Lucas Richman, musical director of the Knoxville Symphony
Orchestra, may be the finest conductor in Tennessee, but he's not
the most well-known. That distinction belongs to Vols senior
quarterback Casey Clausen, who led the school band in a rendition
of Rocky Top after a 24-10 win at Florida last Saturday.
The Gators had vowed not to let Clausen repeat his performance of
2001, when he celebrated Tennessee's win at the Swamp by leading
the band. But Florida couldn't stop Clausen from orchestrating
another victory, this time by throwing for 235 yards and a
touchdown. One of the scores was a 48-yard Hail Mary to James
Banks just before halftime that gave Tennessee a 7-3 lead and
swung the momentum.
The victory will no doubt do wonders for Clausen's popularity
among Tennessee fans, many of whom have been critical of him,
particularly last year, when the Vols' disappointing 8-5 season
ended with a 30-3 loss to Maryland in the Peach Bowl. Even after
victories--Clausen is now 11-1 as a starter on opponents' home
fields--his performances have sometimes been harshly critiqued by
sports-radio callers. Tennessee coach Phillip Fulmer says that
the public wasn't aware of the extent to which Clausen was
hampered by shoulder and ankle injuries last year, but the only
defense Clausen needs is more performances like Saturday's.
THEIR TIME IS NEAR
More teams are getting snaps for their young backup quarterbacks
this season. In fact, some of these understudies appear to be
ready to start.
--Chris Leak, Florida A true freshman and the Gators' QB of the
future, Leak will unseat Ingle Martin by season's end.
--Brady Quinn, Notre Dame While senior starter Carlyle Holiday
struggles, Quinn, another true freshman, continues to impress
with his passing.
--Aaron Rodgers, Cal The strong-armed sophomore led the Bears to a
31-24 win over Illinois, throwing for 263 yards in his first
--Vince Young, Texas A terrific runner and passer, Young, a
redshirt freshman, will continue to push struggling junior Chance
26 Consecutive quarters in which BYU has not scored a rushing
touchdown, dating back to last season. The Cougars scored twice
through the air in an 18-14 loss to Stanford last Saturday.
163 Passes Wyoming senior quarterback Casey Bramlet has thrown
this season without an interception. Bramlet threw 51 times for
379 yards and two touchdowns in a 35-29 loss to Air Force last
512 Yards allowed, per game, by 0-3 Mississippi State's defense.
The Bulldogs play No. 7 LSU this Saturday.
In an attempt to prepare his team to play at Iowa's Kinnick
Stadium, where the walls of the visitors' locker room are painted
pink, Arizona State coach Dirk Koetter had the walls of the Sun
Devils' locker room covered in pink tissue all week. It didn't
help, as the Hawkeyes won 21-2.... Texas Tech quarterback B.J.
Symons threw for 586 yards and two touchdowns in a 49-21 loss to
N.C. State, but Wolfpack coach Chuck Amato wasn't impressed. "I
don't care if they had a thousand yards," he said. "We had a
heckuva lot more points than they did." ... How bad are things at
Arizona? The Wildcats have lost to LSU, Oregon and Purdue by a
combined score of 166-30. Up next are No. 19 TCU and No. 21