Fulmer spends day answering questions at ESPN

Mark Deaver, left, and Andreas Bardill, right, talk with Tennessee head
coach Phillip Fulmer on a set at ESPN studios.

Photo by Rich Arden

Mark Deaver, left, and Andreas Bardill, right, talk with Tennessee head coach Phillip Fulmer on a set at ESPN studios.

Tennessee football coach Phillip Fulmer toured ESPN studios in Bristol, Conn., and partook in many of the network’s television and radio shows. A look at some of his day:

  • Mike & Mike in the Morning on ESPN Radio: Discusses his legacy at Tennessee and just how competitive the SEC has become with co-hosts Mike Greenberg and Mike Gollic.
  • First Take on ESPN2: Co-host Sage Steele asked him in light of Pat Summit dressing like a cheerleader and singing Rocky Top and Bruce Pearl cheering in full body paint, which one would he do to show his school spirit? He paused, laughed and said he wouldn’t like to do either but he would most likely sing Rocky Top, wearing a male cheerleader outfit.
  • Live on-air promotion for new morning SportsCenters that will debut next month.
  • Met with former Florida Gators and Dallas Cowboys running back Emmitt Smith. "He’s a Florida guy, so we have the SEC in common. I was always was a fan of his both in college and the NFL," Fulmer said.
  • Met with Hannah Storm, formerly of NBC and CBS, who will anchor new morning SportsCenters.
  • College Football Live on ESPN: Joins host Dari Nowkhah and analyst Bob Griese, college football analyst on ESPN and ABC, in studio.
  • Prior to taping, Fulmer met Knoxville natives Andreas Bardill, who worked at WVLT before joining ESPN as a technical director, director Mark Deaver, who worked at WKXT (which preceded WVLT). Bardill and Deaver attended Tennessee. Griese, a Purdue grad, said with a laugh, "Couldn’t get into Purdue, huh?"

Tennessee football coach Phillip Fulmer took his turn in the national media spotlight with appearances on a variety of ESPN shows Monday morning and afternoon.

Starting with the “Mike and Mike in the Morning’’ show at 9:43 a.m., Fulmer spent the day in the cable giant’s studios in Bristol, Conn., discussing the Vols’ program and its place in the SEC.

“I’m thrilled to be going through what they call the ‘car wash’ here today,’’ Fulmer said during his appearance on ESPN’s First Take, the second of the two live television shows on which he appeared.

Fulmer also made live appearances on ESPN Radio’s “The Herd,’’ and “Tirico and Van Pelt,’’ and conducted a live ESPN.com chat. Fulmer taped appearances for the “Hot List for ESPNews’’ and “College Football Live.’’

Fulmer, wearing a white shirt, black sports coat and khaki slacks, handled all questions throughout the day in stride, even when the talk turned somewhat controversial.

First Take co-host Sage Steele asked Fulmer about last week’s drama in Birmingham, when he was served a subpoena while attending the SEC Media Days.

“It was in very poor taste; That is not the place for anything like that to happen,’’ Fulmer said. “I think everyone around it, except the lawyers who did it, thought it was in very, very poor taste. I think 99 percent are ready for all that to be behind everyone.

“There were some significant violations done a number of years ago,’’ he said. “That was investigated, the parties that be were disassociated from the University of Alabama, the penalties were paid.’’

Fulmer bristled when Steele suggested that UT’s projected starter at quarterback, Jonathan Crompton, has had issues with his work ethic.

“Jonathan really had no work ethic issues I was aware of,’’ Fulmer said. “He has been a wonderful young man to be around. A coup le of opportunities he had when Erik Ainge was hurt, he did very well. He’s worked really hard this spring to get ready.’’

Fulmer spoke often of SEC football passion and the high standards and expectations for success at the University of Tennessee. Along the way, he revealed he was approached more than once about NFL coaching opportunities.

“I don’t want to go anywhere else, there’s no place that would be better,’’ Fulmer said. “I’ve had a couple of NFL opportunities, at least approached about it.... (Tennessee) is a special place to be; they give us a chance to do well there.’’

As for the high expectations at UT, Fulmer said, “I understand that and I can live with that. I’m actually very appreciative of the fact that the bar is set that high.’’

Fulmer reflected on the Vols’ 1998 national championship season.

“It was a stunner,’’ he said. “We had a lot of great players, Peyton (Manning) was one of them, that graduated in that ‘97 class, and it was supposed to be kind of a rebuilding year.

“Tee (Martin) is such a dynamic person himself. Those guys weren’t going to let Tee Martin fail, they thought so much of him. We played great defense, good kicking game and (Martin) progressed as we went along; got a couple of breaks you’ve got to have to win a national championship, and became a good football team.’’

The Vols open the season Sept. 1 in an ESPN-televised game at UCLA.

