KNOXVILLE (WATE) — Quarterback Joshua Dobbs etched his name into Vol history last year, but after Dobbs was drafted by the Pittsburgh Steelers, the Volunteers have a big need to fill: quarterback.
At this point it is a two-man show: Quinten Dormandy and Jarrett Guarantano.
“They may compete through pregame warm-ups and I think that’s healthy. It’s whoever goes out there first,” said Tennessee head coach Butch Jones. “I guess we’ll know on game day.”
It’s a competition that has lasted months and one that has no deadline in the eyes of Butch Jones. Dormany is a gunslinger from Texas and Guarantano is a New Jersey native who grew up loving Rocky Top.
“Going back and looking at pictures I’m able to see certain things like ‘Wow, that’s crazy. I was wearing Tennessee hats and clothing,” laughs Guarantano. “I was a big Peyton Manning fan growing up.”
The quarterback duo has led the headlines, forced to be compared to one another, but ultimately, they’re a lot alike. For starters, they both want the same thing: to play.
“As a kid you dream about playing in the NFL and this is just a step to get there,” said Dormandy.
“I grew up always saying dad I want to play in the SEC. Do you think I’m able to? Do you think I’ll be able to have the talent and size to be able to play and he always was the one who believes in me and now it’s finally here and I’m able to get my shot,” adds Guarantano.
Both are hoping to put on a show Monday night in the brand new Mercedes-Benz Stadium.
“It will be awesome. I can’t wait to see the stadium,” said Dormandy.
“My family just recently moved to Georgia. They are about 10 minutes away from there and I think that we’re going to have a lot of Guarantano’s there at the stadium so it should be a good one,” says Guarantano.
Neither are lacking in confidence.
“I feel like I’m a really accurate passer,” said Dormandy.
“I think that I am a ballplayer and I’m able to make certain throws in certain runs that people can’t make and I just love football,” said Guarantano.
Also, both are tired of being asked about the so-called battle they’re in.
“Just going out and competing, that’s really all I can do,” said Dormandy.