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Former UT Coach: “Trey Smith is the Leader of Vols’ O-Line”

Photo Credit: Mason Burgin/RTI

Former five-star offensive lineman Trey Smith came in with extremely high expectations heading into his freshman season with the Vols this year. And now it looks as though he’ll be the lone true freshman starter along the offensive line for Tennessee this year.

And he’s catching the eye of one of former Tennessee head coach Phillip Fulmer’s offensive line coaches.

Former Tennessee assistant Doug Mathews told the Midday 180 on 104.5 The Zone in Nashville that Trey Smith is already making a big impact.

“Trey Smith is already the leader of the offensive line,” Matthews said. “He is a mean, nasty practice player. Great off the field, but mean on it.”

Mathews was invited to watch practice on Tuesday of last week, and he said Smith stood out to him. He also said that Smith is a guy he and Coach Fulmer “are always talking about.”

The Vols are likely to rotate as many as eight or nine players on the offensive line in different positions. Although Smith came to Knoxville as a tackle, he’ll likely see time at guard in his first season.

Mathews thinks that’s the best plan for the Vols’ highly-touted freshman.

“There’s no other way to do it,” Mathews told Jonathan Hutton, Chad Withrow and Paul Kuharsky of WGFX-FM. “Why put it in the tenth best player on the offensive line when you can put in the sixth best player and move some other guys around.”

The Vols will rely heavily on Smith for the duration of the season barring injury or setback. If he lives up to the hype, things will be much easier for the Vols’ young skill players at quarterback and running back.

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