The more, the merrier

The more, the merrier

Two heads really are better than one ... especially if they come complete with strong passing arms.

That's why Tennessee fans have reason to celebrate. The Tuesday commitment of Josh Nunes (Upland, Calif.), combined with last week's commitment of Bryce Petty (Midlothian, Texas), gives the Vols a pair of intriguing quarterback prospects for their 2009 signing class. Historically, when UT signs two QBs in a single class, one transfers but the other thrives.

Nunes, a 6-4, 205-pounder rated the No. 17 QB prospect in America by Scout.com, completed 124 of 216 passes (57.4 percent) for 2,105 yards and 14 touchdowns as a junior with just five interceptions.

Petty, a 6-3, 215-pounder rated No. 29 by Scout.com, completed 164 of 279 (58.8 percent) for 2,042 yards and 16 touchdowns as a junior with just eight interceptions.

Assuming both keep their pledges and sign with UT, Nunes and Petty inevitably will be compared throughout their Vol careers. That has been the case every time Tennessee brought in multiple QBs in one signing class. It's worth nothing, though, that every time the Vols have signed multiple QBs during the Phillip Fulmer era one of the two wound up becoming a quality starter.

Consider:

After signing just one quarterback (Texan Mike Grein) in 1993, his first year as Tennessee's head coach, Fulmer doubled his odds of getting a keeper in '94 by reeling in both Peyton Manning and Branndon Stewart. Manning won the job, Stewart transferred and Manning wound up starting for 3½ seasons.

Fulmer hit the QB daily double again in 2000, signing Casey Clausen and John Rattay. Clausen won the battle, Rattay transferred and Clausen wound up starting for 3½ seasons.

Fulmer was at it again in 2004, signing Erik Ainge and Brent Schaeffer. Guess what happened? Ainge won the battle, Schaeffer transferred and Ainge wound up starting for 3½ seasons.

So, if historical precedent prevails, either Nunes or Petty will transfer but the other will enjoy a distinguished career as UT's starting quarterback.

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