Jones teaching players to tune out

Jones teaching players to tune out

Posted: Thursday, April 11, 2013 7:00 pm

KNOXVILLE — Crying babies, police sirens, car alarms. How do you deal when you hear them? Butch Jones is trying find out the Vols will deal with distractions.
“It is being able to focus and ex-out everything,” Jones said of incorporating the annoying sounds. “Playing in the SEC and having to play at Oregon, some people describe it as the loudest venue in all of college football. You have to learn how to sort those distractions out. You have to focus on your communicative skills, your nonverbal communicative skills, and your command presence. We will continue to grow as spring ball progresses in using that.”
Jones is known for thinking of everything that could come up in the heat of the moment in a game. So bringing the sounds of cracking glass and bells is nothing new to his staff. But for the players, it was a surprise — a welcome one.
“The first thing I thought of was if this is how it’s going to be in the game, we’re not going to be able to hear each other,” said redshirt freshman receiver Jason Croom. “(Jones) tries to surprise us with everything, so right away I just started looking to the sideline and I knew he was trying to make us focus on communicating today.”
Jones waited until the 10th practice to debut one of his trademarks.
“I wanted to make sure we had the foundation and the bases,” said Jones. “Obviously. it will be a staple in training camp. But I also like to do it when they are not expecting it. It is practice 10, that is why we did a live two-point play segment.
“Our defense has to understand, in order to play great defense the mental effort, the mental intensity, the energy that it takes, you have to bring it every practice, every day you have to live that way. Just like toughness, you have to live it every day.
“You don’t learn how to swim without getting in the pool. It is that mental intensity, it really is. Our defense didn’t have the same effort, the same energy they had on Saturday. It showed in our last team period, they got beat 18-4. You can’t have that be a great defense. You play great defense by playing with a high level of consistency in everything that you do.”

Published in The Messenger 4.11.13

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