Phillip Fulmer lauds Urban Meyer's 'courage'

Phillip Fulmer on Urban Meyer's resignation

Phillip Fulmer reacted with a similar type of shock as the rest of the general public when Florida football coach Urban Meyer abruptly resigned for the second time in a year.

Only after the surprise wore off was the former Tennessee coach able to dig up an emotion few can have with someone like Meyer: Empathy.

“His family is important, his health is important,” said Fulmer, who was presented with The Knoxville Award by the Senior Citizens Home Assistance Service at the Convention Center on Thursday.

“I think it’s just a huge statement that the pressure coaches nowadays are under. Good for him to have the courage to step down and do the things that are important to him.”

Meyer, 46, a two-time national champion at Florida, cited a desire to get closer to his family at his Wednesday resignation news conference.

After the 2009 season, Meyer cited health-related concerns when he briefly resigned before returning one day later.

Fulmer, who compiled a 152–52 record and led the Vols to a BCS national championship, has had his name linked to various coaching opportunities across the country since he was fired in 2008.

He has not completely dismissed the idea of a return to coaching, as he had his name recently associated with the opening at Minnesota, but reiterated Thursday that he was happy with his business venture.

Fulmer is a partner at NorthShore Management Co., a holding company founded by Mike West.

“If something comes up that really strikes me as something that is important, then I would look at it,” he said. “At this point that hasn’t happened.

“We’ll just see where God leads us.”

Dooley Gets Shuler’s Vote: Former UT quarterback Heath Shuler, who introduced Fulmer, gave first-year UT coach Derek Dooley his seal of approval.

“I think Coach Dooley has done an incredible job,” said Shuler, who is now a congressman in North Carolina. “He’s probably met expectations or exceeded some expectations.

“What I was able to see is what kind of players he’s surrounding himself with and the coaching staff … That’s what Tennessee needs and deserves. I’m so excited about what he brings to the table for our university.”

Despite representing North Carolina, Shuler said he would still root for the Vols against North Carolina in the Music City Bowl on Dec. 30 (TV: ESPN, 6:30 p.m.).

Andrew Gribble covers Tennessee football and recruiting. He may be reached at 865-342-6327. Follow him at http://twitter.com/Andrew_Gribble and http://blogs.knoxnews.com/gribble/

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Comments » 120

mountainbrook writes:

in response to back2z1:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Give him a call. He's available for the Florida job.

wazzya69vol writes:

in response to back2z1:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

back2zl, let me ask you a simple question with no hidden motive, would you want him to be your Head Football Coach right now? It's a simple yes or no, no hedging needed. GBO

Wayfarer writes:

Back2z1,

I think Fulmer was an excellent coach for the most part but he is not the best coach ever at the University of Tennessee. That honor falls to the General. I appreciate every thing Coach Fulmer did for the Vols and I cringe when others are so critical of him. Paul "Bear" Bryant called General Neyland the best coach ever, and considering his own resume I think I'll will believe him. Coach Fulmer's teams struggled each time David Cutcliffe left the program. He had a great run at UT and I wish him the best of luck in what he does in life. Brigadier General Robert Neyland is the best coach ever to coach the Vols.

DooleysOrangePants writes:

in response to back2z1:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

youve got other things to worry about. loser

stompintheswamp2 writes:

Meyer quit when times got tough last year, and he quit when times got tough this year. If he was gearing up to play Oregon in the NC would he have announced his retirement? HeLL no!! On a separate note, I heard the flu affected many gators this year, which played a part in the results of 5 ballgames, all of which happen to be losses.

cloudodust writes:

Well, I guess Schuler shoots down the theory that all DEMS are clueless, in part. At least he's pulling for the Vols vs his elective state. Pass and catch given...GBO

VolinCalif writes:

in response to back2z1:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Z Like I said yesterday you are a lot like my Grandson. Very bright and all but You can't say anything nice without gouging someone. Wash your mouth out with soup while you brush your teeth tonight.
The grandson I refer to is the one I am raising and he is only 11.

peyton4heisman writes:

Phil, go grab that Florida job! You could use the money and we could use the wins! Seriously though, I agree with Heath and I wish Fulmer the best of luck! Go Vols! Beat them 'Heels!

romevol writes:

in response to jrod:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

jrod - you sir, are the idiot troll. Go away.

wazzya69vol writes:

back2z1, still waiting, YES or NO?

