Tennessee Vols morning report: Brian Maurer in transfer portal

KNOXVILLE, TN - SEPTEMBER 09: Tennessee Volunteers fans cheer during the first half of the game against the Indiana State Sycamores at Neyland Stadium on September 9, 2017 in Knoxville, Tennessee. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
KNOXVILLE, TN - SEPTEMBER 09: Tennessee Volunteers fans cheer during the first half of the game against the Indiana State Sycamores at Neyland Stadium on September 9, 2017 in Knoxville, Tennessee. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) /

The start of football season is just over a week away, and for the Tennessee Vols, it’s less than two weeks away. Fall sports are also underway after the first official varsity sporting event of the 2021-2022 academic school year took place Thursday.

Our morning update on Rocky Top is loaded with more news leading up to the start of football season. We’ve got stories involving two of the quarterbacks on the roster, an interview with one of the assistant coaches and then another interview with multiple players at one position.

Don’t worry, we’ll still recap that first event of the athletic year as well. It happened in women’s soccer. We also have an exhibition match in another fall sport to preview, so there’s plenty to get to. Let’s start with the football news.

Brian Maurer enters transfer portal – Dan Harralson, VolsWire.com

After being absent from practice for over a week, Tennessee Vols football quarterback Brian Maurer has officially entered the transfer portal. Maurer revealed his decision on both his Twitter and Instagram accounts Thursday.

"The 6-foot-3, 205-pound signal-caller appeared in 12 games for Tennessee from 2019-20. He totaled 550 passing yards, two passing touchdowns, five interceptions, 97 rushing yards and two rushing touchdowns."

Willie Martinez discusses secondary – Grant Ramey, GoVols247

UT returned to practice Thursday after a day off Wednesday on the heels of their Tuesday scrimmage. Secondary coach Willie Martinez met with the media to talk about the defensive backs. Here’s a bit of what he said about the confidence level there.

"“There’s an experienced group there and they’ve done a really good job of tying in the new guys in there. Staying connected. And basically it doesn’t really matter the four or five guys, or the six guys, that are out there. It’s been really great competition. I think the confidence level is really high. They’ve been able to be consistent in their execution. And everybody has been able to push guys.”"

Linebackers meet with media – Austin Price, VolQuest

In addition to Willie Martinez, Tennessee Vols football linebackers also met with the media Thursday. Juwan Mitchell, Solon Page III and Roman Harrison all spoke. Mitchell talked about stepping into a leadership role as a newcomer. Here’s a bit of what he said.

"“I just come in, sit back and just work. I try to break up everything. June was about getting my body right. July was about getting in football shape, so I would do extra field work and things like that. I just sit back and let everybody see the work for itself before I say anything, because that’s just how I rock.”"

Page discussed how the lack of depth at linebacker during the spring helped him improve. This is how he explained it.

"“I can’t control what I can’t control, but coach (Brian Jean-Mary) has really instilled confidence in me and has shown me I can do it. Taking that one-on-one time with Coach Jean in the film room, I feel like I’ve gotten a better hold of the defense.”"

Harrison discussed showcasing what he is able to do for the new coaching staff since he missed spring ball. Here is what he said.

"“Trying to rehab and get back into the game, you’re always pretty edgy to get back. Seeing everybody have fun with the new coaching staff and everything, I did want to show my talents. That’s all there is to it.”"

Hendon Hooker named to watch listGolden Arm Award

He may not even win the starting job for Tennessee football, but Hendon Hooker is already being named to preseason watch lists. The Virginia Tech Hokies graduate transfer was named to the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award preseason watch list Thursday.

"The Golden Arm Award annually recognizes the top senior or upperclassman quarterback set to graduate with their class. The semifinalists, finalists, and award recipient are selected by the distinguished Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Selection Committee, a group of prominent college football journalists, commentators, announcers, and former players. Candidates are chosen based on player performance on-and-off the field."

Soccer wins opener in blowout – Andrew Peters, UT Daily Beacon

Eight days after a scoreless tie with the Alabama Crimson Tide in its only exhibition match, the Tennessee Lady Vols soccer team opened the season with a dominating 6-0 win over the Florida Gulf Coast Eagles Thursday. Taylor Huff and Claudia Dipasupil had two goals and an assist each.

"The Lady Vols will stay at home for Sunday’s match when they take on Miami (OH) at 1 p.m. ET at Regal Soccer Stadium."

Volleyball to host exhibition matchupUTSports

Friday night will mark the first outing of the year for the Tennessee Lady Vols volleyball program. UT will host the Appalachian State Mountaineers for an exhibition.

"The Lady Vols follow up Friday’s exhibition with their annual Orange & White scrimmage on Saturday, beginning at 12:30 p.m. inside Thompson-Boling Arena. Admission is free for both matches. For fans planning to attend, note that Tennessee’s clear-bag policy will be in effect again this season."