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November 19, 2013
Quick HiTs: Healthy Vols continue Vandy prep
Working on a chilly Haslam Field, Tennessee remained in full pads as it continued preparations for Saturday's must-win game against Vanderbilt as the Vols seek to recognize their goal of bowl eligibility.
Sitting at just 4-6 with two games left to play, the Vols need season-ending wins against Vanderbilt and at Kentucky to help Butch Jones lead the team to its first postseason appearance since 2010.
Coming off their final bye week of the year, the Vols appeared largely healthy. Brian Randolph, Jacob Carter, A.J. Branisel, Joe Stocstill and transfer tailback Justus Pickett, who was not granted immediate eligibility this season but can practice, logged more work after being hobbled for months with an ankle injury.
There was a definite vibe of positive energy around the Vols' work, as folks referenced that Jones had brought back 'Positive Tuesday' --- an upbeat practice term from earlier this season. The Vols' offensive line worked extensively once again on the five-man sled, with the emphasis there on the group's physicality. All three units of the UT offensive line had to help drive the sled from side to side on Haslam Field.
Defensively, senior Marlon WallsJacques Smith at the right end. Tennessee worked on defending various Wildcat looks and other sets in prepping for the Commodore offense.
Special teams remained an ever-present focal point, with Jones urging on his players during that period and Mark Elder, the Vols' special teams coordinator, on the microphone bellowing out instructions. Tennessee has been pretty consistent on special teams units for most of this season but is seeking to rebound after a tough day in the blowout loss to Auburn.
Offensively, Joshua Dobbs continued at the helm of the offense while Nate Peterman continued to get significant second-team work for the Vols.
VolQuest.com will have full videos, a story on Dobbs, Wednesday's matchup piece and mid-week recruiting roundup and more throughout the night and all day Wednesday before UT's assistant coaches meet with reporters. Staff twitter handles for additional updates and comments are: @VolQuest_Staff, @VolQuest_Paul, @VolQuest_Rob, @John_BriceVQ, @AustinPriceless and contributions from @GrantRamey.