VolFanNC writes:

Normally the "spend more time with the family" line comes from politician's who have done something that has caused them to do so. I wonder if there are skeleton's in UM's closet that were going to appear?

DutchOrangeVolsOrange writes:

Look, I have come up with this list of what I think would be excellent candidates for the head coaching job at the UF.

#1 Ron Zook Bring back the Zooker! I insist!!

#2 Terry Bowden It's been a long time since We have seen him running up and down the sidelines flaying those arms around

#3 Mike Duboise: I know He is an Alabama Guy, but hey We can all hope!

#4 Bring back Lou Holtz. No, I enjoy Lou's commentaries way too much!

#5 Lee Corso Wait, Corso is an FSU Guy right? Scratch that!

#6 Lane Kiffen Make sure Lane brings Ed Oregeon with him though

#7 Jerry Dinardo Yeah, that I bone option is just what Florida needs. Is Jerry still around

#8 Mike Shula: Hey He is Don's Son. You can't miss!

#9 Hal Mumme: He'll go for it on 4th and 10 from his own five and boy howdy that works for me!

#10 Ray Goff: I just like saying Ray Goof

Florida can not miss if they bring in one of these Guys! :)

volsbandit writes:

Has anybody else heard the rumor that Fulmer could be headed LP Field to coach the Titans?

dead_vol_foul (Inactive) writes:

in response to cloudodust:

Well, I guess Schuler shoots down the theory that all DEMS are clueless, in part. At least he's pulling for the Vols vs his elective state. Pass and catch given...GBO

used to be a pub, left when the religious freaks took over. piss on both parties, both suck.

but, hey, thanks for bringing it up.

jesus.

dead_vol_foul (Inactive) writes:

I still think the gators get some guy like the boise state, utah, or tcu coach.

when you look around....there really aren't a lot of proven constant winners.

Halls3 writes:

Nice words from a classy coach & human being.

jobrando#216494 writes:

in response to volsbandit:

Has anybody else heard the rumor that Fulmer could be headed LP Field to coach the Titans?

After last night I think Phil would do as good as Fisher's team. Sad part about the Titans is they will win one more game and not be in position for Mallet or CAM. I think CAM is a perfect fit for the Titans.

pdhuff#552644 writes:

At least Urbane bailed before water started coming over the railing.

They still have a bowl game to lose.

usnavyvolfaninva_still_getting_paid writes:

It's really hard with the gayta trolls on here spewing their nonsense to give an objective analysis, but when a coach feels he can't give his best, it's time to step down. I don't necessarily like UM, but the fact is it seems to me like he made the right decision.

usnavyvolfaninva_still_getting_paid writes:

in response to Wayfarer:

Back2z1,

I think Fulmer was an excellent coach for the most part but he is not the best coach ever at the University of Tennessee. That honor falls to the General. I appreciate every thing Coach Fulmer did for the Vols and I cringe when others are so critical of him. Paul "Bear" Bryant called General Neyland the best coach ever, and considering his own resume I think I'll will believe him. Coach Fulmer's teams struggled each time David Cutcliffe left the program. He had a great run at UT and I wish him the best of luck in what he does in life. Brigadier General Robert Neyland is the best coach ever to coach the Vols.

Very good post. I agree 100%

irishcoffee writes:

in response to stompintheswamp2:

Meyer quit when times got tough last year, and he quit when times got tough this year. If he was gearing up to play Oregon in the NC would he have announced his retirement? HeLL no!! On a separate note, I heard the flu affected many gators this year, which played a part in the results of 5 ballgames, all of which happen to be losses.

excuses are like rear ends, everybody got one, and some stinks more than others. yours reaks...

bnakk#240693 writes:

We all better hope they don't get Chip Kelly or Bobby Petrino or it will be over for everybody but possibly Saban.

