Tennessee football coach Josh Heupel met with the local media on Thursday morning in a short press conference before the Vols host No. 1 Georgia at Neyland Stadium.
Heupel discussed a number of young players looking to step up due to injuries, Eliah Drinkwtiz trash talk from last week and more. Here’s everything Heupel said.
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On when he realized this year’s offense will be more run heavy
“The run game is kind of where everything has always started for us. I think each week forms its own identity a bit based on who you are and your personnel and what you’ve seen on the other side of the football too. Obviously, the run game for the most part of the season has been efficient and effective.”
On how important it is for Kaib Perry and Jeremiah Telander that they’re getting meaningful reps early in their career
“Every experience you get, in practice and during the course of a ball game throughout the season, makes you who you’re going to become. Those guys need to play well in this one. They’ve had a good week of preparation. They’ve grown over the course of the season. They need to step up and play well.”
On Eliah Drinkwitz ‘we stand on business’ comment to Heupel after the Missouri game
“I really didn’t hear it while we were out there at the handshake and, ma, we’ve moved well on to the game that we’ve got this week.”
On options beyond the receivers we’ve seen with injuries piling up
“We got all the guys that have been with us and practicing. If need be, those guys are going to have to go out and play extremely well. Hopefully we’re able to stay healthy in this one as well.”
On freshman receiver Nathan Leacock
“He got banged up in the early part of the season and missed some opportunities for growth and I’m just talking about reps on the practice field too. Since he’s gotten back for the most part he’s done a good job.”
On the STAR position making secondary calls, how Jourdan Thomas fared there as a young player
“TMac (Tamarion McDonald) has had a good week of practice, first of all. But JT did some really good things in the ball game last week. The communication piece, from all 11 at the end of the day, is really important. That guy is involved in a lot of it because he’s close to the football as well. Jourdan, every experience is going to continue to make him better. He’s had a good week of practice as he has over the course of the season.”