Report: Steele to stay at Clemson

UT still looking for defensive coordinator

Kevin Steele

Kevin Steele

Tennessee tried dipping into its past for a defensive coordinator.

The Vols will apparently have to look elsewhere.

Multiple reports Tuesday afternoon indicated Clemson defensive coordinator Kevin Steele had accepted the same position with the Vols and new coach Derek Dooley. But by the end of the day media outlets in South Carolina reported that Steele had changed his mind and would remain with the Tigers after meeting with his players.

No deal between Steele and UT was ever confirmed by the News Sentinel, and the school did not release any information about filling the position.

“There is no news to report,” the 51-year-old Steele told The (Charleston, S.C.) Post and Courier.

Steele signed a three-year deal worth $375,000 per season last year. The State newspaper reported that Steele would get a significant raise to remain at Clemson after “mulling a lucrative offer from Tennessee.”

The UT graduate spent two seasons with Alabama before working with the Tigers in 2009, and he worked two separate stints with UT in the past as well.

Steele started his coaching career as a graduate assistant for Johnny Majors in 1981 before earning a promotion to coach outside linebackers for a season. He returned to the program in 1987 for two years working with the defensive backs, and at least considered a third tour of duty.

With Steele electing to stay, Dooley will continue his search for a defensive coordinator. Linebackers coach Lance Thompson and defensive backs coach Willie Mack Garza appear likely to be retained, which would also leave a vacancy on the defensive line.

On the other side of the ball, offensive coordinator Jim Chaney will return for a second season with the Vols. He’ll be joined by new hires Charlie Baggett, Terry Joseph and Eric Russell.

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Comments » 494

volunteer_cowboy writes:

this is getting interesting

VolNavy1 writes:

This is another great hire. Go VOLS!!!

RoyaltyVol writes:

Great hire!

Bloodrunzorange writes:

Good stuff CDD! Go Vols!!

Vol86 writes:

21st century. Newspapers the last to report on stuff. Well, this staff anyways. Sounds like a good hire though.

volunteer_cowboy writes:

i dont think our last coach was a good coach but i do think he hired good coaches that made him look better and smarter than he really was. I think dooley is way smarter and really knows how to coach.

VOLFTBL writes:

The coaching holes are filling in quickly... hopefully recruiting is doing the same. Go Vols!

RoyaltyVol writes:

Now we can have the Steele curtain on defense!

ez2pleez writes:

This would be a great hire!

Keep it rolling "Double D"

Docrok writes:

Sounds like some really great hires! Did anyone check that guy from LA Techs background? Sounds really impressive too! I am really liking what I am seeing from Dooley establishing his staff! Very impressed to this point!

DERELICK_MY_VOLS writes:

That is a Championship Type hire right there!

Neyland123 writes:

Would be a great hire!!

MidTennVol writes:

Nick Saban explains his defensive philosophy (which is based on the 3-4):

"Let's allow Saban to explain his defensive philosophy in his own words. From one of his LSU defensive playbooks:

“[Our] philosophy on first and second down is to stop the run and play good zone pass defense. We will occasionally play man-to-man and blitz in this situation. On third down, we will primarily play man-to-man and mix-in some zone and blitzes. We will rush four or more players versus the pass about ninety-percent of the time.

“In all situations, we will defend the inside or middle of the field first – defend inside to outside. Against the run, we will not allow the ball to be run inside. We want to force the ball outside. Against the pass, we will not allow the ball to be thrown deep down the middle or inside. We want to force the ball to be thrown short and/or outside.

“… Finally, our job is to take the ball away from the opponents’ offense and score or set up good field position for our offense. We must knock the ball loose, force mistakes, and cause turnovers. Turnovers and making big plays win games. We will be alert and aggressive and take advantage of every opportunity to come up with the ball . . . . The trademark of our defense will be effort, toughness, and no mental mistakes regarding score or situation in any game.”

http://smartfootball.blogspot.com/200...

Now I wonder how that really differs from the Mustang package...

asleep#212036 writes:

I like the hire. Considering our issues at D-line and all the valuable, albeit painful, experience we have coming back at linebacker, the 3-4 may be the answer. Certainly looks as though young Dooley is surrounding himself with some competent, experienced coaches. With all the offensive line issues we have for next year, he needs to jump on that and hire his coach, and quickly. NSD is approaching fast and if my son were one of those recruits, I would at least like to meet/talk to the man my son would be coached by and playing for. Go Vols!!!

Vol86 writes:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

no1volz_fan writes:

The doubters need to look at this awesome staff Coach Dooley is putting together..omg and now with Coach Steele on D and Coach Chaney on O....this is really shaping up...Go Volz!

Vol86 writes:

Good hire. Better than grandpa Monte on sideline wearing depends.

asleep#212036 writes:

in response to MidTennVol:

Nick Saban explains his defensive philosophy (which is based on the 3-4):

"Let's allow Saban to explain his defensive philosophy in his own words. From one of his LSU defensive playbooks:

“[Our] philosophy on first and second down is to stop the run and play good zone pass defense. We will occasionally play man-to-man and blitz in this situation. On third down, we will primarily play man-to-man and mix-in some zone and blitzes. We will rush four or more players versus the pass about ninety-percent of the time.

“In all situations, we will defend the inside or middle of the field first – defend inside to outside. Against the run, we will not allow the ball to be run inside. We want to force the ball outside. Against the pass, we will not allow the ball to be thrown deep down the middle or inside. We want to force the ball to be thrown short and/or outside.

“… Finally, our job is to take the ball away from the opponents’ offense and score or set up good field position for our offense. We must knock the ball loose, force mistakes, and cause turnovers. Turnovers and making big plays win games. We will be alert and aggressive and take advantage of every opportunity to come up with the ball . . . . The trademark of our defense will be effort, toughness, and no mental mistakes regarding score or situation in any game.”

http://smartfootball.blogspot.com/200...

