Maurer will start at QB for Tennessee against Miss. State

Tennessee Vols

Tennessee quarterback Brian Maurer looks for a receiver against Florida during the second half of an NCAA college football game, Saturday, Sept. 21, 2019, in Gainesville, Fla. (AP Photo/John Raoux)

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee coach Jeremy Pruitt says freshman quarterback Brian Maurer will remain the starter Saturday when the Volunteers host Mississippi State.

Pruitt had said Monday that Maurer “would really have to have a bad week of practice not to” start the Mississippi State game. Pruitt confirmed Wednesday afternoon that Maurer will start.

Maurer made his first career start last week and went 14 of 28 for 259 yards with two touchdown passes, one interception and a fumble in a 43-14 loss to No. 3 Georgia. Jarrett Guarantano had started 22 of the Volunteers’ last 23 games leading up to the Georgia matchup.

Pruitt also said Wednesday that the Vols plan to redshirt receiver Brandon Johnson, enabling the senior to have one more year of eligibility. Johnson had 37 catches in 2017 and 14 more in 2018 but has only two receptions for 31 yards in four games this year.

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