Vols Football: 4/14 Practice Notes


Vols quarterback Joshua Dobbs and receiver Josh Smith participate in the 3-Man Weave during Tuesday’s practice. PHOTO: Nathanael Rutherford

It was a muggy afternoon as the Vols took the practice field on Tuesday, but the weather didn’t bring down the energy. Butch Jones led the Vols through their 10th spring practice of 2015, and there was plenty to note from today’s practice.

Right off the bat, Jones implemented “sudden change” during the practice, running the players through some one-on-one drills and a couple Circle of Life drills after stretching.

Running back Alvin Kamara was still somewhat limited, but he did actually participate in practice today. Wide receivers Marquez North and Pig Howard were still in green non-contact jerseys, but Howard participated fully in drills today.

Here are some notes from today’s practice:

  • The participants in the one-on-one drills after stretching were Von Pearson vs. Cam Sutton, Malik Foreman vs. Josh Malone, and Brian Randolph vs. Ethan Wolf. Pearson scored a TD against Sutton while the other two failed to score against their defender. The Circle of Life saw Shy Tuttle take on Chance Hall and Dontavius Blair go against Dimarya Mixon.
  • Following the one-on-one drills, the team participated in the 3-Man Weave, a drill Jones and his staff most notably used in his first season. The drill consisted of 3 players weaving in and out and tossing a football to each other similar to a basketball drill. The Harlem Globetrotter’s whistling theme played through the speakers as the players ran through the drill.
  • The third period saw the team run through a skeleton drill, which is essentially a passing drill without any linemen participating. Of note was the fact that Von Pearson appeared to be on the 2nd team offense while Pig Howard, Josh Smith, and Johnathon Johnson were the 1st team starters. This probably means nothing, but it’s worth at least mentioning.
  • The Vols also did some punt return work, and the main participants in that were Cam Sutton, Pig Howard, Von Pearson, and Alvin Kamara. Kamara is an intriguing option, but Sutton still figures to be the favorite to land the job once the season begins, holding down his role he held all of last season.


Sophomore Josh Malone has been the subject of fan scrutiny for many months now, but he looked very good in today’s practice, possibly having one of his better practices since joining the Vols a year ago. In the skeleton drill, he caught a well-placed deep ball by Quinten Dormady that hit him down the numbers along the sideline. He then caught another pass thrown by Dormady in the same drive. He only had one noticeable drop on the day, but otherwise he was fairly consistent.

Von Pearson, however, seemed to have an off day. His day started out well when he bested Cam Sutton in the one-on-one drill, but it only declined after. He didn’t have a terrible day, but he did fail to make a few grabs and tripped running through a route on a receiver-quarterback drill. Overall the receivers still had a shaky day, but they had a better practice than Saturday’s scrimmage.