Tennessee had plenty of motivation prior to its scrimmage Wednesday night, as five-time NFL MVP and Volunteers legend Peyton Manning stopped by the locker room to deliver a pregame speech to this year's squad.
"A lot of people have already made their assumptions, 'Hey this is what they are going to do,' but only you guys know what this team is going to be about," Manning said. "Block out all the noise, stay in house together.
"The best teams were guys that stayed together, they didn't blame each other, we didn't call press conferences, we didn't say, 'I did my part, he didn't do his job.' We stuck together and that's how you win."
Manning also gave a nod to Tennessee head coach Butch Jones, assuring the players that both he and their bench boss will be providing constant support.
"Coach (Butch) Jones, I promise you, has your backs, and you need to have his back, and you stick together at all times," Manning said. "That's what being Tennessee is all about, and I promise you I got your back. I'm pulling for you."