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Pruitt discusses quarterback situation and what went wrong against Auburn

Pruitt did not name a starting quarterback for Saturday's game against Vanderbilt.

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Jeremy Pruitt complimented both Jarrett Guarantano and Harrison Bailey during his weekly Monday press conference. He did not mention a potential starter for Saturday's game at Vanderbilt. 

Both Guarantano and Bailey played in last Saturday's game against Auburn. Guarantano completed 15 of his 23 passes for 156 yards. He threw an interception near the goal line that Tigers defensive back Smoke Monday returned for a touchdown. 

"He did a lot of really good things in the game," Pruitt said about the redshirt senior. "Obviously, there's probably three or four plays in the game that needed to be better. Particularly, that [interception] that was a game changing play."

Bailey came in relief of the redshirt senior, completing seven passes for 86 yards. He led the Vols on a nine-play, 75-yard touchdown drive in the fourth quarter. 

The true freshman has seen action in three games now. He has thrown 14 completions for 175 yards. He also has 22 rushing yards. 

"I've liked his presence. He's seemed to be really calm. He stepped in there and made two or three really good throws," Pruitt said.

Mistakes from the quarterback position have been a factor in Tennessee's current five-game losing streak. The Vols lost each game by double-digits, marking the first such streak in program history.

Some of those issues continued in last Saturday's loss to Auburn. However, Pruitt believes there were a multiple positives against the Tigers. 

"I thought it was probably our best performance, especially up front. I felt like we really dominated the line of scrimmage. Created some explosive plays in the running game. I thought our backs ran extremely hard," Pruitt said. 

The Vols outgained Auburn, 464-385. Tennessee also committed less penalties and won the time of possession battle. 

They aim to snap their losing skid this Saturday at Vanderbilt. The Commodores are 0-7, as we enter the final stretch of the season.

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