KNOXVILLE, Tenn. -- The offense had its day as the White team took a 44-29 win over the Orange team in the 2017 DISH Orange and White Game at Neyland Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
The game was shortened to one half due to inclement weather.
“We had 35,000 people despite the weather conditions,” coach Butch Jones said.
“We had families waiting in line since 5:30 this morning for the autograph sessions. I’d like to say thank you to them.
“This team has taken major steps [this spring], but we still have a lot of work to do. It starts with getting back to the weight room and getting bigger and stronger and continuing to build team chemistry. We held 20 players out today. Some were precautionary reasons. Some were post-surgical reasons.”
Junior quarterback Quinten Dormady went 10-for-10 for 120 yards and two touchdowns. Redshirt freshman Jarrett Guarantano finished 4-for-5 for 41 yards. Redshirt sophomore Sheriron Jones was 1-for-4 for two yards.
Dormady is the only quarterback with substantial game experience and he was asked about that being an advantage after the game.
“As coach Jones says, every rep is valuable, so I'm not going to say it hurts. Playing in games and getting to play in front of that many people, I'd definitely say it's an advantage. The goal is to go out and complete every ball and for the team to score points. I think as a team we did a good job and we executed very well. I couldn't be happier."
Senior tight end Ethan Wolf had three receptions for 28 yards. Junior receiver Jauan Jennings had three catches for 23 yards and one touchdown.
Eleven different receivers caught passes on the day for 163 total yards. Guarantano hit redshirt freshman Latrell Williams for a 23-yard completion in the first quarter for the longest completion of the day.
"(There are) a lot of young guys out there. So Jauan and Josh Smith, although he’s hurt he is still out there helping, so we do have older guys and receivers in other positions, but the older guys are always pushing us.” Callaway said. “So even though we are young, we think young doesn’t mean anything. We go out there and show them that we can do it, and that we can play with anybody in the SEC."
Sophomore Carlin Fils-aime rushed seven times for 32 yards (4.6-yard average) and sophomore Taeler Dowdy had eight carries for 22 yards.
On the defensive side, Landon Knoll led the Orange team with five tackles. The redshirt sophomore linebacker had five tackles (two solo). Redshirt sophomore defensive lineman Darrell Taylor sacked Guarantano twice for eight yards.
Tennessee recognized 11 Vols during the awards ceremony and also honored former Vol defensive end. The Vols presented Barnett with his spring jersey as well as framed photos commemorating his Tennessee all-time sack record. Barnett broke Reggie White's all-time UT record when he posted the 33rd sack of his career against Nebraska in the 2016 Franklin American Mortgage Music City Bowl on Dec. 30.
The White team jumped out to 2-1 lead in the Circle of Life drills. After sophomore defensive back Nigel Warrior got the best of sophomore receiver Marquez Callaway in the second one-on-one test of strength and leverage for the defense's first point, redshirt sophomore Eli Wolf defeated freshman Deandre Johnson and senior tight end Jakob Johnson defeated redshirt sophomore linebacker Austin Smith.
Dormady led the White team on a 10-play, 70-yard drive, going 5-for-5 for 51 yards and capped the series with a one-yard touchdown pass to Jennings on the left side of the end zone. The White led 20-3 at the end of the opening drive.
In the second quarter, Dormady threw a 19-yard touchdown pass to Eli Wolf that extended the White's lead to 42-21 after an extra point.
In the quarterback competition, each quarterback targeted a series of stationary and moving targets that covered three-quarters of the field. All five quarterbacks then attempted the "Dobbs Hail Mary," throwing the ball from midfield to a cutout of Jennings in the front left corner of the end zone.
Freshman Will McBride had a strong showing scoring nine points in the drill, but Dormady earned the win with 10 points.
(Contact Larry Fleming at email@example.com and on Twitter @larryfleming44)