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Fulmer disciplines Vereen, makes entire team run at 6 a.m.

Tennessee football coach Phillip Fulmer said Tuesday that Daryl Vereen must perform community service and will be subject to a semester-long curfew following the freshman tailback’s arrest for public intoxication and underage consumption early Monday morning.

Campus police arrested Vereen, who turned 19 on Tuesday, after responding to a call of a fight outside Gibbs Hall, a student residence located across the street from the Neyland-Thompson Sports Center.

“I am extremely disappointed in Daryl and his actions,” Fulmer said in a statement released Tuesday evening. “I have met him individually and talked with his parents. He is aware that I will not tolerate this type of behavior and he has a lot of work to do, including performing community service with a drug rehabilitation facility, participating in police ride-alongs and a semester-long curfew.”

According to UT, Fulmer also made the entire team run at 6 a.m. Tuesday, following the second off-field incident involving Tennessee players in less than two weeks.

None of the players involved has been suspended from games or practices.

“We have a great group of young men, but the actions of a few taint the image of all of them,” Fulmer said. “These young men need to understand that they represent the University of Tennessee and our football program and these immature actions need to stop.”

On Jan. 11, wide receivers Ahmad Paige, 18, and Gerald Jones, 18, were cited for misdemeanor possession of marijuana after Knoxville police found two marijuana cigars in Paige’s car following a traffic stop in the Fort Sanders area while hosting a recruit on his official visit.

Neither player — nor freshman offensive lineman William Brimfield, who was in the vehicle but not charged — was suspended.

All three, however, will be subject to more frequent drug testing, as well as community service and participation in a police ride-along. None will be allowed to host a recruit for one year.

Vereen’s arrest came shortly after 3 a.m. on Monday, when UT police said they observed as many as 10 people fighting in the fire lane outside Gibbs Hall.

As the others involved in the fight went inside the dorm, an officer noticed Vereen moving toward his dark blue Jeep Cherokee, which was parked in the fire lane.

In the UT police report released Tuesday, the officer told Vereen several times not to enter his vehicle. Vereen entered the Jeep on the driver’s side front door, but the officer caught up to Vereen and ordered him out of the vehicle.

“Mr. Vereen had a bloody lip and had a strong odor of alcoholic beverage coming from and about his person and breath,” the report says. “His speech was very slurred and he had blood shoot (sic) eyes.”

The report said Vereen was unsteady on his feet after exiting the vehicle.

He was arrested and taken to the Knox County Detention Center because the officer deemed Vereen “unable to care for his own safety or would be a danger to others.”

A friend parked Vereen’s Jeep in a legal parking space on campus, and Vereen’s keys were returned to him later, police said.

Vereen, a Charlotte, N.C. native, redshirted in 2007, a year after setting the Mecklenburg County rushing record with 2,603 yards and 31 touchdowns as a senior in 2006.

Tennessee begins spring practice March 11.

Drew Edwards covers University of Tennessee football. He may be reached at 865-342-6274.

© 2007, Knoxville News Sentinel Co.

       177 Comments

Posted by firetst on January 22, 2008 at 5:16 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Good for Coach Fulmer. Discipline was swift and adequate. Great time to let the team know there will be no BS.

Posted by stroker on January 22, 2008 at 5:16 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Don't see how any naysayers can disagree or critize CPF for this resolution.

Posted by AlpharettaVol on January 22, 2008 at 5:16 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I think ole Phil is resorting to a little peer pressure when everyone gets punished for Vereen's action. Maybe a few of the other guys can explain to him in no uncertain terms why this can't happen again.

Posted by TommyJack on January 22, 2008 at 5:17 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Seems reasonable to me. I'm sure all will agree...

Posted by waterskier3 on January 22, 2008 at 5:18 p.m. (Suggest removal)

who cares its basketball season with real championship caliber teams in action... are we turning into a basketball school while kentucky is turning into a football school?????? what's wrong with this picture :) GO VOLS!!!

Posted by CrankE on January 22, 2008 at 5:19 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I like it.

How long did they run, 15 minutes?

Posted by tddawson on January 22, 2008 at 5:22 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I'm not one to side with Mr. Fulmer, but this was well said and the right thing to do. The whole team needs to run and they ALL need to do the right things. Everyone of them needs to know that the coach is in charge. Unfortunately, the whole team has to pay for a few but I think that Mr. Vereen just got caught when the others didn't, they all need to do the right thing, or they all should share the punishment THIS TIME. The next time Mr. Vereen will be packing and then he has thrown away his chance to play for The University of Tennnessee.

Posted by sjt18 on January 22, 2008 at 5:23 p.m. (Suggest removal)

They need to run every Saturday and Sunday morning at 6 am for an hour... those that deserve to pay a price will identify themselves by bowing to the rising sun.

Posted by sjt18 on January 22, 2008 at 5:25 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Oh, I've defended CPF... but read what the press release said. The ONLY thing that seems to have anything to do with his personal discretion is the running.

The other details of Vereen's punishment sounded exactly like the "first strike" punishment that Jones, Paige, and Brimfield got.

Posted by pdhuff on January 22, 2008 at 5:26 p.m. (Suggest removal)

That action will at least bring some non-friendly stares from fellow travelers on the Vol highway of life. You go, Phil.

Posted by sjt18 on January 22, 2008 at 5:27 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Doggone it TJ, when I zig, you zag.

THE BEST THING IN THIS ALL is the semester long curfew... except it should be a year.

Posted by mbradshaw1 on January 22, 2008 at 5:31 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I must be in the "Twilight Zone" I just posted a comment to sjt18 on this story and it posted on the Vereene page?

Posted by pdhuff on January 22, 2008 at 5:32 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Well, its not up to "blunt" standards, but ol' Vereen has at least surmounted the 300+ posting standard with a few cold ones. 3 articles , no less.

Posted by TommyJack on January 22, 2008 at 5:35 p.m. (Suggest removal)

sjt: I truly think it's a pretty fair sentence. The real leaders on the team will doubtless break Vereen's er uh chops.

Posted by TouchdownTN on January 22, 2008 at 5:35 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Lack of institutional control as usual. Until players no FOOLmer is going to be tough, they will continue to bend the rules to the limit. I do like the fact that the entire team has to run. Maybe the good apples will take some of the bad apples under their wing and yank their chain if they get out of line. Message: You hurt yourself, you hurt the entire team. Everyone gets punished for the actions of a few reckless players.
Not a good way to make friends Vareen.

Posted by jr8657 on January 22, 2008 at 5:36 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I hope this sends a message to the entire team that you win as a team and you lose as a team. This, I hope will make an impact not only on Vereen but the entire team! I just hope this type action will cease...soon! Because if it don't it could get ugly in a hurry. It's the first time that I can remember that Coach Fulmer has penalized the entire team for a transgression of one member of the team, at least the first time that it has been made public. I think it's a great idea, hopefully everyone will begin to account for each other.

Posted by Kingpost on January 22, 2008 at 5:44 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Good thing Coker wasn't still on the team or this wouldn't have mattered

Posted by VOLinDAWGland on January 22, 2008 at 5:44 p.m. (Suggest removal)

The team punishment is exactly what I was hoping for and I hope this is the beginning of having some team leaders emerge that will apply some peer pressure to the rest of their teammates. I also agree with Vereen losing his late night freedom for awhile. This is a firmer and quicker response by Fulmer than in 2004 and other years. Could be another sign of how Fulmer has changed and is changing things since the 2005 crash.

Posted by tngeoff on January 22, 2008 at 5:48 p.m. (Suggest removal)

VOLinDAWGland.