Southland writes:

Fulmer was the second best coach ever at UT. Of course he struggled when he had to change assitants. Which coach is that not true of? When an a major change takes place most programs dip so does that make the head coach a bad coach? I hope people will get over their hostility towards CF over his three bad years and realize that he brought us a lot of great years. Now for the fun stuff. Wouldnt it be wonderful if we could start a rumor that Florida was going to hire Kiffin. That would be great. Someone send ESPN a text and tell them that is the rumor

kazoo writes:

in response to back2z1:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Fulmer was an excellent coach for his first nine years or so with the Vols--and then he was a demonstrably poor coach for the last eight years or so of his tenure. It was a tale of Two Fulmers. I credit Mike Hamilton for having the courage to sack Fulmer when he did, as the program had been sliding precipitously for years and all Fulmer wanted to talk about was his success in the early years. That doesn't cut it. Fulmer had a good run, he burned out, and now we have a new coach. I have a lot of respect for Fulmer, but this is a bottom-line game and if you stop winning you are going to be let go (except if you're joepa). I dislike the arrogance of veteran coaches who think they deserve lifetime employment.

Southland writes:

also, for everyone that brings up that Fulmer struggled when Cutcliffe left do not mention that Cutcliffe struggled pretty bad when he didn't have Fulmer and those of us that are old enough remember that Fulmer was critisized roundly for promoting from within

hcjournals#206623 writes:

Nice guys don't finish last. It's a marathon, not a sprint. Let's tone down the arrogance today. That was our downfall the last time we did well. Chill and act like you've been there before and we will have a good ride in the near future....Thanks for coming out....

CrankE writes:

Coach, I sure wish you would have had the courage to step down in December of 2001.

Would have avoided a decade of decline, a messy firing, and the Quiffen misadventure.

Bellem13 writes:

I vote for Lane K. for next HC at FU. This would be very exciting.

Coach PH, Coach Steve S., Coach Bear B., Coach Vince D., Coach Urban M., and the rest of the GREAT COACHES made the SEC the BEST of all times.

The Good misguided folks that spew their venom toward these Great Leaders should be ashamed of themselves. The General was the greatest of all our coaches, Coach Philip F. is second. Check the records. If you all can't speak with Honour and Respect for these folks then why make yourself and other VOL fans look so disgusting.

Thank you for your time, if you read this.
My UT, My VOLS, GBO!

orangecountyvols writes:

Vols,

Please note the very first comment on this subject........on our site, is from a troll.

Troll Z1 once again proves his obsession with Tennessee. Could not wait to make his daily appearance. What we have here on GoVolsExtra are the Tennessee fans and unfortunately........trolls like this.

Still, it only proves how much the trolls are bothered by Tennessee, whether we win or lose, they are consumed with us. It's kind of a weird compliment we realize, but these trolls like Z1 are really weird anyway, aren't they?

Orange_Juiced writes:

in response to Agent_Orange:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

HAHAHAHAHAHA

Bellem13 writes:

in response to orangecountyvols:

Vols,

Please note the very first comment on this subject........on our site, is from a troll.

Troll Z1 once again proves his obsession with Tennessee. Could not wait to make his daily appearance. What we have here on GoVolsExtra are the Tennessee fans and unfortunately........trolls like this.

Still, it only proves how much the trolls are bothered by Tennessee, whether we win or lose, they are consumed with us. It's kind of a weird compliment we realize, but these trolls like Z1 are really weird anyway, aren't they?

Yes, They really are.

Lostvolinhighweeds writes:

in response to usnavyvolfaninva_still_getting_paid:

It's really hard with the gayta trolls on here spewing their nonsense to give an objective analysis, but when a coach feels he can't give his best, it's time to step down. I don't necessarily like UM, but the fact is it seems to me like he made the right decision.

I think he made thr right decision last year when he attempted to quit. I also think Colin Cowherd had it right when he said the reason he changed his mind was Jeremy Foley held him to his contract and showed Coach Meyer how much money he would have to pay back (not just fail to collect). Not being willing (nor probably able) to pay a huge buy-out, Meyer stayed another year. But his heart was not in it. This years' less than stellar performance was the result. It seems after watching this season, Foley has changed his mind and decided to let Meyer go. A decision he should have made last year which would have saved Meyer a lot of ridicule and Florida a wasted season. Looks to me like Foley is not quite as smart as Florida fans accuse him of.

imnochumpvol writes:

in response to VolFanNC:

Normally the "spend more time with the family" line comes from politician's who have done something that has caused them to do so. I wonder if there are skeleton's in UM's closet that were going to appear?

