KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — When Butch Jones was asked about starting over at quarterback, the Tennessee football coach made it clear he doesn’t view things that way.
“I don’t look at it as restarting,” Jones said on Monday’s SEC football coaches teleconference. “We have some talented and capable individuals, it’s a team game, and everyone around them is doing their jobs of playing winning football.”
Tennessee lost the SEC’s most efficient and productive quarterback last season, 3-year starter and Pittsburgh Steelers’ 4th round pick Josh Dobbs.
But junior Quinten Dormady enjoyed a 10-for-10, 2-TD passing performance in the Vols’ spring game, exhibiting the type of poise and game management skills needed to compete at the collegiate level.
Tennessee also has one of the top young dual-threat quarterbacks in the country in the form of redshirt freshman Jarrett Guarantano.
Guarantano was 4-of-5 passing for 41 yards in the Orange and White Game, band his skills and athleticism are obvious to everyone.
“I thought Quinten Dormady had a very productive spring, and Jarrett Guarantano as well,” Jones said. “The thing that helped their growth and development was being able to watch Josh Dobbs — not just on the field, but in the community and just everything that goes along with being the starting quarterback at the University of Tennessee.”
Jones has said the competition between the quarterbacks will continue into fall camp, and first-year offensive coordinator Larry Scott made it clear there’s no rush to settle the order.
It’s quite possible and even likely Tennessee will use two quarterbacks in its Sept 4 opener in Atlanta against Georgia Tech.