Tag Archives: Vols Football

Big names are what Vol fans want to hear

Unfair or not, for the next head coach of the Tennessee Vols, if his name is not Jon Gruden, he will not be given a fair shot by some fans. (Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons)

Members of Vol Nation were awakened by buzzing phones full of twitter alerts and text messages Tuesday evening.

The commotion caused by Memphis’ WREG News Channel 3 sports team – which announced that everyone’s favorite candidate, Jon Gruden, had an offer in hand to become head coach of the Tennessee Volunteers that also included a partial stake in the ownership of the Cleveland Browns – was welcome to a fan base plagued by bad news and terrible circumstances over the past five years.

However, the announcement was met quickly with Gruden himself denying the report on “ESPN’s Mike and Mike in the Morning” show on Wednesday. Which was followed up a few hours later with this report.

We all know coaches lie. A few short years ago, 72 hours before he took the job, Nick Saban said he would not be the next head coach at the University of Alabama.

But that is beside the point, which is that even if Gruden is not going to be the next head coach for Tennessee, Vol fans want – and it could be argued need – to hear big names for the sake of their sanity, the program and for the University of Tennessee.

The program needs the hire because more instability will lead to further decline in season ticket sales, fan base passion and donations from private donors. That in turn affects the University which until a few days ago received money from the athletic department to help fund efforts like scholarships and fellowships.

But lets focus on the commoners of the world instead of the donors, such as Pilot/Flying J Travel Center owner Jim Haslam, son and Cleveland Browns owner Jimmy Haslam and the other big dollar donation families.

Tennessee fans have taken to the message boards, social media, YouTube and any other forum that allows them to share their voice demanding that Gruden be hired.

But why him is the question that a lot of outsiders may be asking. The reasons are there – thin ties to the program and a plot of land 45 minutes outside of Knoxville – but it is more than just a few simple reasons. It’s more than just a single man.

Florida State’s Jimbo Fisher has emerged as another potential “name candidate” despite denials of any interest in other jobs from the man in Tallahassee. (Image courtesy of Florida State Athletics)

The Volunteer faithful want to believe that their program is the best in the entire world. With all of their hearts, the fans who don the Orange and the White want to know that they are on top of the college world.

Forget the other UT, the forsaken school down south with 14 national titles, Urban Meyer’s new team or his old one.

To the people who pledge their allegiance to the program located on Rocky Top, there is nothing better.

In order to justify this, the nation’s top football coaches must be sought after because, to them, no one wants to turn the job down.

With some of the fanatical fan base finally beginning to move on from the lure of the ESPN Monday Night Football commentator, two names have emerged as potential big hires – Florida State’s Jimbo Fisher and Oklahoma’s Bob Stoops.

At 47 years of age, Fisher is finishing up his third year as head coach of the Seminoles and boasts a 29-10 overall, 18-6 in ACC record headed into Saturday’s ACC Championship game.

Boasting experience in Baton Rouge under Nick Saban and time spent on the Plains under Terry Bowden, Fisher’s familiarity with the SEC and nationally recognized recruiting prowess are things that Vol fans can get behind.

The West Virginia native is rumored to be unhappy that his 10-1 Seminoles were ranked behind two 9-2 teams from the SEC heading into the final weekend of the season. Fisher wants a national title and, according to reports, does not know if the ACC gives him the best opportunity to get said title.

Before arriving in Norman, Bob Stoops previously coached under Steve Spurrier in Gainesville, Fla. as the defensive coordinator for the Florida Gators. (Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons)

But with a top-level job and a good thing going in the Sunshine State, the actuality of Fisher’s willingness to listen still remains to be seen.

The same could be said for Stoops, who is currently sitting on a 148-36 overall record for the Sooners.

The Ohio native is attractive to Tennessee fans with a national title under his belt, seven conference championships and only five home losses since he took over the Big 12 program in 1999.

Stoops record speaks for itself, so why would he leave the program he built you may ask.

Like his mentor, Spurrier, sometimes a coach comes to the realization that he has built the fans’ expectations too high – some in Norman are not happy with 10 win seasons and BCS bowls anymore.

Having reportedly spoken with the Head Ball Coach, Stoops may be looking to restart his coaching clock somewhere else – which could also bring a renewed passion that could help to improve his already excellent stats.

Both Stoops and Fisher bring name recognition and success, and with the $ 18 million recently freed up by UT Chancellor Jimmy Cheek, Vol fans want name recognition and success.

Tennessee fans do not want to spend sub $ 2 million and get a coach from a non BCS conference school with a sub .500 record.

So the only question that remains is this: What does Dave Hart want?


Swamp fail by the Vols; Football news

Last night the Vols basketball team traveled to Gainesville, FL to take on a Florida team that needed to win to get into the NCAA Tournament next month. Those Gators did just that beating Bruce pearl for only the 2nd time during his tenure as Vol’s head coach. The Vols star player was out for most of the game and another Vol did his best to try to fill those shoes but it was not enough to overcome a team bent on winning its way into an at-large bid. This was a “Kansas” victory for this years Florida Gators and with their upcoming schedule they had to win at least one, and unfortunately it turned out to be us.

Find out details on the loss and reaction to the loss as well as football news by clicking here!


Staff Salaries

University of Tennessee Athletics released the following. The board is now going over memorandum of understandings and approving bonus’s and such. Details later.

Coach Position   Length   Salary

Derek Dooley Head Coach    6 years    $1,800,000

Charlie Baggett Assistant Head Coach/Wide Receivers    3 years   375,000

Jim Chaney Offensive Coordinator/Running Backs    3 years     425,000

Harry Hiestand Offensive Line    2 years    200,000

Darin Hinshaw Quarterbacks    2 years    150,000

Terry Joseph Recruiting Coordinator/Defensive Backs    2 years    175,000

Eric Russell Special Teams/Tight Ends   2 years   200,000

Chuck Smith Defensive Line    2 years   225,000

Lance Thompson Linebackers    3 years    375,000

Justin Wilcox Defensive Coordinator   3 years    600,000

Tennessee also announced the hiring of Bennie Wylie as head football strength coach under a two-year contract for $225,000 a year.


Dooley Hires: Offensive Staff

Coach Dooley came in focused on recruiting first, completing his staff second. He did both in a timely manner and was overall successful. However because of Dooley’s media policy preventing his staff from meeting with the media a lot of fans don’t know much about the coaches. This post is designed to do tell you about them and my thoughts on the hire. Who did Dooley hire? Click here for details


Our New Head Coach

Well guys for the second time in two years we as vol fans are trying to get to know a new coach and his staff. Unfortunately for us this coach comes from the Nick Saban line and doesn’t do media interviews all that often and puts his staff and the new freshman off limits to the media. Now I can understand he is busy…I mean he is evaluating tape on our current players, evaluating recruiting tapes, trying to put together the program his way and all that jazz. But Coach Dooley you need to get us the fan base behind your program too. Don’t get me wrong I fully support coach double d and all that he is doing here but I think the transition from WAC to the SEC may be taking some getting use to. From fully closing practice to the media and not letting anyone watch (including people who work there unless they are directly involved with practice) to not even contacting our only recruit for next season who was committed to us? Things have changed and Dooley needs to get it together quickly.

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