Chaney's pleased

Watching quarterbacks Jonathan Crompton and Nick Stephens direct three touchdown drives each in Saturday's full-scale scrimmage encouraged Tennessee offensive coordinator Jim Chaney but it didn't satisfy him.

"Sometimes you watch that tape and realize that maybe it wasn't what you did; maybe a younger player mis-aligned on their (defensive) side and all of a sudden it looks like you've done something special," he said moments after the workout's conclusion. "I'm a little hesitant to say how great we are right now. Let's not go there."

Still, the first-year coordinator was pleased to see the passing game click and the ground game produce on a fairly consistent basis.

"I think the guys played pretty hard for us," Chaney said. "Coach (Lane) Kiffin put a lot of simple plays out there for the younger kids to see if they could execute."

Two older players who executed exceptionally well were Crompton and Stephens. Crompton completed 10 of 13 passes for 164 yards. Stephens was 8 of 12 for 93 yards. Chaney seemed especially happy with Crompton's work.

"I thought he made some good reads out there, threw the ball pretty accurately for the most part," the coordinator said. "I'm sure there will be things as coaches we'll pick apart."

Although Tennessee's offensive line opened several nice holes for backs Tauren Poole (8 carries for 141 yards), David Oku (9 for 38), Bryce Brown (10 for 37) and Montario Hardesty (5 for 14), Chaney wants the blockers to step up their tenacity a bit.

"I thought early in the thing we weren't playing as physical as we needed to," he said. "I still believe it's a work in progress. I think, execution-wise, they know where they're going.... We need to continue to improve the tone at which we play - more aggressive and more violent in the offensive line."

Tennessee's first-team offensive line on Saturday consisted of Josh McNeil at center, Jacques McClendon and Vladimir Richard at the guards, Chris Scott and Jarrod Shaw at the tackles. That's the same group that finished spring practice atop the depth chart but Chaney says no job is safe.

"I think we can continue to improve individually," the coordinator said. "We've got to keep pushing those guys from a competitive standpoint to be better football players individually, and we'll collectively be better. But there's still a lot of competition ... a lot of camp left."

With one week of work behind them, the Vols' offensive players appear to be on the right track. Chaney likes what he has seen from them mentally, even more so than physically.

"I like our team's attitude," he said. "They're coming out and working their hind-ends off for us. If they continue to do that we'll continue to improve."

Crompton directed a five-play, 70-yard touchdown drive to open the scrimmage, then Stephens put together a 13-play, 69-yard march that ended at the 1-foot line. The fast start encouraged Kiffin but didn't surprise him.

"That's our expectation on every drive to move the ball like that," the head man said. "That was not surprising at all and when we don't do it, it's disappointing.

"I thought the first two series were exactly what we needed. We moved the ball in not very many plays - big chunks with guys doing things right."

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