I agree. Good enough and a change.

Posted by thesavageorange on January 22, 2008 at 5:50 p.m. (Suggest removal)

VOLinDAWGland ,My thoughts exactly.This team needs leaders.This may be the first avenue for the naturally born leaders to step up.Can you imagine back in 98, some freshman having to explain to Al Wilson why he had to get up at 6:00am and run.He may have gotten his beak racked again.

Posted by tigervol9802 on January 22, 2008 at 5:59 p.m. (Suggest removal)

If any of you have played any type of sports, then you know there is nothing that makes you make sure that you keep others in line than when you are punished for their mistakes.

On the flip-side, as an individual, there was nothing that made you feel worse than when you knew the entire team was ready to beat you because they suffered from your screw-up.

Somewhat wonder if this is a new idea brought in by the new guys. Whatever it is, I like it.

Posted by thesavageorange on January 22, 2008 at 6 p.m. (Suggest removal)

tigervol9802 ,Well stated.

Posted by givim6 on January 22, 2008 at 6:01 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Military has been doing the "punish all for the weakness of one" routine for years. It Works!!
Been there, Done that. Team pressure will come down on him like a ton of bricks.

Posted by VOLinDAWGland on January 22, 2008 at 6:01 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Sometimes leaders emerge through sheer force of personality, other times - probably most other times, leaders need to be identified and activily encouraged/challenged. I think part of Fulmer's style in the past was to just let the natural leaders emerge. When the program started to slide after 2000 there was a glaring lack of any identifiable leaders. This team has some good leadership prospects - Foster, Berry, Crompton are the obvious ones, there's probably others ready to step up if/when challenged by the coaches.

Posted by VolCR on January 22, 2008 at 6:05 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Wow...a 6 am run. They'll be mad about it that morning while the coaches are yelling at them, but once it's done, they'll be laughing about it in the locker room. More like a high school move to me. That'll teach em.

Posted by VOLinDAWGland on January 22, 2008 at 6:08 p.m. (Suggest removal)

During the good years of the late eighties to the NCS there were a nearly unbroken string of good leaders that all of us could name. It would be easy and natural to get used to that and not be prepared to step in when that string was finally broken, which happened around 2000. Fulmer allowed himself to get caught in a comfort zone that didn't exist after 2000. Times seem to be changing for the better the past two years with Sears and Mayo last year, Mayo and Ainge and Foster and Xavier this past year with Berry emerging. I'd like to see some of the big uglies emerge as leadership enforcers like ol' Billy Ratcliff.

Posted by qwerty6969 on January 22, 2008 at 6:09 p.m. (Suggest removal)

One of the earlier posters questioned if the team's punishment run this morning might have been a walk in the park. Hardly. There were 20 trash cans positioned in the practice complex, most of which were receiving active use as puke receptacles.

It was a serious and intense punishment.

Posted by VOLinDAWGland on January 22, 2008 at 6:11 p.m. (Suggest removal)

VolCR,
The problem with women commenting on men's sports is that it is really quite impossible for them to relate and understand for two reasons:
1. you ain't a man
2. most women haven't played physical team sports and even those that have such as bball are coached differently and treated differently then the males because they ARE different

Posted by invisiblekid on January 22, 2008 at 6:13 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Also agree with the post tigerVol9802. At the end of the day, much of the responsibility lies with CPF, but there needs to be some leadership and internal policing by the players as well.

Posted by VOLinDAWGland on January 22, 2008 at 6:13 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Thanks for the scoop qwerty,
Smells a bit like the new coaching blood is making an impact.

Posted by thesavageorange on January 22, 2008 at 6:14 p.m. (Suggest removal)

VolCR ,What would you suggest?Just wondering.You could suspend them for the UAB game, but I don't think that says much.That's what Richt did to his player who was cited for underage drinking.Suspended for the Georgia Southern game.Doesn't sound that bad to me unless Vereen was hoping for mop up duty.

Posted by TommyJack on January 22, 2008 at 6:23 p.m. (Suggest removal)

VOLinDawg: hahahahaha

Posted by nafslov on January 22, 2008 at 6:28 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Really Sick !!!!! Please let Coach Fulmer do his "thing" ! I'm really sick of WATE and their so called "sports team" using their medium to make the Vols a tabloid type team and suggesting these kids ( Yes I did say kids !) are criminals. Wow ! I'm really lucky I didn't do those hidious things such as drink alcohol or smoke pot when I was in college ! ( lucky I didn't caught) Give these players and Coach Fulmer a break folks ! Go Vols !

Posted by BigOrangeInCarolina on January 22, 2008 at 6:29 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I don't think they'll be laughing when they're out in 20-degree weather and their lungs feel like they're on fire. I think it's a good move by Fulmer, and he needs to keep it up. Hopefully the leadership will emerge and take his hiney behind the shed for a few minutes...

Posted by tigervol9802 on January 22, 2008 at 6:29 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I'm pretty sure some of the folks who bash these moves probably never went to junior college, much less a 4 year school, and can't imagine how much 6 am itself sucks to a college student.

I've been trying to think how pissed off I would have been had I been in one of the following groups and had to been there at 6 am.

Coaches
Players
Grad assistants
Managers
Trainers

Then I am sure after all of this at the end there was a statement made along the lines of "Guys, next time it will be worse."

Posted by mparker12 on January 22, 2008 at 6:29 p.m. (Suggest removal)

No, CPF messed up. He should make all us FANS run at 6 a.m.

betcha those players won't mess up after seeing a bunch of fat middle-aged white guys rumbling around the track...they'll be laughting too hard!!!!

Posted by snowvol on January 22, 2008 at 6:31 p.m. (Suggest removal)

At what point does one of these incidents bring about a suspension that involves a game or two next season? I don't care how disappointed Phil is, his disappointment doesn't seem to raise the bar on players fearing what happens if they screw up. Tougher discipline on these kids. The old line about boys just being boys, or teenagers doing stupid things...that's great, until someone kills someone because he was drunk behind the wheel or loaded up on drugs. Yes, it happens in everyday life, and many will say this kind of behavior is just a reflection of society. But there's one difference: Society generally requires a bigger penalty than what Fulmer doles out.

Posted by TommyJack on January 22, 2008 at 6:32 p.m. (Suggest removal)

mparker: Can't run. Will bring a note.

Posted by ATLVOL1 on January 22, 2008 at 6:32 p.m. (Suggest removal)

"gentlemen: run your rears off all the way to Krispy Kreme and back, oh and Vereen pick me up a dozen"

Posted by thesavageorange on January 22, 2008 at 6:36 p.m. (Suggest removal)

mparker12 ,Very funny.That image should keep me laughing for a day or so.I got winded walking to the mail box this morning.

Posted by pjhaddix on January 22, 2008 at 6:36 p.m. (Suggest removal)

VOLinDAWGland, do you really think that Pat Summitt, given her reputation, goes easy on her girls?? I seriously doubt it.

Posted by DennisVols on January 22, 2008 at 6:43 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I liked the team punishment as well as the player. During my term in the Army we were treated as one. If one screwed up we all got punished. We were all accountable for each other and it made us closer as a unit.
These players need to understand that their individual actions not only is a reflection of them but of the whole team.

Posted by banjo on January 22, 2008 at 6:43 p.m. (Suggest removal)

This should have been started several years ago for "any" violation of team rules. When enough of them get tired of the screw-ups on the team, they'll (the players) take care of it internally.
BRAVO PHIL!!!!!

