Tennessee spring game 2017: Watch live stream, TV channel, start time, date
TV and live stream information for the 2017 Tennessee spring game
Saturday's spring game concludes coach Butch Jones' fifth offseason in Knoxville. However, this is a year unlike any other for Jones on Rocky Top. There have been shakeups among the coaches -- more than half the staff is either new or has a different role -- and plenty of starting jobs up for grabs.
The time to win the SEC East has already arrived. Jones needs to take his program to the next step, but will a new-look Vols be the group to do it? We won't know that for about another seven months, but fans will get their first real look at the team over the weekend.
How to watch
Date: Saturday, April 22
Time: 4 p.m. ET
Location: Neyland Stadium -- Knoxville, Tennessee
Players to watch
Offense: Junior Quinten Dormady leads a fierce quarterback battle and he's been the primary backup to Joshua Dobbs the past two seasons, but don't overlook redshirt freshman Jarrett Guarantano, considered to be the "1B" option by Mike Griffith of SEC Country. (Redshirt sophomore Sheriron Jones is in the running as well.) Guarantano is a bit more athletic than Dormady, though not by a significant margin.
It's unlikely a starter will be named until preseason camp. In those types of position battles, the personal recommendation is to always keep an eye on the younger guy. Sometimes, the longer a battle rages, the more likely it is the perceived backup is legitimately pushing for the starting job. The possibility of both Dormady and Guarantano seeing the field this fall is definitely there.
Defense: Defensive end Darrell Taylor has been the talk of spring ball, as has fellow D-lineman Jonathan Kongbo before he sustained a knee injury this month. The Vols' defensive line was beastly last season before injuries and attrition took their tolls. If that group can't reload, it's going to be problematic for the rest of the defense. Taylor has earned the praise of his coaches, now it's time to see if he can pick up where Derek Barnett and Co. left off.
It's new faces, hands down. New faces calling plays and new faces executing them. For all of Jones' perceived shortcomings, recruiting has never been an issue. What Tennessee lacks in overall starting experience, it should more than make up for with raw skill. Now it's a matter of that talent coming together under a mostly new coaching staff. There's a ways to go before any real judgments can be made, but Saturday should tell us who's stepping up as needed.
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