VOLFAN I think you are right. This is just a thought and I had the same one last year. I have no proof but I think drugs may be involved. Before I get chastised it is just my own thoughts.

UTvols12342000 writes:

in response to DutchOrangeVolsOrange:

Look, I have come up with this list of what I think would be excellent candidates for the head coaching job at the UF.

#1 Ron Zook Bring back the Zooker! I insist!!

#2 Terry Bowden It's been a long time since We have seen him running up and down the sidelines flaying those arms around

#3 Mike Duboise: I know He is an Alabama Guy, but hey We can all hope!

#4 Bring back Lou Holtz. No, I enjoy Lou's commentaries way too much!

#5 Lee Corso Wait, Corso is an FSU Guy right? Scratch that!

#6 Lane Kiffen Make sure Lane brings Ed Oregeon with him though

#7 Jerry Dinardo Yeah, that I bone option is just what Florida needs. Is Jerry still around

#8 Mike Shula: Hey He is Don's Son. You can't miss!

#9 Hal Mumme: He'll go for it on 4th and 10 from his own five and boy howdy that works for me!

#10 Ray Goff: I just like saying Ray Goof

Florida can not miss if they bring in one of these Guys! :)

Knoxville native that lived in Rotterdam, Nederland for 3 years.

Hup Hup Oranje!

GerryOP writes:

Courage? You gotta' be kidding. It would be "courage" if he hung around and tried to straighten out the mess he created. He knew he couldn't do it (without a support group like Mullen, Strong, and Tebow) so he quit ... he walked ... he ran ... he quit. Hope he losses some sleep thinking about the promises he made to those kids last February.

When he was talking about coming back last January, several of us commented that the lowest thing Meyer could do was to come back, sign a big recruting class, and leave again at the end of the season. Well, that's what he's done. Courage? Hardly.

Witch_Doctors writes:

in response to back2z1:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Witch Doctor hope ZZ wife is reading!! Quick Carbon Monoxide has invaded your home making you feel light headed!!! Witch Doctor say quickly drag Z by the feet outside!!! Witch Doctor say he talking crazy!
(lol)
Bones never lie.

GerryOP writes:

in response to wallandhiker:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

He didn't retire, he quit. No courage involved. He quit.

Just a few days ago he made a statement about "Time to take it apart and rebuild." Guess after he said that he realized he had no idea how to do that so he quit. Whatta' guy.

Bellem13 writes:

in response to irishcoffee:

excuses are like rear ends, everybody got one, and some stinks more than others. yours reaks...

WOW! Now we have been upgraded from "Bad-mouthing" to "Butt Sniffing"

I'm Out-of-here.....run Vol Fans!

OTPVol writes:

FCPF was a good coach for many years until complacency set in. He is all Vol and will always be. I wish him the best for the future, wish his handing over of the program could have been handled differently, but it was time for a change. Last year was painful but I think CDD brings hope for the future. Y'all play nice and quit bashing FCPF every chance you get.

tallahasseevol writes:

I have a question for you guys.....the majority of you get very upset when Coach Fulmers name gets brought up about any issue. You then begin to insult him and make light of the years, hard work, and love he has for this university. Why is this? I, like many of you felt it was time for him to leave and I think the university is better for it in the long run, However, I am smart enough and have enough common sense to know how valuable he was and still is to the University of Tennessee. He was a better coach than any of us will EVER be and he has done more for UT than we will EVER do. Get over it!

DC_Vol writes:

in response to back2z1:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

ZZ,

I really hope you get the coach you truly wish for Philip Fulmer. Keep wishing and thinking Philip Fulmer head coach of Florida and just maybe the power of your positive thinking will bring Philip Fulmer to Florida as your next head coach.

I agree with you, he would be an upgrade over Meyer. Believe me honesty, loyalty and a pure moral compass would be a major upgrade over Meyer's poor character traits and flaws.