Posted by thesavageorange on January 22, 2008 at 6:44 p.m. (Suggest removal)

snowvol,I understand where you are coming from, however if CPF doles out stricter penalties than anyone else in the conference,how long would it take for the word to get around to recruits.Players start transfering,other coaches use it against us in recruiting etc..If we ended a season w/ 5 wins again everyone would want Fulmer's head.No one would step up and say, but we are the most disiplined team in the conference.This is a necessary evil in college football.That is if you want to keep you're job.

Posted by Titan on January 22, 2008 at 6:46 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Peer pressure is a great motivator. Other things haven't worked too well - it's worth a try.

Posted by spencer1989 on January 22, 2008 at 6:57 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Sounds like someone forget to work on the charts.

Posted by VolPowers on January 22, 2008 at 6:57 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I'd like for Fulmer to define running...are we talking about a jog, gassers, running the gate at Neyland Stadium, what? Then I'd know how to respond about this form of punishment.

The other thing that cracks me up is the Police. On every Police report it says about a strong odor of alocohol coming from the suspect. Guess what? Not all alcohol gives off an odor! I would bet my last penny that the fuzz has a play book that they run through whenever someone is suspected of an alocohol offense, whether it's accurate or not. I appreciate what Police do for the community, but jesus christ, think for yourselves.

Posted by DennisVols on January 22, 2008 at 6:58 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Just in on Atlanta news: Richt just doubled the punishment of one the the 2 players suspended due to drinking. The player apparently did not handle what was expected of him following the original punishment.
Man that is tough. LOL

Posted by sjt18 on January 22, 2008 at 6:58 p.m. (Suggest removal)

snowvol, CPF is basically following the normal policy and punishment guidelines. I like the curfew especially.

The 6 AM runs might have been a little weightier if they'd been every day until spring ball.

Group punishment was officially banned by the DoD a few years ago because it so frequently led to blanket parties. If I'm not mistaken the Army had someone die from being beaten for causing a platoon to be punished.

Note to Vereen: Lock your doors when you sleep.

Posted by chrisw2967 on January 22, 2008 at 7:02 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Im just im pressed with Fulmer by getting up by 6AM , I wonder if he ran with them ? Personally I think the coaches should be in as good as shape as the players.
Just beat the kittens in Basketball tonight , its hoops season.

Posted by vol52 on January 22, 2008 at 7:03 p.m. (Suggest removal)

What happened to the pot smokers? Are they going to run laps for that? They have met with Fulmer. Another dozen glazed please!

Posted by thesavageorange on January 22, 2008 at 7:05 p.m. (Suggest removal)

DennisVols .Dang!Now he has to miss the Georgia Southern and Central Michigan game.That will teach that lawbreaker.Ha ha.

Posted by thesavageorange on January 22, 2008 at 7:08 p.m. (Suggest removal)

VolPowers , Don't know if this post is correct, but I hope so. Posted by qwerty6969 on January 22, 2008 at 6:09 p.m. (Suggest removal)

One of the earlier posters questioned if the team's punishment run this morning might have been a walk in the park. Hardly. There were 20 trash cans positioned in the practice complex, most of which were receiving active use as puke receptacles.

It was a serious and intense punishment.

Posted by chrisw2967 on January 22, 2008 at 7:11 p.m. (Suggest removal)

sjt: where do you find a copy of those normal policy and punishment guidelines ?
you work at UT something ? just asking

Posted by qwerty6969 on January 22, 2008 at 7:17 p.m. (Suggest removal)

thesavageorange: Yes, it is correct. I am as good a source as there can be. The running was indoors. It was 110 yard dashes. I lost count of how many. During the run, there was constant "verbal reinforcement" from Coach Fulmer about appropriate and inappropriate off-the-field behavior.

Posted by thesavageorange on January 22, 2008 at 7:22 p.m. (Suggest removal)

qwerty6969 ,Thanks.I take it you witnessed this personally.Were any of the players leering at Vereen?Coach may have gotten this guy the old soap in a sock.Did CPF adress that w/ the players?

Posted by justisiscumin on January 22, 2008 at 7:23 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Good job coach....this sort of punishment will make the team hold the individuals accountable!

Posted by thesavageorange on January 22, 2008 at 7:24 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I meant about not taking out physical punishment on Vereen themselves.

Posted by vol1994 on January 22, 2008 at 7:26 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I don't see how anyone can argue with the punishment. The player was wrong for what he did and we don't know the entire story. From what i was told, and of course this could be incorrect,
Vereen was provoked by a couple of guys and then was jumped by the same guys outside of Gibbs. Again that could be incorrect just what I heard from a client who works at VASF.

However, giving the young man a curfew is probably going to teach this kid a lesson. He's going to be hating life when all of his friends are out late on the weekends and he has to be home by midnight!!

Posted by qwerty6969 on January 22, 2008 at 7:32 p.m. (Suggest removal)

thesavageorange: there were, as you would predict, all sorts of conversations occurring this morning. These conversations covered a variety of subjects, many of which were uncomfortable for at least one of the participants. It is obvious that everyone involved this morning is a part of a team. It was equally obvious no one enjoyed being there, nor does anyone want to cause repeats of this morning.

Posted by ggriggs939 on January 22, 2008 at 7:35 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Follow the example of The Bull, Phillip. One of his players was late for a meeting. He was cautioned that if he was late again, he would have to run laps around the field. He was late for the next meeting and was awarded 10 laps. Late the next time and got 20 more. The player said that when the number got to 160, he realized the General was serious and was always on time, but he still had to run the 160 laps.
Who gave the underage guy the booze? Surely he couldn't have bought it himself. Maybe the reporter gave it to him so he would have a story to report afterward, something like the fireman setting fires so he could ride the fire truck.

Posted by tigervol9802 on January 22, 2008 at 7:37 p.m. (Suggest removal)

stj18 -

Pretty soon the players will have to start running at 6 am 3 days a week anyway (I think). They may already be doing it and this is in addition to it.

Sounds like qwerty is our man on the scene. How many guys threw up?

Posted by thesavageorange on January 22, 2008 at 7:38 p.m. (Suggest removal)

vol1994 ,Even w/o the fight he was still drinking(under age)out at 3:00am,and ignoring a direct order of a police officer.If he wasn't there at 3:00am,and drinking he would not have been in a fight.Nothing good happens at 3:00am when alcohol is involved.Well, almost nothing!

Posted by ReallyAVolFan on January 22, 2008 at 7:39 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Please, Coach Fulmer, do not let any of these guys ever host another recruit. I know you have to assume that a tiger can/will change his spots, and that's fine, but let's not risk UT's recruiting and the image of the UT Football program on these guys!!! You know, there are still a lot of parents out there that do not think there four or five star athlete is capable of smoking pot!!! You have got to do your best to keep the UT Football pot smoking crowd away from the recruits.

Posted by thesavageorange on January 22, 2008 at 7:40 p.m. (Suggest removal)

vol1994 ,Totally sorry.I misread argue for agree in your post.

Posted by pupvol on January 22, 2008 at 7:46 p.m. (Suggest removal)

running don"t bother these players.they already run from the law.

Posted by vol1994 on January 22, 2008 at 7:48 p.m. (Suggest removal)

no problem thesavageorange.

I just hope this is the last of the off field issues, but something tells me we are just getting started. Boy I hope i am wrong but .......

Posted by KingsportVol on January 22, 2008 at 7:51 p.m. (Suggest removal)

From our history we will be the most conditioned team in the SEC next year.Good job CF.Maybe these guy's will get tired of all the early morning runs and start giving the problem players some blanket parties.Go Big Orange!!!

Posted by KingsportVol on January 22, 2008 at 7:53 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Can you see CF ordering a Code Red?

