The Tennessee football team will be without one of its top tacklers from a year ago for the 2017 season.
At his weekly press conference on Friday, Volunteers head coach Butch Jones announced junior middle linebacker Darrin Kirkland Jr. will miss the entire season after undergoing knee surgery earlier this week, according to SEC Country.
Kirkland suffered a non-contact injury last Friday, before undergoing surgery on Wednesday.
Last season, Kirkland recorded 45 tackles, including 10 tackles for a loss despite battling injuries throughout the year.
Without Kirkland in the lineup, the Vols will turn to senior Colton Jumper to fill his void.
Tennessee kicks off its 2017 campaign on Monday, Sept. 4 against the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta. Kickoff is set for 8:00 p.m. ET on ESPN.
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