Marshall preparations postive; Harrell hanging around

Thursday, September 21, 2006

There's nothing like ending the week on a positive.

Tennessee head coach Phillip Fulmer liked what he saw from his Vols during Thursday's practice session at Haslam Field. UT worked for 1 hour and 45 minutes finalizing game plans for Saturday's visit from Marshall.

"I tell you what, we had one heck of a good practice today," Fulmer said. "I am really pleased with what we got done. This is about commitment to each other, about physical toughness, mental toughness, about continuing improvement.

"It's about other players stepping up after the losses of good players who ordinarily would be out there and becoming a good football team. Now we need to take that same enthusiasm to the game field Saturday. We need to play with intensity and passion and play like that for 60 minutes, from start to finish."

That's been the emphasis of the week as Tennessee prepares for its final a pair of non-conference games against Conference USA competition -- Marshall this week and then at Memphis a week from Saturday.

The Vols, 2-1, are getting support from a familiar face in the person of injured defensive tackle Justin Harrell.

"We have to call him 'Coach Harrell' now," Fulmer said. "He's been out here helping; he's been in meetings and is one of the leaders and captains of this football team. I wouldn't expect anything less from a guy like him. He's one of those guys you want to stay around as long as you can keep them around."