Posted by VOLinDAWGland on January 22, 2008 at 7:59 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I think we're going to be OK this off season...many times good can come from bad and this might have been a spark that lit a fire in Fulmer to step up and head off potential future issues and motivate some team leaders to step up and start asserting themselves. The whole OC search process seemed to really energize him...I think he's back in the game for a final stretch run hopefully leading to another championship.

Posted by vol1994 on January 22, 2008 at 8:03 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I hope you are right volindawgland.
I want to win more than anyone but not the expense of humiliating our program. It seems UT always has off the field issues but then again, I guess most of the universities do, including the one down the street from me, vanderbilt.

Posted by dave1 on January 22, 2008 at 8:09 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Ok TJ, help me keep this straight. We have pounded the fritter, we have smoked the fritter, then we drank the fritter, and we finished up by running until we puked the fritter?

Seriously, good call by CPF. Peer pressure causes these problems and it can sure it too.

Posted by dave1 on January 22, 2008 at 8:10 p.m. (Suggest removal)

That should have been "cure"

Posted by volfan51128 on January 22, 2008 at 8:12 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Make um run their butts off. I understand that these guys are college kids and can/will get into trouble however, they need to be accountable for their actions.

Accountable not only to society, they need to be accountable to their team as well. I see it this way; If these guys get kicked off of the team, who will fill in the holes that the leave behind?

Furthermore, I know if I were a college student/athlete, and I had to get up when normally in bed, I would have a thing or two to say to the guy who screwed up.

I'm not saying lynch the guy, nor am i saying let him get off with just a hand slap however, Let's not kill the kids career for a minor mistake.

Good job on the coaches part by making the punishment swift, just, and equal to the crime.

Posted by eVOLution on January 22, 2008 at 8:18 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I think its funny when Lee Smith got a DUI he was kicked off the team probably because he wasn't as talented but these guys get caught with weed and Vareen gets all these drinking charges. I think its funny.

Posted by VolsorCat on January 22, 2008 at 8:24 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I think someone hurt VolCR's feelings and he left us! As someone who has experienced the team punishment before, I can tell you it works. Running until someone pukes makes a lifelong impression. Thank God someone stepped up after about 15 ladders.

Posted by thesavageorange on January 22, 2008 at 8:25 p.m. (Suggest removal)

eVOLution, Lee Smith was a different case entirely.The 18-year-old Powell High School tight end is the focus of a Knox County Schools investigation into grade tampering and an inappropriate relationship with an assistant female principal.
He was already in hot water.He would have lead us down the death penalty path.Or as I like to call them "The Alabama Laws".

Posted by utwick on January 22, 2008 at 8:25 p.m. (Suggest removal)

In order to help his team focus on their bowl game, Mack Brown at Texas made the entire team do extra "work" each time a player made a mistake in practice. If you saw the bowl game, you may have noticed the difference in the team's focus from the loss to A & M at the end of regular season. They kicked butt. The same approach of making the entire team responsible could be a good disciplinary approach for the Vols.

Posted by vol4jesus on January 22, 2008 at 8:28 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Lee already had some other issues on the table preceding his poor parking job on campus. Grades for favors rumor...He pushed the envelope some. Had the new policy been in place yet on four strikes? Again more there than meets the eye for us to see or know.

Posted by 02champs on January 22, 2008 at 8:29 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Perfect discipline...ty, Coach..!!!

Posted by Volalumnus on January 22, 2008 at 8:29 p.m. (Suggest removal)

This actually a good thing for Fulmer to do.
"Alright if a few are going to make the whole team look bad, then the whole team can be punished"

This sends a message that some of the so called leader on the team need to step up. Or be punished too. After all they are the ones seeing it all happen.

Posted by pdhuff on January 22, 2008 at 8:30 p.m. (Suggest removal)

dave1 8:09 - puking a fritter would never be an option. They cost $1.29 each and with a glass of chocokate milk = ecstasy. Ralph's in Cookeville is fritter nirvana -50 years experience.

Posted by 02champs on January 22, 2008 at 8:31 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Like I said...ty, Coach..!!

Posted by TommyJack on January 22, 2008 at 8:33 p.m. (Suggest removal)

dave1: Only one thing left. I don't want to go there.

Posted by jobrando on January 22, 2008 at 8:37 p.m. (Suggest removal)

A new basketball school is rising...Beat the Cats

Posted by TommyJack on January 22, 2008 at 8:38 p.m. (Suggest removal)

PD: Next time I'm thru there, will stop at Ralph's. What is the fritter of choice? Apple?

Posted by VolCR on January 22, 2008 at 8:43 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Too bad they do these type of runs in order to get in shape for Spring practice. Sure, they hadn't probably started yet but they come complete with puke stations. I am glad that Vereen gets singled out after other members of the team had incidents previous to this. Fulmer is really laying down the law.

Let's see Vereen also hosted EJ Abrams Ward over the weekend and Demonte Bolden hosted Willie Bohanon. Probably not the best 2 (Vereen-well that was obvious and Bolden who was academically ineligible). I'm sure their parents or guardians haven't heard about this.

I also like the new found mancrush that volfanindawgland has on me. I'm sure it's just an infatuation period, hopefully you'll grow out of it and grow a pair.

Posted by daddyaxe on January 22, 2008 at 8:46 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Hey coach. Ever heard of dismissed. The only way that you are ever going to get it in the heads. You need to lay the law down on these thugs.

Posted by Tenn_Dawg on January 22, 2008 at 8:48 p.m. (Suggest removal)

DennisVol and Orangesavage are you suggesting that Fulmer's disciplinary actions that he levied tonight is more stringent than a two game suspension handed down by Richt? Having to run gassers versus taking away playing time is like punishing your teenager by taking away his UNO cards and letting him keep the PS3.

Posted by nafslov on January 22, 2008 at 8:48 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Let's boycott ESPN football and WATE for their attacks on our team,coaches, and players! Go Vols ! Go to H___, WATE !

Posted by Titan on January 22, 2008 at 8:51 p.m. (Suggest removal)

From a TTU grad - class of '79, it don't get any better than Ralphs. Ask anyone in town for directions, it's an icon.

Posted by pdhuff on January 22, 2008 at 8:53 p.m. (Suggest removal)

TJ- Apple it is- 59 S. Cedar 526-4231. Get the ones off the 2nd shelf, they're great - weigh about 3/4 lb each- somewhere north of 2300 calories. Valhalla.

Posted by TommyJack on January 22, 2008 at 8:54 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Titan: will do, thnx

Posted by jevolball7 on January 22, 2008 at 9:01 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Is there not a b-ball game on in 5 min.? Lets talk about that! We will have a hard time keeping BP, when it's obvious the people would rather talk off season garbage than hoops. Come on KNS and E.TN, lets get our seasons in line! GO VOLS!

Posted by dallasdog1 on January 22, 2008 at 9:09 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Tenn Dogg,

Maybe not so....long time till next fall....gassers are immediate reinforcement that action has a consequence.....but I do agree that whatever richt did is great and whatever fulmer did sux. CMR is awesome.....he is the man.

Posted by dallasdog1 on January 22, 2008 at 9:12 p.m. (Suggest removal)

That Mark Richt sure is the man...................every action he takes is touched by God himself. He sure is perfect. I want to be him....I love him...he is perfect. He is better than fulmer.....and since fulmer has beaten him 3 out of 4 I will use his perfect discipline to show that he is better than fulmer. Richt is thin as welll.....he a good looking man.