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Comments » 176

The_Dude_Abides writes:

work ethic problems?? where did that come from? Have I missed something?

volwalk writes:

Way to represent, Coach!

1manningfan writes:

Fulmer you da man!!!

I watched all of his apperances today on television and i thought he did very whale in front of the cameras, and answered every question very professional. I was proud to know that was our coach on national tv representing the BIG ORANGE!!!

ctownvol writes:

I'm with you dude. I haven't heard of any problems with Crompton's work ethic. Anybody else hear something about that?

1manningfan writes:

oh yeah

the lady interviewing coach commenting on crompton had no clue what she was talking about, she sounded so stupid. I give props to coach for sticking up for his qb, and responding to that comment very fast. He sounded that he didnt like her questioning cromptons integrity and work ethic. So kudos to coach on that note

pdhuff#552644 writes:

"The bar is set that high"???

Has he not heard that 8 is enuf?

1manningfan, 9:24- you didn't mean that "did very whale", did you? Lord have mercy.....

1manningfan writes:

what do you want me to say he did terrible? their just interviews, dont look to much into it you might get a migrain. You Fulmer haters are getting old!! He is not going no where anytime soon so either your with the vols or not, and if your not take yourself and the other haters to another team and be negative there.

Jamey1210 writes:

Good Job CPF! This is your year to shut up all the ignorant Tennessee fans that want you gone. Hey CPF haters let’s look at how many college coaches have 2 championship rings that are coaching today? Then ask yourself how many coaches are out there that you think have the potential to be a Steve Caroll in the SEC. CPF represents the University of Tennessee with great respect. Just something for you CPF haters to think about. Once again, good job today. And yes I would rather have him than any other coach in the SEC.

OrangePower11 writes:


That link was AWESOME! It completely opened my eyes to reality. We are DOOMED. What ever are us poor Vols gonna do? Is there any room on the UF bandwaggon, I just dont think I could handle having a degree from a school that lost a football game. Do you have any cute links to the UF admissions site? Im looking for a good party, know of any cool frats in Gville (preferably not any Zook tried to fight)

Thanks in advance for you help...Kindest Regards

ctownvol writes:

Mcbrim- With all due respect.... What is your deal?

MrBamSeydu writes:

Get'em Phil!

CoverOrange writes:

take your pick of the freudian slip.


ctownvol writes:

Fair enough. Have a good day sir.

CoverOrange writes:

Ctown, on the outside chance you weren't being facetious. Part of the speculation, often spoken on this board, was that Cut didn't play Crompton for a hurt Ainge last year because they didn't see eye to eye. The next step in that speculation was that Crompton didn't do what Cut told him to do in practice. I don't buy it. Reportedly, Crompton got half the practice snaps.

ctownvol writes:

Thanks Turbo. I haven't heard such, but now it makes sense.

cobbwebb writes:

aaahhhh,the infamous mcbrim strikes again!

Orangebrewbasher writes:

mcbrim, that article was worse than anything john adams has ever wrote, I can't believe u would represent that article, oh wait, yeah I can

kindest regards

cobbwebb writes:

mcbrim represents all that is wrong with the gator nation

ctownvol writes:

mcbrim is like a bad case of the flu. Just keeps coming back. Bless his heart. What we do without him?

cobbwebb writes:

this clown (mcfreak) claims to be a mighty gator but if you log on at 12:55 a.m or 7:37 p.m. ol mcshmuck is on govolsxtra keeping tabs on his big orange, come clean mcgoon we still love ya!

cobbwebb writes:

i had something other than the flu in mind ctown!

Orangebrewbasher writes:

mcbrim reminds me of one of those bet-wetting kids who has to wear diapers till he is 8 years old and develops an inferiority complex over it, and now he uses a football program to take out his frustrations on those he does not agree with.

kindest regards

cjraney writes:

mcrib you posted a link to a fan's blog....you know, like this site here. Very authoritative. Good work.

VOLinDAWGland writes:

Perhaps the friction between Crompton and Cut, if there was actually any, was that Crompton's natural instinct is to look down field and try to make a bigger play happen where Cut likes to play the percentages at least until he gets to that point in the game where he see's his post-it note - "note to self, take a shot down the field or trick play" - regardless of the down, distance and game situation. That one seemed to always get stuck on top of the post-it - "note to self, keep pounding the rock".

cobbwebb writes:

hey mcbrim goes all out for us, uhh, i mean his fellow vol fans

CoverOrange writes:

As TJ likes to say "don't feed the manimals". Okay, that was a paraphrase.

cjraney writes:

BTW mcrib, when is the deadline for the Vols to submit paperwork to forfeit the game this year? Already missed it? Dang. Guess UGA's lucky they got theirs in early. See you in Neyland jerk off.

ctownvol writes:

Bamablows- Me too, but was trying to be nice about it. You know what I meant.

ctownvol writes:

You bring something alright.

cobbwebb writes:

mcbrim you my friend are the best entertainment on this site, better even than mr. john adams himself

VOLinDAWGland writes:

I saw the College Football Live segment and Fulmer looked great. He's much bigger than Griese and seemed very comfortable with some charisma. I think it was a great showing for him and the Vols. We play the Pac 10 on national TV we're supposed to be soaking up the publicity. Griese gave UCLA a 50/50 chance for upset...which is about what it should be but what that really tells you is that they believe TN is a much better team traveling across the country to play in a hostile environment and are trying to keep the interest up. Anything can happen as pdhuff reminds us, but if TN takes care of business this game should be over by half-time so the East Coast kids considering us can have a good show and get to bed at a decent time.

