Practice #19, Aug. 22, 2011

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The Tigers are only three days from the official end of training camp and Coach Larry Porter was looking for a bit more intensity than he got today as the staff begins to focus on the opponent - Mississippi State.

"I thought today's practice was good, but it could have been better from an intensity standpoint," said Porter. "I thought we started a little flat, and it's days like this when you need your leadership to step up and propel us to greater heights. Although it was good, it could have been better."

Coach Porter spoke about starting to prepare for the season opener with Mississippi State that is now just 10 days out. He said he liked today's practice from the standpoint of having a mental edge as they start working on the game plan.

"At the end of the day, it is about the process of preparation and that is what phase we are in," explained Porter. "It's all about preparing to play this game. It's a process every single day. We are throwing situations at them. It's too far out to start having emotions right now about this game. It's great to be fired up about practice, but as we prepare for Mississippi State, we need to be totally focused on the task at hand."

Coach Porter again addressed the quarterback situation, saying that true freshman Taylor Reed continues to play stronger and stronger. He is in an intense battle with junior college transfer Andy Summerlin and fifth-year senior Skylar Jones, who transferred in this fall from Wake Forest.

Coach Porter has continued to see good things out of Reed, though he is not surprised being that he is from a family of football coaches and his "football IQ" is very high. Porter has also made references to Reed staying in his playbook constantly striving to get better.

"Just to see the growth of that young man, and where he was; where he is now; and where he is headed, is good," said Porter. "For me, it's like being a proud poppa. It's always good to see your quarterbacks doing well. He (Reed) had a good day today, especially at the end of practice, which is why it is so fresh on my mind."

Also notable today was that running back Jerrell Rhodes, who had missed a couple of practices and last weekend's scrimmage with an injury, was back out on the field today.

It's time to get those tickets and fill the Liberty Bowl when the Tigers host the Bulldogs on Thursday night, Sept. 1. That game will be carried on SportsSouth with a kick time of 7 p.m. The student body is being challenged to set a record with more than 5,000 students attending the game. The first 10,000 fans will receive pom pons, schedule cards and posters. There will also be a post-game fireworks show to stick around for. Come on Tiger Nation ... Join the Revolution! Wear your Tiger blue and come support your hometown team. Tickets are available online at, or by calling (901) 678-2331.

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