Posted by utwick on January 22, 2008 at 9:17 p.m. (Suggest removal)

tenn-dawg

I would say that Fulmer's discipline is a lot more stringent than a 2 game suspension for 1 player and a 1 game supsension for the other. Do these guys start or contribute significant playing time? If not, then they will not be missed and the punishment will be basically punishment in name only. Vereen also got community service, riding with the police, and having to abide by a curfew for a semester. Since Vereen redshirted last year, who knows if a supsension would have achieved anything.

Posted by DennisVols on January 22, 2008 at 9:20 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Tenn Dogg
He got the 2nd game suspension today following a less than steller response to the original 1 game suspension. That two bad decisions not just one.
GA has had more players in toruble for drinking over the last 3 seasons than any other team. Richt had said he had this problem under control but I guess with this latest incident that is not ture is it?

Posted by Tenn_Dawg on January 22, 2008 at 9:40 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Look I never said Richt was perfect or even close to it. I only know of one that was perfect and he did not follow football. Not bashing Fulmer's discipline either there are plenty of Vol posters on here that do it already. I was just responding to a comment that seemed to suggest that 2 games is no big deal. It is also pretty standard under Richt that those guys usually run and perform community service in addition to the suspensions. I do like the fact that PF made the whole team do it though. There is no question that there is a problem with alcohol in Athens and it is not just the athletes either but most campuses I have been to have the same issues although not to the extent as Athens. I will reserve jugdement on if this problem is under control over the entire course of the offseason. If this incident is all the happens I would say that the problem is relatively under control. As much to be expected for monitering 100+ young men.

Posted by utmdm on January 22, 2008 at 9:56 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Many a midnight run to Ralph's when living in the dorms at Tech. Ralph's and pizza were college survival food.

Posted by utmdm on January 22, 2008 at 10 p.m. (Suggest removal)

pd, remember Johnnys pizza?

Boommm, Lofton exclamation at the half.

Posted by agentorange on January 22, 2008 at 10:32 p.m. (Suggest removal)

as long as gay dipspits like volcr post on here, i will continue to keep my comments on a 5th grade level. quit acting so idiot and gay in public people. college is precisley the time you smoke weed, drink beer, get in fights and all that good stuff so you don't do it when you have a real job.

Posted by agentorange on January 22, 2008 at 10:47 p.m. (Suggest removal)

wow, i just read the rest of volcr's posts. i didn't know they had a computer in the carousel. i always wondered who those 7ft tall chicks, like crvol, were in vick 'n bills until the cook told me took look for the 'tell' (ie ye ol adam's apple). that wrecked midnight vol burgers for me.

Posted by grvol on January 22, 2008 at 11:25 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Vereen only a sub. Make an example of him Phat Phil! What about the weed smoker while driving with a recruit in the car Gerald Jones? He's a star. Shhhhhhhh!

Posted by grvol on January 22, 2008 at 11:31 p.m. (Suggest removal)

What do you expect Phat Phil to do... dismiss the thugs so all the 4-5 star recruits he has lined up can take their place?

Posted by rootin4volz on January 22, 2008 at 11:37 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I agree with Fulmer's actions here...The only thing I'd suggest he should have done would to have made Vereen stand on the sideline a 6am while WATCHING all of his other teammates run until they puked. Maybe then he'd understand his actions affect the entire team. Same for G-Gun and Paige.

Posted by Couchdummy on January 22, 2008 at 11:44 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Get real! Fulmer did the right thing, and now the team has a vested interest in their teammates toeing the line! I think Fulmer should not be unfairly judged in this case.

Posted by anthony on January 22, 2008 at 11:46 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Good for you, Phil, long time overdue tough discipline. We are all in need of tough discipline. Let's just put ourselves through it, so others won't have to do it for us@@ Like McCain, Hillary, Obumma,,etc etc etc etc etc

Posted by TouchdownTN on January 22, 2008 at 11:53 p.m. (Suggest removal)

chrisw2967: "I think the coaches should be in as good as shape as the players."

You must really love FOOLmer then.

Posted by VolCR on January 22, 2008 at 11:54 p.m. (Suggest removal)

agentorange....college is a time to get in fights? That is true but not for a ankle grabber like you. Wow, you seem to know so much about the Carousel and who hangs out there I doubt you did much fighting. They don't call having dirty knees "fighting" where I come from.

Posted by VolCR on January 23, 2008 at midnight

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Posted by mcbrim1998 on January 23, 2008 at 2:26 a.m. (Suggest removal)

I am just happy that Fulmer got a contract extension.

Go Gators

Posted by pms151 on January 23, 2008 at 2:54 a.m. (Suggest removal)

If anyone is still here this time of night I would like to know how Fulmer can make his team run. Isn't it now a period that no organized practices can take place under NCAA guidelines. I'm not trying to be sarcastic. I just want to know.

Posted by pms151 on January 23, 2008 at 3:22 a.m. (Suggest removal)

well I guess CR has passed out.

Posted by hiresanders on January 23, 2008 at 7:34 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Good to see we have some discipline. Guy breaks two laws (underage drinking, public intox) and only has to run? What a joke. Let me predict, the arrests will continue and keep being an embarrassment until we start kicking these morons out of school.

Posted by hiresanders on January 23, 2008 at 7:34 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Good to see we have some discipline. Guy breaks two laws (underage drinking, public intox) and only has to run? What a joke. Let me predict, the arrests will continue and keep being an embarrassment until we start kicking these morons out of school.

Posted by pdhuff on January 23, 2008 at 7:39 a.m. (Suggest removal)

utmdm-10:00p.m.- mulling about Johnny's Pizza. Remember a small pizza joint near Sparta which we used to quell some Country Club overdoses. Which started always near the old North Row.

Best motel was the now defunct Putnam Co Drive-In. Don't remember many Eagles getting discipline.

Posted by jobrando on January 23, 2008 at 7:45 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Coach Cut is gone and discipline has gone with him....back to Fulmer crap

Posted by gilster23 on January 23, 2008 at 8:13 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Fellows, in college football the team already gets up @ 6 a.m. for winter workouts and mat drills etc. The only thing that was done here was a little extra running was involved.

These kids just need to make better decisions and I for one think some type of curfew should be involved. Nobody should be out @ 3 a.m. on a school night.

Posted by GreerVol22 on January 23, 2008 at 8:14 a.m. (Suggest removal)

make the punishment fit the crime...drop Vereen off on Broadway and make him spend a few nights under the overpass with some "friends"...

seriously, when a couple of linemen corner him in the locker room after the run, and he can't do playstation after midnight, he'll figure it out.

Never forget that your scholarship is a contract...a free ride to education, football glory, and dating some of UT's finest. I dare say you didn't have that where you came from.

Posted by powert on January 23, 2008 at 8:21 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Team punishment for one guys mistake is very effective. I remember coaches using it all the way back to sixth grade.

I do however question how much punishment is derived from riding around in a car eating donuts.

Posted by marc_ash on January 23, 2008 at 8:31 a.m. (Suggest removal)

You know, maybe teams should start taking the military mentality when players mess up repeatedly. Maybe a Blanket Party or a G.I. Party would be appropriate.

Might see some changes if they actually policed their own.

Posted by slovog on January 23, 2008 at 8:32 a.m. (Suggest removal)

At least Fulmer can beat Kentucky.

Posted by marc_ash on January 23, 2008 at 8:33 a.m. (Suggest removal)

"Punishment" in and of itself is useless...it doesn't work. The reinforcement/reward needs to be more appealing than the potential "punishment" that a student might face.

Unfortunately, this is not the case with people that know they will have multiple chances. The result is different when that reinforcer is taken away however (see Morely and Raines).

