KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - Derek Dooley finally is speaking the language Tennessee fans love to hear and haven't been able to use for too many years.
He boasted at Southeastern Conference media days that the league won't have Tennessee to kick around anymore. And he didn't stop there.
Dooley said he feels he has a team that can go "toe-to-toe for four quarters" with all the teams in the SEC.
Now the man whose job security depends on how many games his Volunteers win in his third season just has to back up all that tough talk. Tennessee has posted three losing records in the past four years and haven't finished ranked in the Top 25 since 2007.
Dooley's first two seasons featured the first consecutive losing seasons in a century.
(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)