You coached for five years at Georgia under Jim Donnan. Can you talk about your experience there?
Greg Adkins: "Quite obviously, Georgia is a great university with a great tradition in football and academics. I had the pleasure of working there for five years under Jim Donnan and the great leadership of Vince Dooley."
How important is it for the offense to get things going on the ground early in Saturday's game?
"The key in the Southeastern Conference is to run the football. You try to be as balanced as you can, but you take what the defense gives you. If we have the ability to run the football and they're giving that to us, then we need to take advantage of that situation. If they are giving us the pass early, then we need to try and protect our quarterback so he can sort out the defense and make the right throw."
Tennessee is tied for the fewest sacks allowed in the nation thus far. What has been the key to the offensive line's success on passing plays?
"I think a number of different things have played a part. It starts with Coach Cutcliffe changing up the protections, moving the pocket and avoiding the simple drop-back mode. Erik has demonstrated an ability to get the ball out of his hands quickly, and our running backs are doing a good job of reading and picking up blitzes. Really, the sack thing is not just on the offensive line. It's on 11 people making an effort out there, and so far we have been pretty good at it."
What do you expect from the Georgia defensive front?
"Georgia's defense is typical of Georgia defenses. They are very fast, very physical. They have great speed at defensive end and guys that can move well inside. They are a zone blitz team. We will zero out and play some man coverage. It's not anything very different from what we prepare for every week. We have to be ready for the speed of the defense more than anything else."
With this being Tennessee's first SEC home game, do you approach the week of practice with a different level of intensity?
"I think what you have to do is prepare your football team the same every week. Every game is important. You're only guaranteed 12 of them. Our guys are excited, as they are every week. That's why you work in the off-season, in the summer program and all week during practice, to have the opportunity to test yourself on Saturday. There is always intensity, and this an important game with it being an SEC East team, but I think you have to let the team feel the difference for themselves."
InSIDe the Vols -- SPECIAL TEAMS SURE TO FACTOR IN SATURDAY SHOWDOWN:
Tennessee wrapped up the practice portion of its Georgia preparations with a 90-minute workout Thursday...Practice time was split between Haslam Field and the Neyland-Thompson Sports Center because of a thunderstorm threat...Head coach Phillip Fulmer expects special teams once again to play a critical role in Saturday's outcome against Georgia ... "I addressed it with the team a week ago Monday when we had our first meeting about it, we worked on it all last week, I addressed it again Monday of this week and I addressed it again today -- that special teams have and will play an important part for us," Fulmer said.
"Certainly we have the talent to make some plays in the special teams area and Georgia does as well. It's always -- it's always -- an important part of the game. We've emphasized it; we've worked on it and looked at some different things, so I'm eager to see where we are with it. I expect good results." ... Last week's open date appears to have left the Vols as healthy as they've been all season...Only DE Andre Mathis is expected to miss Saturday's game...Expect to see junior Britton Colquitt resume kickoff duties...Colquitt was targeted for all three kicking chores -- punting, placements and kickoffs -- before injuring his quadriceps muscle in the preseason.
Redshirt freshman Daniel Lincoln retains the placekicking duties after his rocket start to the season...Fulmer also said true freshman Gerald Jones could return from a hamstring injury that has sidelined him for three weeks..."He's our second receiver and we need the depth there," Fulmer said. "He was doing really well before he pulled that hamstring and has kind of picked back up where he left off. It was a pretty quick recovery, according to our medical staff."
Don't forget -- the first 10,000 fans Saturday through gates 10 and 21 receive 2007 Official Trading Card Sets, courtesy of the University of Tennessee Medical Center...Gates open at 1:30 p.m...UT alum and multi-platinum recording artist Deana Carter performs with The Pride of the Southland Marching Band during Saturday's halftime.
INJURY UPDATE (Georgia Week) -- Out: DE Andre Mathis (shoulder).
UT ATHLETICS WELCOMES INGRAM BACK TO DEVELOPMENT TEAM:
Mark Ingram, a former Vols long snapper, has returned to Tennessee as the associate athletics director for development. With nearly 10 years of experience, including a previous stint with UT athletics, Ingram will be responsible for fundraising and donor relations.
"First and foremost, I would like to thank Mike Hamilton, Joan Cronan, John Currie, the VASF Staff, and numerous others in the Tennessee Athletics Department for giving my wife, Amy, and me this opportunity," Ingram said. "We are both Tennessee graduates, and we couldn't be more proud or excited to be back in Big Orange Country."
Ingram began his career at UT in 1992 as a student-athlete and worked in several different areas, including football operations and development, before his 2002 departure. During his first stint, he served as both an assistant director of marketing and an assistant director of development.
From 2002-07, Ingram held assistant athletics director positions at Missouri and Georgia.
"We are elated to have Mark return to the University of Tennessee, and we look forward to his leadership in helping us continue to meet the needs of our student-athletes," said John Currie, senior associate athletic director for external operations. "He's been vital to the development programs at the University of Missouri, as well as Georgia, and we know he will be here at UT. He brings vast experience, determination and success to the table, and we look forward to working with him once again."
Ingram received a bachelor's and master's degree in sport management from UT. Originally from Sneads Ferry, N.C., Ingram lettered two seasons during his 1992-96 playing tenure with the Vols.
Story Courtesy: UT Sports Information