Posted by bflynn2 on January 23, 2008 at 9:07 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Fulmer should run, God knows he needs it.

Posted by sjt18 on January 23, 2008 at 9:12 a.m. (Suggest removal)

chrisw said: "sjt: where do you find a copy of those normal policy and punishment guidelines ?
you work at UT something ? just asking"

Just an interpretation from the patterns CPF follows when these things come to light... and the standard press releases. What they said about Vereen was pretty much the same as the other three... which was the same as others that have been caught their first time.

I could be wrong but the pattern suggests that at least following 2005 someone handed a minimum guideline for punishing various offenses. It could be a built in protection against CPF's tendency to place "loyalty" and "family" above necessary discipline.

Just an interpretation though... I don't have the memos or SOP's sitting in my lap or anything.

Posted by sjt18 on January 23, 2008 at 9:14 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Also chrisw, if managers of any type go too far off the reservation in this day and age, they invite a lawsuit. If DV's first offense punishment is way out of line with someone else's... and one eventually gets kicked off the team then messy lawsuits could ensue.

Posted by Malcolm_Tent on January 23, 2008 at 9:18 a.m. (Suggest removal)

The punishment should fit the crime. Vereen got run down by a cop, the team runs. I wonder if Jones and Page's punishment should have been having the team up at 6 a.m. changing light bulbs throughout the university and it's buildings.

The military uses this kind of tactic, but ordinarily the rest of your batallion is expected to beat the snot out of you once you get back to the barracks. I'll have to wait and see on this one, but this is a good start Phil (damn it was painful to say that).

Posted by pdhuff on January 23, 2008 at 9:48 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Do you think they denied Vereen his glazed ration?

I knew I should have never gotten into B Ball.

Posted by scttmcdonald on January 23, 2008 at 9:54 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Good Step, Phil. However this comment needs tweaking:

“We have a great group of young men, but the actions of a few taint the image of all of them,” Fulmer said. “These young men need to understand that they represent the University of Tennessee and our football program and these immature actions need to stop.”

it needs to read; "These immature actions will not be tolerated"

In my experience, when dealing with a team, I have learned that dealing with only the weakest link doesnt necessarily provide you with the desired feedback. In order for this group of kids to get it through there heads that this is a cohesive team, every disgression has to be felt by the entire group. To work as one, perform as one and win as one, they have to be disiplined as one. The effectiveness of this results in one team feeling the results of the individual and when this becomes the theme, that individual will have to either bow out or become one with the team.

Teach the pricipals of "TEAM" in the off season, coach. You will see the dividends on the field come Fall 08.

Posted by GoVol on January 23, 2008 at 10:01 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Glad to see Fulmer step in and take charge. I think the 'team' punishment pyschology really does work. Peer pressure is better because the players are with some of their peers almost 24/7. We'll see in time.

Posted by UT_Tim on January 23, 2008 at 10:14 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Structure and discipline is what’s needed. As said before, the military has been doing it for years and from having been there, I can say IT WORKS but only if you run the hell out of them and keep running the hell out of them. Twice around the block and then letting them all go back to sleep isn’t going to get the job done.

Run them coach, run the hell out of them and then run them some more. While they run, make sure you keep telling them why their running.

Posted by scttmcdonald on January 23, 2008 at 10:21 a.m. (Suggest removal)

There are a lot of steps over a Neyland Stadium that are not getting used as of late. I say a section a day then repeat.

Posted by scttmcdonald on January 23, 2008 at 10:26 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Look at how GA Coach Mark Richt handled something similar....

http://www.usatoday.com/sports/college/f...

Albeit, they are only suspended for the GA Southern game.

Posted by LazhilUTDelt on January 23, 2008 at 10:27 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Ladies and Gentlemen, we may have ourselves a Head Coach again.
I hope he keeps this up.
Fulmer is changing his attitude a bit and so far some of them have been very positive changes.

There you go...to TommyJack and all others that say I only bash Fulmer. I praised him.

Posted by sjt18 on January 23, 2008 at 10:28 a.m. (Suggest removal)

One of the better examples of group punishment I witnessed in the military was at Ft Benning. The Drill Sgt didn't identify the culprit but everyone knew who caused it. He ran a hose for a few hours into a sawdust pit then got the whole platoon up at 2:00 AM for extra PT.

Posted by sjt18 on January 23, 2008 at 10:32 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Lazhil... that is the most impressive thing I've ever seen you do.

I don't think this punishment was severe enough but if it had the right psychological impact on the team then it should yield some good mileage.

Posted by wr23 on January 23, 2008 at 10:34 a.m. (Suggest removal)

"Ladies and Gentlemen, we may have ourselves a Head Coach again."....who cares? Seriously, who really cares about football here anymore? Every year the same--mediocrity. Same ol same ol.

UT's a basketball school now! Go Bruce and the B-Ball Vols!!!!!!!!

Posted by b_appleton on January 23, 2008 at 10:50 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Ahhh.... the sweet smell of peer motivation!! The Marine Corps way works every time!! [["Private Pyle has dishonored himself and dishonored the platoon. I have tried to help him. But I have failed. I have failed because YOU have not helped me. YOU people, have not given Private Pyle the proper motivation! So, from now on, whenever Private Pyle (explicative)s up, I will not punish him! I will punish all of YOU! And the way I see it ladies, you owe me for ONE JELLY DOUGHNUT! NOW, GET DOWN ON YOUR FACES! ... Open your mouth! Theyre payin for it! You eat it!!]] Take Pvt. Pyle and replace with Daryl Vereen... take jelly donut and replace with drunken escapades!! LOL! Go Vols!!

Posted by sjt18 on January 23, 2008 at 10:58 a.m. (Suggest removal)

wr23, b-ball will always be an afterthought for me... It will always be that game invented to keep football players in shape.

I respect Pearl. I'm happy that UT b-ball is on the upswing... but don't drink the kool-aid quite yet. They just lost to a vastly inferior UK team and, for all the positive signs, haven't reached the elite level yet.

This is a team with very real holes in it. They have key players that can't shoot FT's. They don't have great rebounders. They appear to struggle against teams that remain disciplined against the trap. They are probably too dependent on 3's.

There are alot of ways to say you are "successful" in college basketball. Don't win your conference? OK, maybe win the tourney. No? Well you can still get an at large bid... and claim success if you make the sweet 16, elite 8, or final 4. You would definitely consider it a success if you finished with a #12 ranking, right?

Posted by TommyJack on January 23, 2008 at 11:13 a.m. (Suggest removal)

sjt18: Pretty much feel as you do on this one. BB, for me, was made to get me thru the doldrums. We DO have an exceptional coach. Our team WAS tired after a scheduling nightmare.
BTW, for those that think the "football posters" were negative...they need to look at the immature posts on the BB threads..Many are even dissing CBP. Unbelievable.

Posted by mtnvol on January 23, 2008 at 11:22 a.m. (Suggest removal)

b_appleton, FULL METAL JACKET! I agree that the upperclassmen who keep their nose clean won't tolerate foolishness from freshmen when those frosh make everyone run @ 6 AM. This is a great way to allow senior leadership to blossom and flourish. ;-)

Posted by wr23 on January 23, 2008 at 11:28 a.m. (Suggest removal)

sjt and TJ--I appreciate your fairness, and, in all fairness to you, I USED to be a bigger UT football fan, but after so long without any real spark, I've put my energy in UT b-ball. And that's simply because I DO see a spark there--I see a coach with vision, a young guy who wants to break free from any "status" UT had in BB.

