Three Tennessee assistant coaches met with the media on Wednesday afternoon to discuss their players and Fall Camp 2020.
WR coach Tee Martin had high praise for two returning receivers “Ramel Keyton and Josh Palmer are two of the most intelligent receivers I’ve ever coached. Both of those guys can run, jump and their smart. We’ll definitely rely on those guys”
It should come as no surprise that Martin would be excited to have former USc WR and Tennessee grad transfer Velus Jones Jr. in his group. This pair has a good amount of history, when Tee was coaching at USC.
So when asked about what Jones brings to this team, Martin said “Definitely will be a threat in the kick return game, both as a kickoff returner and a punt returner. The one thing that you can’t replace when guys transfer, what you can’t underestimate, is experience. Even though he’s new to our system, he’s played college football at a major level and he’s played in some big moments and been called on in some big moments. He’s new, just like the true freshmen are, but the one thing that he has a leg up is that he’s been in college football for a few years, he’s a veteran”
“It’s been about as good as you can expect. Obviously, these young men went their separate ways after spring and were in different cities. We slowly started to get them back, had limited opportunities, and I think that you couldn’t ask for a better chemistry with the situation. I think Jarrett (Guarantano) is very direct about what he likes and what he wants, As Martin discussed the bond between the QB’s and WR’s.
Martin was asked his thoughts on the freshman WR’s who continue to push their teammates and what they bring to the team “First thing I would say is speed. That was something that we wanted to address in last year’s recruiting class. We want to push the ball downfield vertically and we want to create matchup mismatches on offense, and you can’t do it without speed.”
Having the freshman group pick up the offense in a hurry will be key for playing time, but sometimes you just just have those guys who you can throw in to make a play. One of those guys is Malachi Wideman, who Martin said ” “He has probably the most upside of everyone because he’s coming in probably the most raw of them all”. Wideman will be a player Tennessee needs contribute to this offense as the season progresses on.
Tee Martin also mentioned that Dee Beckwith has been switching back and forth between the TE and WR room. “He has the skill set, always asking questions, just need a lot of reps,” as Martin put it.
This group will continue to get better as they build upon their relationship with QB Jarrett Guarantano. This is a receiving core that will have to rely on a few freshman at times, it sounds like they’re up for the challenge.
All Images Courtesy Of Tennessee Athletic Communications