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UT’s Chaney Says Bray Still Iffy

When the season began, most in the media expected Vanderbilt to win somewhere between two and four games.  Most in the media expected Tennessee to win either six or seven contests. 

In other words, this weekend’s matchup wasn’t supposed to mean very much.  But, oh, does it.  Vandy can become bowl eligible with a win and it can slam the door on UT’s bowl hopes.  That’d be a heckuva twofer on Nashville’s West End.

The key to the game will likely be Vol quarterback Tyler Bray who’s trying to work his way back into the starting line-up after breaking his thumb in October.  Offensive coordinator Jim Chaney doesn’t sound excited by the progress he’s seen:

“As you watch a kid who hasn’t thrown a football for four or five weeks, which you would expect, there are times when he looks okay, times when he looks really rusty — and you worry about those things.  I don’t know what the rest of the week is going to add up to right now.  He’s in and out.  He looks good, okay.  Sometimes he doesn’t look so good.  It’s an iffy situation for us as we approach every day right now. … We’re just trying to get through it.”

It’s hard to imagine Tennessee trying to get through it without starting Bray on Saturday.  His presence might give a floundering offense a quick injection of confidence.  That is if he’s not too rusty or in too much pain to pass the ball accurately.

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SEC Headlines – 4/13/11

1.  Something for college players contemplating a jump to the NBA to consider: The league has canceled this year’s summer league in Las Vegas.

2.  How the Nick Saban statue came to be at Alabama.

3.  Some Alabama practice notes.

4.  Some Auburn practice notes. 

5.  Some Arkansas practice notes… and Quinta Funderburk has returned.

6.  The Hogs’ new basketball aides will be well paid.

7.  This writer thinks Les Miles should switch from Jordan Jefferson to Zach Mettenberger at quarterback despite what supposedly went on at all those closed practices this spring.

8.  Some Ole Miss practice notes.

9.  Mississippi State’s offensive line won’t face lowered expectations because they’re young.

10.  MSU has signed another basketball player and one more could be on the way.

11.  New Billy Donovan assistant Norm Roberts shares New York roots with his boss.

12.  Trinton Sturdivant’s latest injury creates a big hold on Georgia’s offensive line.

13.  Some Georgia practice notes.

14.  With the NBA facing a lockout, UGA’s Travis Leslie now says he’ll stay in the NBA draft along with Trey Thompkins.

15.  Some Kentucky basketball notes.

16.  Point guard Wes Washpun has signed with Tennessee.

17.  Former Bruce Pearl assistant Steve Forbes has taken a head coaching job at a Florida junior college.

18.  New Vanderbilt coach James Franklin has now been added to a Wall of Fame mural in Nashville’s West End.

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Vandy Still Looking For A D-Line Coach; Secondary Coach Reportedly Onboard

Earlier this week, we told you that Vanderbilt — though no official announcement has been made — had hired Bob Shoop (from William & Mary) and Brent Pry (from Georgia Southern) to act as co-defensive coordinators. — the Rivals site covering the Commodores — has also reported that new coach James Franklin has hired former Miami Hurricanes secondary coach Wesley McGriff.  McGriff (photo at left) would be the first member of Vandy’s new staff to have recruited extensively in the Deep South for an FBS school.  In addition to Miami, he also spent two seasons on Guy Morriss’ staff at Kentucky.

As was the case with his offensive staff, Franklin apparently wants to announce his defensive hires all at once.  So until he inks a defensive line coach, expect no official announcements from Nashville’s West End.

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