Butch Jones has brought a different philosophy to Knoxville. But one of his recent tactics may be the most original.

Jones assigned the Vols an offseason reading project that turned into a life and habit-shaping event, according to the team’s official website. The Tennessee football team read Jon Gordon’s The Energy Bus, a motivational book that uses the story of a disgruntled businessman to present 10 rules to guide the ride of your life, leading up to the 2014 season.

The book’s message is looking at attitudes and thinking of situations and interactions in a positive light, rather than the negative that may dominate a person’s way of thinking.

“I think it puts everything into perspective about the energy and the positive mindset, the positive attitude that you have to have each and every day,” Jones told UT Sports. “Being very gracious for what you have and putting everything into perspective, everything is how you look at things, how you interpret things and being the driver of your own bus. You’re responsible for the vision that you create for yourself and the positive, upbeat energy that’s required on a day-to-day basis to be successful.”

Tennessee players picked individual words that define them for the 2014 season and beyond. Jalen Reeves-Maybin selected a word to represent him as both a football player and a person.

“My word is DEPENDABLE,” Reeves-Maybin said. “I want to be someone that people can count on. When they hear my name, I want people to know what they’re going to get, that I’m somebody they can trust.”

Josh Smith, who struggled through injuries and dropped passes as a freshman, chose the word NEW as a symbol of rebirth entering his sophomore season.

“I didn’t like my season last year, so I came up with NEW because it’s a new year, a new me, a new hour, a new moment,” Smith said. “I didn’t want to go back to last year, so I’ve focused on the new me. I’ve taken that word and ridden with it, I haven’t hopped off that bus.”

Senior quarterback Justin Worley, who’s never experienced a winning season during his time at Tennessee, selected WINNER.

“I came up with the word before the start of the season, so part of it was winning the quarterback position, winning the faith of these coaches again. I want to go out as a winner and someone that put this program back on the right track.”