Tennessee's defensive success will come from 'trust in the scheme'

Tennessee's defensive success will come from 'trust in the scheme'

Football

Tennessee's defensive success will come from 'trust in the scheme'

KNOXVILLE — Defensive coordinator Kevin Sherrer met with the media on the eve of fall training camp kicking off.

Sherrer went over numerous topics regarding UT’s defense.

To be successful in the SEC, stopping the run is key in competing for divisional and conference championships.

“The fundamental parts of playing the run and playing blocks and assignments and playing assignment ball and being tied together as a defense is where you have to start at,” Sherrer said of stopping the run this season. “For us, it starts up front with the defensive line. Those guys have got to do their job and control the run and strike with their hands.

“The linebackers have got to fit off of that and then the secondary has to be able to fit off the linebackers. What each guy has to do is trust in the scheme and know that if I do my job, then we’re going to be successful.”

Sherrer also said that he would like to rotate as many guys that he can.

“The more you have then the better off you’re going to be,” he said. “We’re going to press our guys to compete every day and a lot of it depends on the limitations we have when we’re on the road traveling and things like that.

“If we can get three-deep at every position, that’s great. We’re going to play as many guys as we can because that’s our philosophy. We’re not going to go out there and keep guys fresh on the sidelines. We’re going to put them in and let them play.”

Trusting the scheme and having as many players be an impact on the field goes hand-in-hand with players trusting each other and having leaders step up. Finding leaders can be a gradual sequence that goes along with players and coaches continuing to feel each other out.

“A lot of those guys are still trying to feel us out just like we’re trying to feel them out, but that’s important,” Sherrer said. “You need leaders on your team every year and depend on guys who have experience playing college football in this league. You’re going to depend on some guys that play certain positions where you need them to be vocal for the team. That’s going to be big for us.

“We’re going to need guys that when things aren’t going the way they need to be then they can step up and respond to that. We don’t know who those guys are yet, but we’re going to find out during fall camp.”

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