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VOLS VLAD RICHARD: 'I got a lot of grief about not going to Florida.'

Gator Clause caught up with Tennessee offensive lineman Vlad Richard on Wednesday.

Richard is a graduate of Piper High in Broward County. He's considered one of the Vols' best guards although he is currently battling through an Achilles heel injury. Richard will start on Saturday despite the injury. He's one of three starting offensive linemen who might play injured on Saturday. 

Richard, a senior who graduated in May with a degree in legal studies, had some pretty interesting things to say about Saturday's game against the Florida Gators, but first we wanted to ask him about that Tennessee billboard in his hometown.

Vlad GATOR CLAUSE: "Was it your idea to put that billboard down in Broward?"

RICHARD: [LAUGHS] "I heard it looks great. Tell me about it."

GATOR CLAUSE: "It's say, 'It's time.' It's got Eric Berry on a big billboard. It's on Oakland Park Boulevard and I-95."

RICHARD: "Oh, it's right there. That's around my neck of the woods. It's right by B.A. It's time we gave Tennessee some love down there."

GATOR CLAUSE: "How important is it for Coach Kiffin's staff to get back down to South Florida?"

RICHARD: "Oh, it's very important. Some of the best athletes in the world, in the nation, are from down in Florida, so being that we're going into The Swamp, into the No.1-ranked team in the nation's house -- go out there and pull out a win -- it's going to be big for recruiting. It's going to be big for the coaching staff. We already know what kind of coaching staff we have. Smart guys. They stay up all times of the night. They just work very hard and prepare and when you know you have coaches like that that are giving up their family time and just their own free time to prepare. It's just great to know.

"Being able to go down there and get a win is going to be big for recruits to understand that we have a special staff here."

GATOR CLAUSE: "Vlad, what's the No.1 thing you're proudest of throughout your college career?"

RICHARD: "I guess just staying humble and being myself and coming here. I got a lot of grief about not going to Florida and we haven't won in three years or whatever, so it's just all my friends and my family, you know, 'You should have been a Gator,' or what not. I feel like I made the right decision for myself. I'm the one who had to live through it and go through it. Going to Florida I might of had a national championship and SEC championship and all that stuff but I was looking at a bigger picture. I felt by coming here I got a better experience in life and what I wanted to do, which was better myself for my future."



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Nice story.


...pull out a win...? Oh, that's right, they will be singing rocky top all night and having a "blast" after they beat Florida. Sorry, I forgot that it's a forgone conclusion that Tennessee will win.

Sept 17, 2009 *remind Jo top ten ways Urban runs up score- things Janoris says to Nuke -10 things more likely than UT winning game

Kiffin: "I've been made aware by the Southeastern Conference that my comments this morning at a breakfast with our donors violated a conference policy. In my enthusiasm for our recruiting class, I made some statements that were meant solely to excite those at the breakfast. ... My comments were not intended to offend anyone at the University of Florida."

Of course you weren't trying to offend anyone Lame. You don't think that far ahead you douche canoe. What you were trying to do was show your audience how smart and on the ball you are. You're sociopathic behavior, while offensive, merely made Al Davis look like a really smart guy.


Good for Vlad in two respects.

Regarldless of how he actually feels, I'd think he was a wuss and a disgrace if he did NOT say his team was going to win. Leave the pooh-poohing to the head coaches, even if Lame seems to not believe in that particular tried and true SEC coach methodology. All those players have to believe they can win.

furthermore, that decision making process is precisely why a kid SHOULD go to college. Substitute "Florida" and "Gator" with "local favorite state school" and that is precisely what anyone should hope every kid says at the end of his college career.

I hope he gets run over repeatedly, but still seems like a good young man.

Maybe Kiffin allows his wife to take the recruits out? You guys ever think of that?

And you wouldnt have bettered yourself and your future by going to Florida? BS....He will be sorrrrry!

Oh, and does that "better experience" include getting whipped by Florida....Ummm, okay then Vlad...whatever.

Vlad is a good kid and has done very well for himself at Tennessee. He majored in legal studies and recently completed an internship working for a Knoxville judge. He has overcome many obstacles in his life and has made his family and friends in Broward County and Haiti very proud. Richard is a success story and deserve respect.


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