Da'Rick Rogers broke his three-week silence with the media after Wednesday's practice.
Later in the day, the Tennessee wide receiver was hoping to break out his yoga mat to, as he said, get in touch with his Chi.
Rogers, who has been the target of double teams from opposing secondaries since Justin Hunter went out for the season, said the idea has been simmering in his head ever since he visited North Carolina State as a junior in high school.
"They had guys, D-linemen, doing splits," Rogers said. "I was like, 'Wow, I wonder how they did that?' They said, 'Do the yoga.'
"I was like 'I've got to get into yoga one day.' This is my chance in college, so I took a yoga class."
It, perhaps, couldn't have come at a better time. If there's anyone on UT's roster that needs some stress relieved, it's Rogers.
First, the player who helped open the field and align him with plenty of one-on-one matchups, Hunter, went down with a torn ACL. A few weeks later, his quarterback and good friend, Tyler Bray, went out with a broken thumb.
"After Tyler's injury, I was like 'Are you kidding me? Another one? Can't be,' " Rogers said. "We got practice the day after the game so you really got to wash it off. You mourn about it the one day and then it's a new slate, new game."
Rogers said he snapped out of the funk quickly, even if his body language during losses to No. 1 LSU and No. 2 Alabama, at times, indicated otherwise. He said he's working on it, and his goal is to remain even-keeled when the Vols (3-4, 0-4 SEC) take on No. 14 South Carolina (6-1, 4-1) at Neyland Stadium on (TV: ESPN2, 7:15 p.m.).
"Good and bad things are going to happen, you've just got to go with the flow of the game," Rogers said. "You've got to keep your emotions under control."
One of the more loquacious UT players, Rogers said it was his heavy second-session class load, not frustration with his role and the direction of UT's offense, that prompted him to keep quiet. The vow of silence coincided during a stretch when coaches raved about his positive attitude and strong performance in practice despite a lack of production from his fellow wide receivers.
"Just making sure we've got everything straight in house before I came out and said too many comments on anything." said Rogers, who has 10 catches for 166 yards in the past three games. "Now we're working on getting (quarterback Justin) Worley right for the game this Saturday."
Worley's emergence has admittedly reinvigorated Rogers. He called the true freshman quarterback a "gunslinger" and said he's tried to relax Worley by reminding him that he was recently named Gatorade's National Football Player of the Year.
Not everyone can fall back on yoga to ease the stress.
"It just gives you (that feeling of) 'Oh my goodness, I got this young guy in here, he's a freshman, I want to get open for him and I know he can make the throws,'" Rogers said. "It really just makes you work that much harder."
Medical Update: For the second consecutive day, linebacker Curt Maggitt (calf) wore a red, non-contact jersey at Wednesday's practice. Running back/return man Devrin Young, who wore a red jersey Tuesday, was at full strength.
Coach Derek Dooley said linebacker Herman Lathers, who has yet to play this season because of a broken ankle, is "week to week."
"About two weeks ago we were a little disappointed he wasn't progressing, and last week he made a big jump," Dooley said. "A lot more cutting, and we kind of discuss it every week, so I'll get a little better bead on it after tomorrow."
Simms was demoted in similar fashion last season in favor of Bray.
"I think it's been hard on Matt. I think it's been hard on everybody because we want so bad for Matt to have a lot of success when he's on the field," Chaney said. "He's a senior, he's a good young man and he's struggling with his demotion right now.
"All in all, he's got so much character to him, he'll be just fine."