With 44 players out, Vols unable to scrimmage

By: The Associated Press
Published: Saturday, September 5, 2020
Tennessee head coach Jeremy Pruitt watches the first half of an NCAA college football game against Vanderbilt, Saturday, Nov. 30, 2019, in Knoxville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Wade Payne)
Tennessee head coach Jeremy Pruitt watches the first half of an NCAA college football game against Vanderbilt, Saturday, Nov. 30, 2019, in Knoxville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Wade Payne)

— Tennessee football coach Jeremy Pruitt said he had to turn a scheduled scrimmage into a regular practice Saturday because 44 players could not practice.

Pruitt said those players hadn’t been at the last three or four practices, and the Vols were left with only 30 offensive players. That forced coaches to focus on two groups in situational work.

Of the 44 Volunteers who did not practice, Pruitt said seven or eight of those are active covid-19 cases. Three players are dealing with injuries or surgeries. Pruitt says approximately 27 or 28 are in quarantine.

Pruitt said Tennessee has had 48 players who have missed at least 14 days due to quarantine, with four quarantined twice. Some self-reported, and Pruitt says one eventually tested positive for covid-19. He said they are working through contract tracing.

Teams are allowed 25 practices, and Pruitt said Tennessee probably will end up with 20 or 22 practices barring a change over the next couple weeks. He said they’re learning as they go and it’s been tough to prepare a team to play.

Tennessee is scheduled to open the season with a game at South Carolina on Sept. 26.

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