KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Sophomore Quinten Dormady will open the season against Appalachian State on Sept. 1 as Tennessee’s No. 2 quarterback behind incumbent Josh Dobbs, according to Vols coach Butch Jones.
“Right now it’s Josh and Quinten, and Quinten is obviously one snap away,” Jones said at his Tuesday press conference at the Ray and Lucy Hand Digital Studio. “I thought (Dormady) had his best practice yesterday.
“I thought he was in command, he made all the throws.”
Dormady appeared in six games last season and was 13-of-22 passing for 209 yards with a touchdown.
Tennessee freshman Jarrett Guarantano has impressed, perhaps exhibiting the best blend of running ability and throwing power and accuracy among the Vols quarterbacks in the portions of practice open to media.
Guarantano, however, was not among UT’s early enrollees in January, so he didn’t have the benefit of going through spring drills.
Tennessee second-year offensive coordinator Mike DeBord has been impressed with Dormady and Guarantano.
“I thought Quinten had his best practice yesterday; he took the second group right down and scored and really executed very well,” DeBord said Tuesday. “Jarrett continues every day to work hard and get better and continues to learn the offense.”
Jones said he likes the competition in the quarterback room.
“Those three are competing every day, (and) Sheriron Jones is a little bit limited,” Jones said, referring to an unspecified leg injury suffered in spring drills. “I’ve liked the growth and development in Jarrett as well, and we’re bringing him along.
“They are all pushing each other, that’s the great thing about that room, is they are all very competitive,” he said. “They compete in everything. They compete in the meeting room, they compete in individuals, and that’s what we want. Competition is healthy, (and) that’s how you improve.”
Mike Griffith covers Tennessee football for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s SEC Country and lives in Knoxville.