KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Tennessee football coach Jeremy Pruitt is staying true to his word where the Vols’ quarterback competition is concerned.
It’s truly open, with all four scholarship quarterbacks set to open camp getting equal repetitions.
“We’ll have four guys, we practice four groups, and those guys all get the same amount of reps and we’ll see how they develop over the summer and into fall camp,” Pruitt said Thursday in Kingsport, Tenn., at the final Big Orange Caravan stop of the 2018 tour.
“As we get closer to the times we scrimmage — we’ll scrimmage on the ninth [fall period] practice — we’ll chart things from Day 1 until that scrimmage and that will give us an idea about how they are going to scrimmage.”
Pruitt’s quarterback derby features Stanford graduate transfer Keller Chryst, returning sophomores Jarrett Guarantano and Will McBride, and incoming freshman JT Shrout.
Chryst and Shrout will soon arrive in Knoxville and begin mixing in with new teammates in unsupervised workouts.
“We’ll have summer conditioning and our guys will be at player-led practices,” Pruitt confirmed.
Pruitt said the summer workouts are particularly important for Chryst and Shrout as they attempt to learn offensive coordinator Tyson Helton’s system.
“I think for JT and Keller both, Will and Jarrett have 15 practices under their belt and they’ve had four months of being in the system, so those guys are that far behind,” Pruitt said. “I think they will need to spend time to catch up.”
Pruitt’s approach is strikingly similar to the approach his boss, Philip Fulmer, used in 2000 when Tennessee had a four-quarterback battle.
Back then, it was Joey Mathews, A.J. Suggs, Casey Clausen and Jon Rattay, and the battle was in spring drills with Clausen and Rattay as early enrollees.
Mathews, Suggs and Clausen all ended up starting games that season, and Rattay transferred out before the start of fall drills.
Pruitt has said he probably won’t know who his starting quarterback is until the fourth quarter of the season-opening game, and indicated that multiple starters could be ahead for the 2018 Vols, too.
Big Orange Caravan headlines
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- Phillip Fulmer finds SEC ADs more agreeable than coaches
- Jeremy Pruitt expects QB transfer Keller Chryst to provide lift
- Tennessee coaches and athletic department consider Atlanta ‘in state’
- Phillip Fulmer weighs in on Pruitt-Nick Saban debate
- Pruitt and Fulmer highlight different scheduling points
- Pruitt and Fulmer tired of hearing win total expectation questions
- Memphis or Nashville? Pruitt reveals 2019 recruiting preference
- Fulmer calls for timeout to review Neyland Stadium renovation plan
- Pruitt not backing down to Saban on transfer issue
- Pruitt expressing confidence in secondary
- Vols basketball coach Rick Barnes addressing missed NCAA tourney opportunity
- Fulmer brushes off Alabama, Georgia comparisons
- Vague answers from Pruitt fuel speculation on transfers, starters
- Pruitt reveals what he misses about recruiting
- Fulmer not allowing administrative turmoil to disrupt Tennessee athletics
- Pruitt learning that he and Fulmer ‘see a lot of things the same way’
- Fulmer leads Pruitt on caravan stop