Vols coach Butch Jones cancels player interviews after another poor practice
By Ben Frederickson, Knoxville News Sentinel
Tennessee coach Butch Jones yells at quarterback Joshua Dobbs as Justin Worley looks on during practice at Haslam Field. News Sentinel photo
KNOXVILLE (News Sentinel) -
For the second time in two days, Tennessee football coach Butch Jones left Haslam Field dissatisfied with his young football team.
In response, he canceled nine player interviews that had been scheduled to take place after Monday's practice. Vic Wharton, Jason Croom, Devrin Young, Josh Smith, Dimarya Mixon, Emmanuel Moseley, Devaun Swafford, Chris Weatherd and LaDarrell McNeil hit the showers early. In their place, Jones delivered a 15-minute speech on UT's standards, and how the Vols have been falling short.
“Everything is based on merit,” he said. “Today, I will be the one speaking to the media. Our players are going to earn the right to talk to the media. It's an honor and a privilege to represent this great football program in the way we practice. Right now, we have to stop using youth as a crutch, or as an excuse. It is what it is. It's where we're at in the program. Nobody cares. Our opponents don't care.”
Jones was hard on his team during the portion of Sunday's practice that was open to the media. He required players to restart stretching drills three times for things like a lack of clapping in unison and unbuckled chin straps. Then he sent the team's player staff, a council made up of about 15 leaders, across the field for a long series of sit-ups. The rest of the team engaged in Jones' “Circle of Life,” a bull-in-the-ring style hitting drill.