As far as football goes, I'll still root for UT, but I don't believe the current admin has the potential to put UT's program in the national spotlight. BB, on the other, garners national respect. And for that, you have to give Pearl credit.

Posted by TommyJack on January 23, 2008 at 11:30 a.m. (Suggest removal)

LazzieFrat: This is the ONLY impressive thing I've seen you do.

Posted by wr23 on January 23, 2008 at 11:31 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Oh and one more thing: Yes, what PF did was right, yes, the Vols did well this season, etc. I'm not here to bash CPF or the VOLS. I just think the national spotlight goes to BB--Pearl and Summitt--until UT gets a new spark of life in the football program. And those are just MY thoughts--I know many will disagree....

Posted by sjt18 on January 23, 2008 at 11:36 a.m. (Suggest removal)

I think TJ and I would agree that UT football under CPF is at a crossroads. These last hires will probably determine the terms under which CPF retires- on top in mockery of his critics or in decline with a tarnished legacy.

Posted by TommyJack on January 23, 2008 at 11:39 a.m. (Suggest removal)

wr23 & Sjt: Agree

Posted by DennisVols on January 23, 2008 at 12:40 p.m. (Suggest removal)

"On Wednesday, the team suspended Ramarcus Brown, a junior cornerback who started nine games last year, after he reportedly broke an undisclosed team rule.

Brown is the most recent Georgia football player who will sit out due to off-the-field incidents. At the beginning of fall training camp, Coach Mark Richt reported Ian Smith has ended his football career due to medical reasons. Smith, a redshirt sophomore from Cartersville, was already slated to miss the first five games of the season due to alcohol related arrests. Smith is not the only Bulldog to unexpectedly eave the team this summer.
"
At the beginning of the summer it was found out that starting cornerback Paul Oliver was academically ineligible and would not be able to participate in the 2007"
"Linebacker Akeem Hebron was arrested for the second time this spring for minor in possession of alcohol. Hebron, who already had been suspended for the first two games of the season, was suspended for the entire season in accordance with the University alcohol policy."
While the loss of Oliver and Hebron hurt the defense, the offense faced a setback soon after when backup quarterback Blake Barnes and tight end Tripp Chandler were arrested for open container and other alcohol-related violations. Coach Mark Richt has since announced that both will be suspended from the first game of the season.

"Freshman Caleb King and redshirt freshman NaDerris Ward also were arrested this summer for minor traffic violations, but neither player is expected to miss any playing"
This is from an article in the Red & Black on GA's football team 8/07
And this does not include the 2 players just aressted for underage drinking this past week.
Just one of many teams out there that are battling underage drinking and not doing a good job of it. It is easy to point fingers and blame someone but coming up with a plan to fix it is far more difficult.
Choice & Consequences that these young men make and must face. The Consequences must be made to out weigh the risk involved.

Posted by waleswindsor on January 23, 2008 at 12:41 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Fulmer should finally realize that he needs to quit recruting THUGS. That seems to be all he has recruited over the past 10 or so years. Look at what lot of them have done when they get of of the college FB and head off the the NFL. Continue to be THUGS..

Posted by volunteer_cowboy on January 23, 2008 at 12:53 p.m. (Suggest removal)

this was in the tennessean this morning: Phillip Fulmer came back from a recruiting trip on Tuesday.
This is serious. At this time of the year, Fulmer is up to his neck in recruiting and needs to stay with it — especially when Tennessee is striking out with many top prospects.
But two incidents called for some serious wrist slapping and a little public-relations spin.
The latest problem involves the arrest of freshman Daryl Vereen in the wee hours of Monday morning. Vereen was arrested on suspicion of public intoxication and underage consumption after police observed 10 people fighting outside a campus dorm.
Vereen's punishment? The usual — community service and a semester-long curfew.Beyond that, Fulmer made the entire team run at 6 a.m. Tuesday, attempting to send the message that UT's players need to police themselves."We have a great group of young men, but the actions of a few taint the image of all," Fulmer said.Frankly, this punishment fits the crime. Vereen allegedly is a first-time offender who made a mistake. Raise your hand if you went your first year of college with a clean slate. Anyone?Perception equals reality
Beyond that, though, this smacks of damage control by Fulmer. He's in a critical recruiting period and the last thing he needs is ammunition for coaches to use against him in pursuit of prospects.Perception is reality, especially in recruiting. recruiters use any slip-ups against you. The perception that a program has discipline issues does not sit well with parents of most prospects.
And the problem is compounded by the fact that UT's recruiting is not measuring up to its usual standards this year. With two weeks remaining until national signing date, the Vols lack both quantity and quality among their public verbal commitments.Why? The reasons are many and varied. But one prospect, Randall Cobb, told a reporter for a Kentucky-based Web site that he chose the Wildcats over UT because "Tennessee is dealing with a lot of problems right now with coaching changes and a lot of disciplinary problems."Where there's smoke …In truth, there has been a decrease in off-field incidents involving Vols players since things came to a head a couple of years ago. Since that rash of arrests and citations, Fulmer has cracked down.
But when it rains, it pours. On Jan. 11, Vols freshmen Gerald Jones and Ahmad Paige were cited for misdemeanor marijuana possession.Of particular note was that Jones, Page and another UT freshman, William Brimfield, were hosting Jameel Owens, on his official recruiting visit. Owens was in the car when the blue lights started flashing.The incident effectively eliminated UT from Owens' list. It was going to be difficult to pry him away from Oklahoma anyway, but the marijuana mess settled matters.
Yes, UT's chances to sign the star wide receiver went up in smoke.

David Climer's columns appear on Wednesday, Friday, Sunday and Monday. Reach him at 259-8020 or dclimer@tennessean.com.

Posted by volintexas on January 23, 2008 at 1:21 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Have never been a big Coach Fulmer proponent, but sending the message that the actions of the few impact the entire team was a great idea. It is hard to control these guys, and things will happen again, but I think this was a great reaction by the head coach.

Posted by zipstick2002 on January 23, 2008 at 2:07 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Disgustingly weak! You don't ask a player's teammates to accomplish what the leader is incapable of doing ... instilling a sense of discipline. Not only is mass punishment unlawful; it is antiquated, ineffective, and representative of one not worthy of a leadership position. Yes, Fulmer is a nice fellow, albeit a weak fellow. The punishment should be that outlined in the team's Standard Operating Procedures(SOP). If no SOP exists - I rest my case.

Posted by TommyJack on January 23, 2008 at 2:38 p.m. (Suggest removal)

zipstick: unlawful? please.

Posted by b_appleton on January 23, 2008 at 2:49 p.m. (Suggest removal)

zipstick, you bring up an interesting point. I can see your concern, but I disagree. I refer back to my post earlier, where I cited a few lines from Full Metal Jacket. I know the scene Ive cited may be a little extreme, but I think the exercise of "team motivation/discipline" is something this team may have needed for a while. Making the team run at 6am does a few things - -It actually shows everyone who is in charge - The coach. "I say get up at 6am. I say run. I say when to stop. Any problems with that? If so, we will run some more." (I heard that was the MO for this drill that was shared with players) Past that, it shows everyone that they win as a hurt, cry, win, lose -- do everything - - as a team! I dont support hazing, but this exercise shows that if these men are going to make that run toward being champions, they have to start considering the consequences, and start thinking of their teammates! After this exercise, this allows the seniors to "step up" and take a more active leadership role - leading, mentoring, policing, imparting some wisdom, sharing some maturity. (ie - Listen dude, if I have to run again at 6am - we are going to have a problem!!) An old Indian saying: "With pain, there comes clarity". Im sure there was a lot of clarity being shared at about 6.45am at the practice field, for guilty and innocent alike. Its a little running, gets their attention, they probably needed it anyway to get ready for spring drills. No hard done and they can laugh about it as a team when they get older!!

