The situation surrounding a Title IX lawsuit against the University of Tennessee continues to get more interesting by the day.
A day after former Vols wide receiver Drae Bowles claimed in a sworn affidavit that Tennessee coach Butch Jones called him a “traitor” for helping a victim of sexual assault and hours after athletics director Dave Hart met with the media to address the claims that the athletic department has created a “hostile sexual environment,” several players have issues their own responses.
The following are quotes from Tennessee football players at the program’s VFL Career Night, which is an annual networking event:
Linebacker Jalen Reeves-Maybin
“We’ve worked hard to build the culture we’ve got here,” Reeves-Maybin said, according to Patrick Brown of the Chattanooga Times Free Press. We’ve got great guys in the locker room. None of us are perfect. None of y’all are perfect. Nobody outside of here is perfect. Some guys here made some mistakes, but we’ve got a lot of guys who the right thing in life. … The culture we’ve built here has been great. We’ve got a lot of guys that will vouch for us. We’re being attacked right now. It’s kind of unfair to us, but it’s something we can get through.”
“If you don’t feel safe around us, would you come around 100 of us every day and play football?” Reeves-Maybin said of Bowles, according to Rucker.
Former offensive lineman Kyler Kerbyson
“I never heard of anything happening to Drae,” Kerbyson said, according to Rucker. “He spent the whole season with us and was upbeat.”
Quarterback Josh Dobbs
“A lot of people are saying a lot of things about our program that aren’t true,” Dobbs said, according to Wes Rucker of 247Sports.
“You’re on a platform from the moment Tennessee starts recruiting you,” Dobbs said, according to Rucker. “Some guys realize that later than others.”
“Our hearts and our prayers go out to (the alleged sexual victims),” Dobbs said, according to Rucker. “We hope they find peace.”
Running back Alvin Kamara
“We have discipline here,” Kamara said, according to Rucker. “If you miss a single class, ever, you’re in there running at 6 a.m. No question.”
“I could have gone a lot of places, but I came here, and the culture was one of the main reasons I did,” Kamara said, according to Rucker.