Coming off a 2012 season in which he didn't play a single game completely healthy, Curt Maggitt has been surgically repaired. The junior linebacker at Tennessee says when he's not eating, sleeping or studying, he's rehabilitating so he can reach his top goal — returning to 100-percent.
"I don't feel like no player plays a complete season being 100-percent," Maggitt said on the eve of the Vols' first training camp under coach Butch Jones. "It's just pushing through it and some things you can deal with, some things you can't."
Coming off like an antsy shark in an entirely too small tank, the soon-to-be three-year starter is locked and loaded mentally to get the Vols' season off on the right foot.
"I'm feeling good, I'm feeling better, every day I'm feeling better, just ready to go out there with the team in training camp and ready to get after it," the former four-star prospect said.
The West Palm Beach, Fla., native was labeled a starter only hours after his first practices in Knoxville. In two seasons, he has 86 tackles with 10.5 TFLs and 2.5 sacks.
Curt Maggitt video
Jason Croom is every bit of 6-feet-5, 225 pounds. And, that's not a tub of goo.
After working his way back from a shoulder injury that slowed his first season on campus, the Norcross, Ga., native is poised for a productive 2013. Even at a program that stays loaded with wide receiver talent, Croom sticks out with his stature and big-play capability.
Another stretch of having to sport a yellow, no-contact jersey struck Croom in the spring, hampering assistant coach Zach Azzanni's ability to get the most out of limited time with his wideout. However, it's all systems go for the former four-star on Friday. Look for him to be a favored target no matter the quarterback this season.
Jason Croom video
Nathan Peterman hasn't thrown a pass, hasn't taken a snap. For all 12 games of his college career, he's signaled in plays, held a clipboard and donned a headset.
Yet, here is as a redshirt freshman listed as a co-starter heading into training camp. The right-hander is in a tight competition with junior Justin Worley, who does have starter's experience.
"I don't think it's a huge deal. I think you have to be prepared either way if you're the starter or the back-up," Peterman said Thursday.
Engulfing himself in coordinator Mike Bajakian's playbook and fine-tuning his arm action to become more accurate with delivering the football are the high points of where Peterman sought improvement.
Nathan Peterman video