorist. When tested, his blood alcohol level measured 0.19 percent. Little received 60 days and 1000 hours of community service. Six years later, after the involuntary manslaughter conviction was wiped from his record, Little was again arrested for drunk driving."

I knew some fool would bring that up. It just had to be you.

Bigger_Al writes:

in response to GreeneCountyVol:

One of my favorite plays while watching the Vols was the time that Freddie Kitchens ran the option against Leonard. For those who don't remember, Leonard flattened Fat Freddie before he made a full pivot away from center. The Tide didn't call that play again.

I believe that was Brian Burgdorf. And I also believe it was the last play Burgdorf ever ran.

opvol writes:

We all know he's had baggage issues but this was a FOOTBALL TALK not a life talk....he was one hell of a football in college and the NFL....Hopefully he's improving as a citizen as well!!

VolinCalif writes:

It's getting on toward the start of season. Has anyone herd anything about the NCAA report yet? I hoped it would be finished by this time.

johnlg00 writes:

in response to CantStandSaban:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

No life is ever wasted; one can always be a bad example. Like Little, or like you, for that matter. I'm reasonably sure that by allowing Little to speak, CDD wasn't implying that what Little did off the field was OK.

dvhill100 writes:

in response to CantStandSaban:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

For someone who has demonstrated a total lack of respect for UT and its fans, I would be cautious about playing the respect card. LL did the crime and he did the time. Clean slate, end of discussion. Now, I know nothing of the latest DUI you mention, so I have no comment. He was there to talk football, not life. If DD had him use his DUI and vehicular homicide as an example of what not to do and consequences of your actions, fine. I wasn't there so unlike you, I don't offer comment on things I have no information on.

VolsFanInAfghanistan writes:

in response to CantStandSaban:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Easy there hot rod can't stand saban. If you didn't come off as a hot head maybe people wouldn't be in here defending Little. Do you know what was said in the meeting or conference? Do you know if he talked about his problems to the students? Of course what he did was probably unforgivable, but what's wrong with coming back to your school and sharing mistakes? Yes, he's the one that has to live with those mistakes, so does Stallworth, and the families of those that were lost. But I would rather have someone that made mistakes come and try to give a bit of guidance than someone who just walks the walk and talks the talk. Yeah you can be disgusted about it all you want, but would you be willing to go talk to someone about something that you've never experienced and be seen as a fraud? Not trying to cause an argument, just asking a simple question.

volinlouisvilleky writes:

in response to Volunatic:

Nope-- that's "coachspeak". He's "Holtz"ing the media, except without all the spitting and lisping.

Thats a good one! Holtz told his kids once they were the number 1 team in the country...just didn't say which country.

Munsterlander writes:

in response to CantStandSaban:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Geez, point made, let it go. Unless you were there you have no clue what was said or if/how these issues were addressed. Would you still persist in this harangue if you knew the man told his story in tears with obvious remorse and got 100 kids attention? Of course drunk driving is idiotic. Dooley has been so consistent on character issues - I'd be a little hesitant to pronounce judgement with so little information.

knoxvillevol writes:

in response to CantStandSaban:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

The best person to help young people learn is the person that has been there and done that. Even when it is something as horrific as a drunk driving incident that kills someone. Maybe they can listen to him and learn from his mistake, so many people think they are invincible and "that cant happen to me" so the more they hear from people just like them that did make these huge mistakes it may make them think twice before doing something similar. I respect Dooley to much to think he didnt take all of this into consideration before the invite.

sly_stone99#434111 writes:

There are some people on here that need a course study on forgiveness.

orangecountyvols writes:

Johnlg and other Vols,

Note John, I skipped over the troll, Cantstandanyone,and went to your posts. I always look for someone who knows of what he's speaking..........not the trolls.

We'd be worried if CDD said the team was great and no worries, etc. I'd never expect a real coach to over do the accolades before we've even played a game.

Looking forward now to the season and maintaining the ignoring of ignorants...(trolls.)

John, Navalorange, Witchdoctor etc........keep us posted.

givehim6 writes:

in response to voloffaith:

Healed is a good thing.

