For the second year in a row, a freshman quarterback is going to start for Tennessee.

Volunteers’ coach Derek Dooley announced Justin Worley as the starter Saturday against No. 13 South Carolina after senior Matt Simms had two less-than-stellar performances against No. 1 LSU and No. 2 Alabama.

“I just feel like it’s something we need to do,” Dooley said.

Sophomore Tyler Bray, who is out with a broken thumb, took over for Simms as the starter in the ninth game of the season against Memphis on Nov. 6.

“I think we have to be very cautious to say it’s like last year, because I know that’s what everybody thinks,” Dooley said. “But we had a lot more data on Tyler going into last season when I made the move than I do right now on Justin. We played Tyler in the first game. We played him at Georgia. We played him against Alabama. We played him at South Carolina, and he was the No. 2 the whole time he got here. This one is a little different and I don’t know what it is going to look like on Saturday.

“I am doing it with a little less expectation of what I’ll see is how I will say it. Last year, I felt like I knew what I was going to see. This year, I am not so sure, but I just feel like it’s the right thing to do.”

Worley, the Rock Hill, S.C., native, played in the fourth quarter in the 37-6 loss to Alabama, but didn’t even attempt a pass. He enrolled in classes in January and participated in spring workouts.

Worley broke numerous state passing records his senior year on the way to being named Gatorade National Player of the Year. Peyton Manning won the same award.

The freshman took snaps with the first team in practice Sunday, and tight end Mychal Rivera liked what he saw.

“Those went really well,” Rivera said. “Justin, ever since he got here, his development has been very, very good, and I have high hope for him.”

Tauren Poole already noticed that Worley was confident in his new position.

“We were talking yesterday — I asked him if he was ready to go,” Poole said. “He just looked as me and said, ‘Yes sir.’

“I have no idea why he called me sir,” Poole joked.

When Dooley played Worley on Saturday, the freshman was officially unable to use his redshirt this season, but Dooley said he doesn’t keep that in his mind too much.

“I just feel like for us to go out and try to win games, we are not throwing and catching the way we need to and we’re not calling the game the way we want to,” he said. “We just need to make this move. It’s not something that is done on a whim.”

A.J. Johnson, SEC freshman of the week

For his 13-tackle performance against Alabama, the SEC named A.J. Johnson Freshman of the Week. He also racked a team-high 11 tackles against LSU. His 45 tackles for the year are the most among freshmen in the league.

“It was a stature game and he shows up in those kind of hard, physical games,” Dooley said. “We’ve got to get more A.J. Johnsons.”

Jackson to start at left guard

Freshman Marcus Jackson will start in place of James Stone at left guard. Stone swapped places with Alex Bullard from center to left guard against Alabama.

“He’s doing some good things. He’s a little more developed physically than James,” Dooley said of the 6-foot-3, 326-pound Jackson.

MTSU set for 7 p.m.

Tennessee’s Nov. 5 kickoff with Middle Tennessee has been set for 7 p.m. It will be televised on FSN. The LSU-Alabama matchup on the same day will start at 8 p.m.