Dooley: Game-week prep like "money in the bank" - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Dooley: Game-week prep like "money in the bank"

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KNOXVILLE (UT Sports) -- Tennessee began ‘depositing' its preparations Monday at Haslam Field for the 2011 season opener Saturday against Montana. Much like a bank account, the Vols are trying to invest enough to shop -- for a win.

"We have a lot of new guys," head coach Derek Dooley. "We have to teach them what it means to prepare. I equated it to every day depositing money in your bank account. Every day, the investment that you put in physically and the investment you put in mentally is a deposit. On game day, you withdraw it all. The more you deposit during the week, the more money you're going to have on game day to play well. Today, we put a pretty good deposit in and we'll see if we can keep going all week."

The Vols will need to continue to make deposits like the one they did Monday to be ready for the Grizzlies, an opponent they're not taking lightly.

"They're the winningest program in the last decade in Division I," said Dooley, who is entering his second season in Knoxville. "If you take all Division I teams, A and AA, nobody has had more wins in the last decade. They've won about 15 out of 17 conference championships, three national championships in the last 10 years and so, it's a program that we have a lot of respect for. It's a prideful program.

"They have a lot of good football players. You can't win that much if you don't. They're incredibly coached. They're tough. They're disciplined. They're smart. They play with great effort. When you watch the film, it's no secret why they've had so much success. They believe in their systems. They play their tails off and they have a lot of good football players. We're going to have our work cut out for us."

The excitement surrounding the Vols' first official game week of the 2011 season was evident, but Tennessee is taking things one day at a time.

"My big thing is let's go to work today," Dooley said. "You want to kind of build-up emotionally but I wish I could predict it. I've had weeks where we had a terrible practice, I think we're going to get our tails whipped and we go play great. I have weeks where we look great and ready and we go play terrible. I think there is a preparation component. What you're just trying to do is have a lot of consistency in your approach and know that the last 24 to 48 hours, it's time to really amp it up mentally. If you learn how to start managing that during the week, you'll usually have a lot more consistent play."

Information courtesy of UT Sports Information Department and UTSports.com.

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