Thanks buddy, must have not spell checked that one.

Volin68 writes:

in response to CantStandSaban:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Sure you haven't, prove it. Question is, have you stopped beating your wife?!

eprahm (Inactive) writes:

in response to AHoffman:

"After a drunken birthday in 1998, NFL star Leonard Little crashed into and killed another motorist. When tested, his blood alcohol level measured 0.19 percent. Little received 60 days and 1000 hours of community service. Six years later, after the involuntary manslaughter conviction was wiped from his record, Little was again arrested for drunk driving."

I had not heard about the second episode. I thought he had repented but I guess not. These issues in life are more important than football but hopefully some conversation behind the scenes was beneficial to Little and some of the young players in that regard too.

illinoisvolfan writes:

in response to CantStandSaban:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Cool your jets, CSS. Nobody is saying that both Stallworth and Little didn't make huge mistakes, they did. And the families affected will always suffer for what happened, they don't need me or you to remind them of this.

But bringing in players like Little can become a good thing when they emphasize their postive traits (on-field leadership) and acknowledge their shortcomings (off-field celebrating). If the current Vols can learn from the experiences of former Vols, both good and bad, perhaps fewer tragic events will occur. And everyone benefits from that. GBO!

Vol_Stuck_in_GA writes:

in response to opvol:

We all know he's had baggage issues but this was a FOOTBALL TALK not a life talk....he was one hell of a football in college and the NFL....Hopefully he's improving as a citizen as well!!

What Little did behind the wheel was horrible, but this was not a motivational speech on how to be a good citizen. CDD did not praise Little as a driver or anything other than a football player. opvol has it right... Little is a great on the field example and CDD treated him as such. I am sure that Little will never be asked to head the Vol for Life program because of his mistake, but there is nothing wrong with him addressing the team and talking about playing football for Tennessee.

Volin68 writes:

in response to CantStandSaban:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Defend? Never. Accept and move on...what other choice is there? Why hold it against his school because he's a bone head? I'm sure Vandy fans don't hold it against you and your embaressing attempts to squeak from the top of your soap box.

voloffaith writes:

in response to CantStandSaban:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Hey Tommy that last faux Pas was 7 years ago in 2004 per your industrious efforts to keep the guilty as such. Do you know what Coach Dooley had him speak about? Do ya think the coach who started a VFL program just might have a clue about what to have Mister Little say? Since ewe weren't a fly on the wall you can only speculate about the content of the speech. Probably about playing with pride while wearing the Orange & White. I feel comfortable that VFL direction blended in there. But then I'm like ewe only speculating. Difference is I'm usually,as best as I can by God's grace, not about tearing others down,but building up. As another poster alluded to I'm about forgiving as opposed to being the grudge holder who always(like the Devil) throws back in their face. Keeping that inside puts ewe on a good track for ulcers and all other sorts of ailments that people get from not knowing the power of forgiveness. Only one true source for that relief as I've come to know. Yes, you guessed it is Jesus. Anytime you want to know more about Him let me know and I will humbly share the difference He has made in my life as He continues to change this unworthy sinner. So think about Leonard as if he was your son and would you as a father like to continually have him treated so badly? Yes,sin has its consequences in life. The question is do we give or are we in need of forgiveness? Maybe in time we will hear the content and just possibly see an individual that is sad and broken for his past errors in judgement. Did he ask families for forgiveness whether they were willing to give it or not? One part God calls of me is to be" at peace as much as I can with all men." So there is food for thot for me ,you, and those who read my post.

voloffaith writes:

in response to CantStandSaban:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Please excuse/4give the calling you Tommy in my postaround 3:54 Inappropriate on my part sir. In future CSS.

LiveFaith writes:

in response to Vol_Stuck_in_GA:

What Little did behind the wheel was horrible, but this was not a motivational speech on how to be a good citizen. CDD did not praise Little as a driver or anything other than a football player. opvol has it right... Little is a great on the field example and CDD treated him as such. I am sure that Little will never be asked to head the Vol for Life program because of his mistake, but there is nothing wrong with him addressing the team and talking about playing football for Tennessee.

