Anytime players get an opportunity to start, they must make the most of it.
Safety Prentiss Waggner did just that Saturday night in the Vols season opener against UT Martin.
Waggner ended up with four solo tackles, two assisted tackles and one big interception return for a touchdown for 54 yards.
Not a bad night for his season opener as the starter for the Vols.
"I think I did pretty well," Waggner said Monday after practice. "I very productive on the football field, I had a few mistakes, hope to do better next week."
Each player is graded by his position coach on missed assignments, effort and on the field production. Waggner was all smiles when asked how he graded out.
"I graded out 89-90 percent, I had a couple of mental errors and a couple of misalignments," Waggner said.
He was asked if he got extra points for a big touchdown.
"You get a couple credit points for the touchdown, that boosted up my GPA a little," he said.
Was Waggner nervous about making the start Saturday night?
"No, I wasn't really nervous at all," Waggner explained. "I have been waiting for quite a while, looking to make big plays and I happen to get a big break."
With Martin trailing big early in the third quarter, Waggner knew his time was coming.
"With them trailing big time, I knew I could just sit on the route and jump the route," Waggner said. "I felt like I would get an opportunity."
Waggner is putting the first game behind him and workng hard to get ready for the challenge that Oregon will present this upcoming Saturday.
"Oregon has a lot of playmakers, they put up a lot of points," Waggner said. "They are very talented, it will be a big, big challenge for us, we've got to work hard and get ready for a big game."
Waggner had one thing on his mind when the interception came.
"What was going through my head was get into the end zone and not let anyone catch me," Waggner said. "I would have never heard the end of it if I hadn't scored."