Posted by thesavageorange on January 23, 2008 at 3:03 p.m. (Suggest removal)

TommyJack / b_appleton ,Have to agree w/ you both on this one. zipstick2002 ,I have to ask.Have you ever tried to supervise 110 or so 18-22 yr olds?Thats about how many players were on UT's roster last yr.No I haven't either,but I can't imagine it would be easy.I'll ask you like I have asked others.What would you suggest he would have done?

Posted by sjt18 on January 23, 2008 at 3:28 p.m. (Suggest removal)

zipstick, as I mentioned in an earlier post, group punishment has been against DoD policy for several years... I've been out for more than 10 so it is longer than that. The Drill Sgt's job though is to turn couch potatoes into soldiers in 7 weeks. They KNOW from experience that group punishment IS effective. It matters not whether it is antiquated or not... It only matters if it works or not.

Judging from the form press releases... I'd say an SOP of some sort does exist.

Incapable? To an extent we are standing on the sidelines criticizing the guy for being unable to herd cats. CPF didn't raise these guys. They bring all of their baggage with them plus being exposed to the typical college temptations... then some of us also want to restrict what he can/can't do.

In the meantime, he's supposed to be bringing in a top 10 recruiting class every year and winning championships.

Yes, I know it is his job and he's paid well to do it... but a little perspective is in order, don't you think?

Posted by sjt18 on January 23, 2008 at 3:34 p.m. (Suggest removal)

savage, I was a XO and CO of an Army training company. I have a little perspective... except basic tng soldiers have no freedom or privacy by design. We controlled everything they did... and still had some that got into trouble.

The problem could only be magnified by the limitations a coach operates under and the backgrounds of many players.

Posted by DennisVols on January 23, 2008 at 3:38 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Team: Defined as a group, pack, group with one goal.
What this player did made the TEAM look bad, not just himself or just the running backs or any one position.
The team should be and was held accountable. When you punish the whole group you teach that old adage "you are only as strong as your weakest link".
Now we can debate until the fall if this was enough, extra running, and will never come up with a consences of 100% agree or disagree.
But I guarentee you that everybody took note that if they mess up it will be addressed by the TEAM and not by one individual.
MY DI put 100 of us in field with 100 degree heat (July Ft Knox) once and made us hold our M-16's straight out. If you lowered your arms you did 50 pushups and then resumed the position. A hour later we finished.One of us had screwed up and we were punished as a TEAM. We all knew from that point that everyone was accountable for everyone's actions. It was the last time any of us screwed up.
I am not suggesting Fulmer go that far but the whole team concept is still true.

Posted by thesavageorange on January 23, 2008 at 3:58 p.m. (Suggest removal)

sjt18 ,Agreed.Another thing is , a coach alot of time,gets limited info on a young man.Why?Simple.They are protected by their coaches.A friend of mine in HS(James Taylor 1992)was a highly recruited TB(including Tenn).He was always into something.They never even made him go to class,yet they passed him anyway.He was never held accountable for anything.Even by local police.Football ruled.He tore an acl his Sr yr.Back then colleges backed off of players ,b/c as you know back then it was a much more serious inj.He ended up at Westrern Ky.Not being the star he once was he flunked out,got heavy into drugs ,and ended up in prison.W/o an arrest record no coach new who he really was.A young man who was breazed through and then reality smacked him in the face.Had he not been injured ,he might have very well ended up at UT.Nor Majors or CPF would have known what they were getting.Sorry I didn't mean to go that long, but these things happen.

Posted by sjt18 on January 23, 2008 at 4:14 p.m. (Suggest removal)

True... I knew guys on my HS team that smoked dope, drank, took speed, and even used steroids.

I knew guys that took speed before every game and most practices. I knew a couple that drank before football.

As far as I know... the coaches never knew. As you suggest, these aren't new problems.

Posted by knoxsingle on January 23, 2008 at 4:18 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I thought this take on recruiting was interesting, for anyone who's wanting more possibilities about why kids choose particular schools:

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2008/wr...

Posted by thesavageorange on January 23, 2008 at 4:56 p.m. (Suggest removal)

knoxsingle ,Interesting.Add another deck to Neyland!!!

Posted by jdcvols on January 23, 2008 at 5:52 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Interesting comments, so let's see...a player gets into trouble and everybody runs. What would happen if a DB in a football gives up a deep pass? Should everybody ru? what about a player who fumbles..should everybody run, blocked kick...etc. If it works in solving the drugs and drinking then could this be the answer to win more games.

Just a thought.

Posted by TommyJack on January 23, 2008 at 6:04 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Ho-hum. Pound the 3/4 lb. fritter. Bring on August.

Posted by DennisVols on January 23, 2008 at 6:14 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Going back to 2000 you will see a lot of off field problems at UT. But following the 2005 season fallout you will see a big drop in off field issues. The fact that there are still problems at every school is the key of a bigger issue than just trying to find a great athlete with charter. This country decided back in the 70's that punishing our kids restricted their ability to express themselves. The temptations are still there from when I went to college but the difference now is this generation has not had to accept responsibility for their actions. You see it in the news everyday, children bringing guns to school, a higher rate of drug and alcohol abuse amoung teenagers. This whole problem is greater than Fulmer, Richt, or any coach. It begins in the home with the parents and if responsibility was not taught there how can you expect a football coach to teach that to them now that they are adults. 18 is an adult, you can vote, be drafted and if charged of a crime it is at the adult level."Ignorance of the law is no excuse"

Posted by sjt18 on January 23, 2008 at 6:14 p.m. (Suggest removal)

RE: knoxsingle's article...

Wouldn't that suggest that CPF defies virtually all of the statistical predictors when he signs a top 10 class? Most of their top recruits last year passed on schools they were more likely to choose according to that modeling.

Posted by sjt18 on January 23, 2008 at 6:26 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Dennis that's true but illegitimacy is epidemic (around 40% total and maybe as high as 70% in the black community according to statistics I've seen)... and correlates directly to problems with the children of those homes- boys especially.

Even two parent homes in communities with a high percentage of single parent homes are working against the odds because of peer influence.

Posted by pdhuff on January 23, 2008 at 7:21 p.m. (Suggest removal)

TJ 6:04, the 3/4 lbers are magnificent. Only surpassed by the thrill of seeing Phil at the forefront of the young lads heading into the last 1/4 mile of the AM 3 mile run. Head back, arms swinging, pounding the tarmac, what a recruiting ploy. Slo-moing it tooooo theme from Chariots of Fire, ah the majesty.........

Any DTs? Any more blunts?

Posted by TommyJack on January 23, 2008 at 7:49 p.m. (Suggest removal)

PD: Ah, the thought. Ole Phil would be in a golf cart, maybe.

Posted by utmdm on January 23, 2008 at 9:39 p.m. (Suggest removal)

UF officials are still investigating coach Urban Meyer over potential recruiting violations

http://www.orlandosentinel.com/sports/or...

Posted by utmdm on January 23, 2008 at 9:46 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Urban Meyer should pay if he broke recruiting rules

http://www.orlandosentinel.com/news/educ...

Posted by DennisVols on January 23, 2008 at 10:02 p.m. (Suggest removal)

If this turns out to be true then a reduction in schol. needs to be the penalty.

Posted by TommyJack on January 23, 2008 at 11:04 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Dennis: The writer must be a Nole. ha ha Hope it's true.

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