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August 18, 2014

Quick HiTs: Vols' weaving into game prep

Following an "off" day in which the team reviewed film, got treatment and made corrections, Tennessee returned to Haslam Field Monday morning for the first of three practices this week.

The Vols are getting increasingly into game-week preparations in advance of their Aug. 31 season opener against Utah State inside Neyland Stadium (7 p.m., SEC Network).

They also trotted out the old figure-eight ball drill for one of the first times all camp, a favorite of coach Butch Jones.

"That's the first time in the history of Tennessee football that we haven't had a ball on the ground," Jones said after the first weave. "That means we're getting better.

"But it pains me. That was painful to watch. Be a basketball player."

Curt Maggitt moved well on the practice field in doing some light jogging and running with a trainer supervising, but Maggitt again did not practice. Also in the 'Black Hole' were: Johnathon Johnson, Vic Wharton, Woody Quinn. Tailback Derrell Scott was in a green, non-contact jersey while Geraldo Orta, equipped with a visor, also was in a green jersey.

Willie Martinez was extremely intense in his individual drills with defensive backs, and the Vols' secondary seemed to respond with a turnover in a team situation.

Tennessee's opening kickoff coverage unit continued to take form, with George Bullock the specialist. A much speedier coverage unit also appears to feature: Elliot Berry, Michael Williams, Malik Foreman, Dillon Bates, Devaun Swafford, Chris Weatherd, Ca Sutton, Jalen Reeves-Maybin, LaDarrell McNeil, Lemond Johnson.

The Vols' offense continues to shuffle a bit, with Kyler Kerbyson looking increasingly comfortable at right tackle and Jashon Robertson surging at right guard. Continuing to be encouraging for Tennessee: Dylan Wiesman got more reps at second-team center and continued to look healthier than he has for the majority of camp.

Marquez North, Von Pearson and Alton Howard worked among the Vols' first three wideouts, with Ethan Wolf continuing to get major reps at tight end. Jalen Hurd and Marlin Lane were full-go atop the Vols' backfield at running back.

Derek Barnett and Corey Vereen keep making strides at defensive end, and Weatherd continues to show his athleticism. Williams is battling Emmanuel Moseley in a hotly contested race at corner opposite Sutton.

VolQuest.com has a photo gallery, video highlights and many other items, including Jones' reaction, as well as that of players, coming immediately after practice. We'll post updates to the General's Quarters, as well as our Twitter handles: @John_BriceVQ; @Brent_Hubbs; @VolQuest_Rob; @VolQuest_Paul; @GrantRamey; @AustinPriceless.

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