I do hope you get your wish for Philip Fulmer as your new head coach of Florida.

TommyJack writes:

Makes sense FHCPF would have empathy for Urbow.
Phil actually quit 4 years before he left; Urbow only one.

GerryOP writes:

in response to TommyJack:

Makes sense FHCPF would have empathy for Urbow.
Phil actually quit 4 years before he left; Urbow only one.

True....

orangeman1 writes:

in response to TommyJack:

Makes sense FHCPF would have empathy for Urbow.
Phil actually quit 4 years before he left; Urbow only one.

Maybe you should be more specifice because I thought his team tied for best regular season record in the SEC less than a year before he was fired. How could a coach that quit have the best SEC record in the toughest conference in the country after quitting. Man, just imagine if he wouldve been trying, UT couldve won no telling how many National titles because thats what UT fans are used to right? How many national titles has UT won in your lifetime again and who won it? that right the best coach to coach the Vols in our lifetimes. Phil Fulmer. I just hope Dooley can match Fulmer's success and have UT competing for the SEC every 3 years. Of course , I guess if he doesnt win the Championship game all the other good he does wont matter either like it was with Fulmer. I hope fans give Dooley more rope then they did the coach that brought UT its only NC in my lifetime and 14 seasons out of 16 with at least 8 wins.

NeylandWest writes:

in response to back2z1:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

To an extent, I agree with your last comment about "no hire at UT will bring that". But to blanketly say that isn't exactly accurate. Coaches like Chip Kelley, Chris Petersen, etc have proven they can whip people all over the field at lesser schools.

mocsandvolsfan writes:

in response to jrod:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

You're an idiot! That's sad. Seriously though I guess we have to welcome your idiocy on here to be open minded as a fellow Vol fan told me. Fulmer not only was our best coach ever but one of the best in the country. (btw no other opinion matters really)lol

mocsandvolsfan writes:

in response to wazzya69vol:

back2zl, let me ask you a simple question with no hidden motive, would you want him to be your Head Football Coach right now? It's a simple yes or no, no hedging needed. GBO

I'd have no problem with it. Great coach! However it wouldn't be fair to Dooley whom I think is becoming a great coach.

pj_ladyvolnMI writes:

in response to wallandhiker:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

The courage isn't about losing money. It's about leaving the thing that is a big part of his identity and perceived worth. He realizes that his value as a person is beyond the applause of his job, something that a lot of people, especially men and people in the lime light, struggle with. Those who don't really enjoy what they do and just work for $$$ might not understand how hard that is. I've experienced it on a much, much tinier level.

TommyJack writes:

in response to orangeman1:

Maybe you should be more specifice because I thought his team tied for best regular season record in the SEC less than a year before he was fired. How could a coach that quit have the best SEC record in the toughest conference in the country after quitting. Man, just imagine if he wouldve been trying, UT couldve won no telling how many National titles because thats what UT fans are used to right? How many national titles has UT won in your lifetime again and who won it? that right the best coach to coach the Vols in our lifetimes. Phil Fulmer. I just hope Dooley can match Fulmer's success and have UT competing for the SEC every 3 years. Of course , I guess if he doesnt win the Championship game all the other good he does wont matter either like it was with Fulmer. I hope fans give Dooley more rope then they did the coach that brought UT its only NC in my lifetime and 14 seasons out of 16 with at least 8 wins.

FHCPF was given plenty of rope. Anyone with 2 functioning neurons could see that. Wise up, pal.
With all due respect.

mocsandvolsfan writes:

in response to Wayfarer:

Back2z1,

I think Fulmer was an excellent coach for the most part but he is not the best coach ever at the University of Tennessee. That honor falls to the General. I appreciate every thing Coach Fulmer did for the Vols and I cringe when others are so critical of him. Paul "Bear" Bryant called General Neyland the best coach ever, and considering his own resume I think I'll will believe him. Coach Fulmer's teams struggled each time David Cutcliffe left the program. He had a great run at UT and I wish him the best of luck in what he does in life. Brigadier General Robert Neyland is the best coach ever to coach the Vols.

Good post but Neyland was a long long time ago! May be right though.

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