I haven't heard any of the hype around the Cal Bears this year. Is the media infatuation with that program finally over? Talk about the Vols making the analysts look bad, Cal did to them two years in a row with a handful of the top football players in the coutry...they're going to pay. Notre Dame would as well if they didn't have their own private network deal.

utkalumn writes:

I expect great things from Crompton. Since when has he been portrayed as having poor work ethic? That guy has shown incredible toughness in the small amount of reps he has seen. If my memory serves me correct he tucked the ball down and ran over a LSU defensive back in Neyland Stadium. To me that screams a will to win by sacrificing his body. He will be ready.

volunteer_cowboy writes:


cobbwebb writes:

enough about mcchump . coach should have used his spotlight on ESPN to tell how the crumblin tide have cheated for so many years. now that would have been classic i can picture it now.mike greenberg- "so coach how have things been going in knoxville"? coach-"well greeny things have been great every since bammer has quit paying players from our state, especially memphis". greeny- "coach are you excited to have a new off coordinator"? coach-"yes greeny, but you know im really excited about bammer and the fact that their rogue boosters are being exposed for what they are, scumbag jock sniffers". greeney- "coach how do you see the SEC panning out over the next couple of years"? coach- " well i see coach meyer leaving for the miami dolphins , like his hero coach saban, coach richt will be workin like heck at fsu, rich brooks will probably be deceased,and the dadgum stinkin crimson tide will be on the death penalty for all their cheatin ways and nick saban will be on his way to starkville for 17.8 million a year.

VOLS85 writes:


I never used to like you, in fact you really annoyed me for a very long time...you're here to get a rise and you do a good job, and at times you can be funny.

You're a Florida fan so I am obliged to hate you (as you have given me many reasons to), but if you were on my side I'd find you a grande old time!

Football season yet?

cobbwebb writes:

we all enjoy mcdipstick, we wouldnt know what to do without all his insight and witty comebacks.although you could lighten up on the stupid gator links, no one cares if tebow saved 300 from burning village in tawain.

cobbwebb writes:

nighty night guys , mcbrim tell momma mcbrim i will dream about her GO VOLS

Bigger_Al writes:

John Adams doesn't clean it up when his dog poos on his neighbor's lawn.

TommyJack writes:

Don't feed the manimals.

tnbud62#231266 (Inactive) writes:

Anybody who doesnt think Crompton has a great work ethic is a clueless moron.He has stayed 3 years playing behind a qb who had the courage of a 8 yr old girl and who wasnt sacked not because of an outstanding line ,but because of his overwhelming fear of being tackled.ainge was skered out of his briefs of being hit,We are extremely lucky to have such a loyal player as Crompton and he will make us all wonder why he hasnt played more the last 3 years.He is way more athletic than any qb we have had since Heath Shuler,I cant wait for him to shine

VolJoe writes:

utkalumn - I believe that was LaRon Landry he ran over. Not bad when your backup quarterback runs over their All-American safety

oldorange writes:

It was good to see Philip on a show that cast a good light upon our University and state. I think he did a great job...Is it September yet?

nicksjuzunk#646117 writes:

I read nafslov's post with baited breath... word after word, not baseless ratings!! Alas, he eventually bashes the TN quarterbacks of the last 10 years. Of course, we all know he is privy to inside information that proves his point.

jgvol8 writes:

Hopefully he turned an application in while he was there.

TommyJack writes:

Caution: Ignore light is on.

BADGES0413 writes:


Wow graeat pickup for the Gators, I saw on Rivals where he is the 17th best TE in the whole nation. Gators sweated out Duke and Vandy for his services. Rural Meyer must have been textinglikeheck to beat Cutcliffe out for this stud.

Some Regards

ThurmondEppy writes:

McKnucklehead (Mike McBride)-

Go play with the other fifty year olds down at the bridge table.

CoverOrange writes:

Hey, is that "PrimetimeVol" up there in that picture with Phil? I so jealous!

Monk writes:

Maybe this guy will help Urban Cryer when Georgia rushes the end zone again.

OrangeCrush writes:

Phil is looking dapper. Way to go Coach Fulmer...let's get the season started!

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