Jalen Reeves-Maybin, Chance Hall expected to play against Florida

The Vols suffered a lot of injuries in the Ohio game, but two key players should be able to return

KNOXVILLE - Tennessee Volunteers football coach Butch Jones confirmed sophomore right tackle Chance Hall and senior linebacker Jalen Reeves-Maybin will play Saturday against Florida.

Hall had arthroscopic knee surgery in August, and started the last seven games of last season.

Reeves-Maybin injured his shoulder in the second quarter of the 28-19 victory over Ohio. The senior linebacker led Tennessee in tackles the past two seasons.

Senior cornerback Cameron Sutton suffered a fractured ankle against Ohio, and will be out for an extended time.

Sophomore linebacker Darrin Kirkland Jr. and redshirt senior defensive lineman LaTroy Lewis are also not listed on Tennessee’s depth chart against Florida. Kirkland and Lewis missed the Ohio game with ankle injuries, and both players are starters.

Lewis did wear a green, non-contact jersey during Wednesday’s practice.

Junior Colton Jumper is listed the starting middle linebacker against Florida.

Redshirt junior wide receiver Josh Smith and junior defensive back Justin Martin are expected to play Saturday after missing the Ohio game with ankle injuries.

Redshirt freshman linebacker Quart’e Sapp’s season is over due to an ACL injury.

Florida redshirt sophomore starting quarterback Luke Del Rio will miss Saturday’s game after injuring his left knee in a 32-0 victory against North Texas.

No. 14 Tennessee (3-0) enter Saturday’s game against No. 19 Florida (3-0, 1-0 SEC) on a nine-game winning streak dating back to last season.

"You don't win nine straight by not having confidence," Jones said on Wednesday.

Florida has won three games in a row.

Jones said it was great for the fans and recruiting to play on a national stage with an expected sellout crowd at Neyland Stadium on Saturday, and with ESPN’s College GameDay coming to Knoxville.

“I think it’s a level of respect amongst the country that I think everyone realizes, I’ve spoken with more national media this week than I have in a long time,” Jones said. “They (the national media) understand how far this program has come in 3.5 short years.”

However, Jones said the off-the-field festivities will not help his team play winning football. Jones said building a football program includes strong academics and reputable off-the-field behavior.

The Vols last defeated the Gators on Sept. 18, 2004.

Tennessee and Florida play at 3:30 p.m. ET Saturday, and CBS will broadcast the game.

Editor’s Note: The AP Top 25 Poll was used for the rankings in this story.

(© 2016 WBIR)


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