KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -Tennessee offensive coordinator David Cutcliffe started preparing for games like Saturday's visit to No. 5 Florida during spring practice, when he introduced the no-huddle offensive scheme to his 22nd-ranked Vols.
``Everything you do offensively is geared toward being solid and sound and good against your best opponents,'' Cutcliffe said.
The no-huddle is designed to catch defenses unprepared, prevent them from substituting and wear out players with less time to rest between plays.
Cutcliffe said he's been happy with how quarterback Erik Ainge executed the no-huddle against Southern Miss and at No. 8 California, where the Vols (1-1) faced the kind of hostile environment that can disrupt such a scheme.
But the Swamp will be even louder for the game that usually has Southeastern Conference championship implications, coach Phillip Fulmer said.
``Our focus has got to be really, really good,'' he said. ``The noise level is probably going to be double what it was at Cal.''
Coaches briefly tried a type of no-huddle offense when Ainge was a freshman in 2004, calling plays from the sidelines, but scrapped it after it seemed to confuse him.
Now, Ainge is confident, collected and smart enough to change many of those calls according to what he sees from the defense, Cutcliffe said.
Ainge has spent hours with Cutcliffe reviewing the playbook and studying opponents on film. He has said he feels comfortable changing plays because he knows exactly what Cutcliffe would do.
Players and coaches have raved about Ainge's attitude and ability, crediting the senior quarterback for why the no-huddle has been disrupting defenses.
``If they do give us a signal from the sideline and he sees something different that needs to be called, he makes that call on the fly,'' tight end Chris Brown said. ``The coaches trust him to do the things he needs to do.''
Brown said it also helps that a number of offensive players can handle multiple assignments: Wide receivers can switch slots at a moment's notice, tailbacks and tight ends can catch and everyone can block.
The Gators lost nine starters off their championship defense, but Cutcliffe doesn't believe they're any less threatening.
The Vols likely will have to adjust quickly during the game as they lack a full understanding of what Florida's defense can do. There's little footage available for coaches to study the seven underclassmen starting on defense for the defending national champs.
The Gators (2-0) started their season against Western Kentucky and Troy, and Cutcliffe suspects coach Urban Meyer has quite a few plays he hasn't shown yet.
Brown said he's ready for whatever they throw at him.
``They like to play a lot of man coverage and just dare you to beat them,'' Brown said. ``We have to accept that challenge. They want to sit there and try to intimidate you. We're ready.''
Notes: Florida coach Urban Meyer is 2-0 against Tennessee. No Florida coach has ever defeated the Vols in his first three meetings. ... In 15 of the last 17 games in this series, the team that has had more yards rushing won the game.

Recent NCAAF Discussions

Handicapping 2016 Win Totals on Fri, May 2016 by Blade
2016 NFL Draft Props on Thu, Apr 2016 by Blade
NFL Draft Preview on Thu, Apr 2016 by Blade

NCAAF Headlines

More inNCAAF News  

NCAAF Top Stories

Thumbnail Cal lands Davis Webb The Cal Bears may have lost the No. 1 pick in the NFL Draft at quarterback, but the Golden Bears seem to have found a good replacement...
Thumbnail FSU dismisses running back The Florida State Seminoles have parted ways with running back Mario Pender after a recent arrest.
Thumbnail Hokies suspend two defenders The Justin Fuente era of Virginia Tech football isn’t off to a great start, as two defensive players have been indefinitely...
Thumbnail Buckeyes get 100K for Spring Game Ohio State may not have made the...
Thumbnail Petrino gets new contract Louisville is happy with the direction that Bobby Petrino is taking the football program and the Cardinals have given the head...
More inNCAAF Articles  

NCAAF Team Pages