So if a mass murderer with a PhD in physics is released from prison b/c our legal system does not punish the crime properly, then having him motivate your kids in a HS/Uni Science class would be fine?

C'mon, Vol fans we need to man up here. LL was a great Vol on the field. Probably one of the best of all time. I saw him flatten fat Freddie. I was there when he caused the fumble to preserve the win in 96'.

That being said, his recklessness has destroyed his own reputation, soiled UT's reputation, the NFL's and the Rams. But all that is nothing compared to the fact that his selfish actions took the life of someones mother. Someone's daughter. Someone's sister? Children grew up without a parent because of his moronic actions.

Then he even proves that he does not have remorse by his repeat of the actions. Not to mention the other criminal issues.

CSS is the biggest steaming pile on this board, but I have to admit that he's right and CDD is wrong on this one. I guarantee you this, if it had been my mother, or wife, or sister, or daughter that he slaughtered, he would NEVER live another day of his life in peace. Not ONE while I had breath. I don't care if he's 6'1", 260 w\ 4.6 speed.

It's time to stop defending this guy. The justice system of MO (and our nation) failed miserably when a killer like this is free while his victims will suffer the rest of their lives. The Rams, the NFL, UT, and CDD should all be ashamed for not holding LL accountable. He should not be free and should NEVER be exalted as any kind of role model for young men.

Take off the orange colored shades for just a second. Please.

heisthelord367 writes:

in response to Orangeblood13:

some of these posters will always live their life with the glass always half empty, never half full

yea, i think you would see the glass as half empty if it was your family member he killed..such a casual disregard for life in your post over something ultimately trivial (and yes i do love the game) as football..

lomas98 writes:

Oh how I long for the days of having a dominant DE like Little again. He was actually a JC guy that lived up to the spring hype. The most dissapointing thing about his career at UT was the genius coaching staff decided to take one of the most dominant DE's in all of college football his senior season and turn him into a linebacker. Brilliant!

volfan4betterorworse writes:

if i were the ones who didn't care for Little i would pay him a visit and ask him not to come back and give speeches in place of posting on here where nothing can be done about it,i do believe he would appreciate hearing from you all

pingkr62 writes:

in response to voloffaith:

Hey Tommy that last faux Pas was 7 years ago in 2004 per your industrious efforts to keep the guilty as such. Do you know what Coach Dooley had him speak about? Do ya think the coach who started a VFL program just might have a clue about what to have Mister Little say? Since ewe weren't a fly on the wall you can only speculate about the content of the speech. Probably about playing with pride while wearing the Orange & White. I feel comfortable that VFL direction blended in there. But then I'm like ewe only speculating. Difference is I'm usually,as best as I can by God's grace, not about tearing others down,but building up. As another poster alluded to I'm about forgiving as opposed to being the grudge holder who always(like the Devil) throws back in their face. Keeping that inside puts ewe on a good track for ulcers and all other sorts of ailments that people get from not knowing the power of forgiveness. Only one true source for that relief as I've come to know. Yes, you guessed it is Jesus. Anytime you want to know more about Him let me know and I will humbly share the difference He has made in my life as He continues to change this unworthy sinner. So think about Leonard as if he was your son and would you as a father like to continually have him treated so badly? Yes,sin has its consequences in life. The question is do we give or are we in need of forgiveness? Maybe in time we will hear the content and just possibly see an individual that is sad and broken for his past errors in judgement. Did he ask families for forgiveness whether they were willing to give it or not? One part God calls of me is to be" at peace as much as I can with all men." So there is food for thot for me ,you, and those who read my post.

Great post/reply. Hopefully CSS and the other folks,(including myself) who from time to time tend to vent anger and hateful words at others, will stop and think about what they print before they print it. As for Little and Stalworth, if these men have any conscience at all, will have carry what they have done to their graves. This is something I don't envy. Thanks again for your insightful words, and I hope we can all learn from them. G.B.O.

NTNSTY writes:

in response to Volunatic:

Nope-- that's "coachspeak". He's "Holtz"ing the media, except without all the spitting and lisping.

