Jeremy Pruitt has only conducted three practices as the Tennessee Vols’ head coach, but he’s already liking what he sees from his team.

After practice on Saturday, Pruitt told reporters “I’m starting to like this team”.

Pruitt expanded further on that thought by explaining several players are playing with a “chip on their shoulder”. He was quick, however, to point out that not everyone is playing that way.

You can tell that Pruitt is taking a no-nonsense approach as Tennessee’s head coach. There’s no sugar coating anything — just a candid assessment of what he’s seeing (which is incredibly refreshing).

It’s a great sign that Pruitt is pleased with what he’s seen so far. But fans should still temper their expectations for the 2018 season. It’s going to take a while to break old habits and completely change the culture that developed near the end of the Butch Jones era.

Pruitt is clearly off to a great start, but that’s not nearly enough to turn Tennessee into a championship program.

Rome wasn’t built in a day and the Vols won’t turn into national champions because of 15 practices in the spring. It’ll take some time, but Pruitt is on the right track so far.

Here are a few other notes from Pruitt’s media session on Saturday.

  • Tyler Byrd has really good ball skills according to Pruitt. There’s a good chance he ends up at safety.
  • Vols will play a game and go through the Vol walk for the spring game. So no silly challenges or weird scoring system.
  • Pruitt said Jarrett Guarantano is throwing the ball well. He also said Guarantano and Will McBride are taking care of the ball well.
  • Pruitt chuckled when a reporter mentioned Tennessee’s failure to stop the run in recent years, saying “Boy you got that right”.
  • Darrell Taylor has moved from defensive end to outside linebacker in Pruitt’s defense.
  • Linebacker Daniel Bituli should be cleared for team drills in a week or two (knee).
  • Running back Tim Jordan had his appendix out and will miss a couple of weeks.
  • Linebacker Darrin Kirkland Jr had his knee cleaned up and should return in 2-3 weeks.

Featured image via Getty Images


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