...giggle....

Orangeblood13 writes:

in response to heisthelord367:

yea, i think you would see the glass as half empty if it was your family member he killed..such a casual disregard for life in your post over something ultimately trivial (and yes i do love the game) as football..

looking at your screen name, I think you should practice what you preach. It is not for me to judge that will be judged. You also know nothing of my casual disregard for anything. Take your hypocrisy elsewhere.

Pompey writes:

in response to AHoffman:

"After a drunken birthday in 1998, NFL star Leonard Little crashed into and killed another motorist. When tested, his blood alcohol level measured 0.19 percent. Little received 60 days and 1000 hours of community service. Six years later, after the involuntary manslaughter conviction was wiped from his record, Little was again arrested for drunk driving."

.....I was waiting on this post from you troll. Decent fans know that Little's football commitment is being show cased to the team not his personal life....you did get the word decent, didn't you troll....?

chrisw2967 writes:

in response to CantStandSaban:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Funny you call someone disgusting and then you post on here.your beyond disgusting your borderline a complete idiot.Shouldnt you be on the Vandy site talking about 2 weeks and the losing starts?

martinvol34 writes:

in response to CroatianVol:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

I really don't think that CantStandSabanhe knows what school he supports, but he is an idiot, CV. That's for sure.

Kelly8 writes:

Next week's keynote lineup includes Donte' Stallworth, Britton Colquitt, Albert Haynesworth, Onterrio Smith, Lamarcus Coker, and Dwayne Goodrich! Of course, Goodrich will participate by conference call from prison...

voloffaith writes:

in response to CantStandSaban:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

I'm gonna keep it nice by simply stating here you are as judge and jury. Did ewe see Rucker's tweet piece where he said Little spoke about his mistakes and didn't blame someone else for HIS mistakes? So again this appears to be a teaching piece that wasn't just rah rah sis boom bah,but moreso about opportunities. This is what I said to you in my post around 5ish about knowing content and purpose b4 becoming as you have a judge and jury.

SevenT writes:

in response to CantStandSaban:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Ever made a mistake?

That is dirty to drag that up on this board

VOLtage writes:

How can they be sluggish when they are unranked and picked 4th in the east. Come on guys lets go.

VolFanInTheBoro (Inactive) writes:

in response to LiveFaith:

So if a mass murderer with a PhD in physics is released from prison b/c our legal system does not punish the crime properly, then having him motivate your kids in a HS/Uni Science class would be fine?

C'mon, Vol fans we need to man up here. LL was a great Vol on the field. Probably one of the best of all time. I saw him flatten fat Freddie. I was there when he caused the fumble to preserve the win in 96'.

That being said, his recklessness has destroyed his own reputation, soiled UT's reputation, the NFL's and the Rams. But all that is nothing compared to the fact that his selfish actions took the life of someones mother. Someone's daughter. Someone's sister? Children grew up without a parent because of his moronic actions.

Then he even proves that he does not have remorse by his repeat of the actions. Not to mention the other criminal issues.

CSS is the biggest steaming pile on this board, but I have to admit that he's right and CDD is wrong on this one. I guarantee you this, if it had been my mother, or wife, or sister, or daughter that he slaughtered, he would NEVER live another day of his life in peace. Not ONE while I had breath. I don't care if he's 6'1", 260 w\ 4.6 speed.

It's time to stop defending this guy. The justice system of MO (and our nation) failed miserably when a killer like this is free while his victims will suffer the rest of their lives. The Rams, the NFL, UT, and CDD should all be ashamed for not holding LL accountable. He should not be free and should NEVER be exalted as any kind of role model for young men.

Take off the orange colored shades for just a second. Please.

LIveFaith I agree with you for the most part. Someone like Al Wilson would have been a much better choice but CSS would have put a negative spin on whoever the choice was. No way CSS is a Vanderbilt fan. He just says that to rile Vol fans up. No real Vanderbilt fan is gonna talk smack about football. CSS is more than likely little Gata Z using another one of his numerous user names

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