Now I wonder how that really differs from the Mustang package...

For one, it's effective. I love Chavis the man, but his 3rd down defense was atrocious and his zones too loose. Notice Saban will pressure the QB, something our Mustang package didn't do, and we paid for it every game. Go Vols!!!

RoyaltyVol writes:

I'll bet we paid big bucks to get Mr Steele. Of course I'm sure its less than Monte was making.

tennezz writes:

Will this be a Steele curtain defense?

volinlouisiana writes:

I'm loving these hires and alot of our staff has NFL experience. We can sell that just like the last staff, but we can also sell TN tradition and integrity, which the last staff couldn't. Loving it!

volinlouisiana writes:

in response to RoyaltyVol:

I'll bet we paid big bucks to get Mr Steele. Of course I'm sure its less than Monte was making.

Rivals is reporting 3yrs at a little over 600,000 per yr., so yes big bucks, and yes a little over half what Monte was getting.

Vols1998 writes:

Steeles Defense had good stats for 2009

Ranked 20th in the NCAA Div I
Higher better than UT
Better than all SEC schools except: Fla, Ala, and SC.

Games: 14
# Plays allowed: 967
YDS allowed: 4,400
Yds Per Play: 4.55
TDs allowed: 33
Avg yds per game: 314.29
Record: 9-5

Not bad considering they played a tough schedule.

Go Vols!

Cldvols1 writes:

in response to Vol86:

Good hire. Better than grandpa Monte on sideline wearing depends.

Lol, V86 you are crazy! On the topic it sounds like things are coming along nicely for CDD. Keep up the good work and continue to build on our stellar recruiting class! Go Vols!!!

TommyJack writes:

in response to asleep#212036:

For one, it's effective. I love Chavis the man, but his 3rd down defense was atrocious and his zones too loose. Notice Saban will pressure the QB, something our Mustang package didn't do, and we paid for it every game. Go Vols!!!

Opposing offenses would strive to get into 3rd and long against us. lol

23govols writes:

this is to great hires in the last to do in steele and baggett steele being a tennessee man and baggett u cant coach the like of chris carter randy moss ahmand greene derrick mason and plaxico buress and not be a good hire

Trifecta_Storm writes:

in response to Murvul_Person:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Did you not read the article???

FWBVol writes:

in response to Murvul_Person:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

A good coach can coach any number of positions on either side of the ball. This story even states that Lance Thompson has previous experience as a defensive line coach, which is one of the needs we have now that Blowgeron is gone.

jclvol writes:

in response to Vols1998:

Steeles Defense had good stats for 2009

Ranked 20th in the NCAA Div I
Higher better than UT
Better than all SEC schools except: Fla, Ala, and SC.

Games: 14
# Plays allowed: 967
YDS allowed: 4,400
Yds Per Play: 4.55
TDs allowed: 33
Avg yds per game: 314.29
Record: 9-5

Not bad considering they played a tough schedule.

Go Vols!

That is impressive. I'm also impressed by the leap they made at Alabama while he was there. In his first season, they ranked #31 in total defense. In his 2nd season (albeit with Nick Saban), they were #3.

CRFVols writes:

If we switch to the 3-4, who will be our big nose tackle? We need to get recruiting for them for the future!

RoyaltyVol writes:

in response to volinlouisiana:

Rivals is reporting 3yrs at a little over 600,000 per yr., so yes big bucks, and yes a little over half what Monte was getting.

Yea thats a good salary for DC. I wonder if he will bring Dan Brooks back with him?

Bloodrunzorange writes:

I wonder if Coach (Dan) Brooks had anything good to tell him before he "accepted" the job at Tennessee. I think Brooks was the D-line coach under him at Clemson. Interesting.... Go Vols!!

Volunatic writes:

in response to TommyJack:

Opposing offenses would strive to get into 3rd and long against us. lol

Good one.
I like Chavis and think overall he did a good job here. However, in '08 whenever we got an opponent to 3rd and long, I couldn't help but think "they have us right where they want us". My gut feeling turned out to be correct WAY too often.

Vols1998 writes:

in response to jclvol:

That is impressive. I'm also impressed by the leap they made at Alabama while he was there. In his first season, they ranked #31 in total defense. In his 2nd season (albeit with Nick Saban), they were #3.

Great Point, I did not have a chance to compare. Thanks for sharing.

GO CDD!

ctownvol writes:

Look for 6'4" WR Justin Hunter to be the next to commit to UT shortly.

RoyaltyVol writes:

in response to Witch_Doctor:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Calm down W_D, dont get too excited! *LOL*

Ayres_Hall writes:

Q: when did having former NFL coaches matter?
A: when X told us it did.

I hope the jock snifffers don't get mad when Steele leaves next year. It appears he is quite the rolling stone.

Volunatic writes:

in response to volinlouisiana:

Rivals is reporting 3yrs at a little over 600,000 per yr., so yes big bucks, and yes a little over half what Monte was getting.

Monte got 1.5 M for one season after the "retention bonus" was paid.

Vol86 writes:

I have become optimistic. Our recruiting class has quality we just need to finish with some quantity. Need to sign in the tweenties. We have a lot of holes left.

Volunatic writes:

in response to ctownvol:

Look for 6'4" WR Justin Hunter to be the next to commit to UT shortly.

I hope you're right. He looks like a pretty good one.
A bit skinny, but tall and fast.

winbigvols writes:

in response to Vol86:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Well said. I totally agree.

USNVOL writes:

Ok KNS,what is the negative stuff about him?
I am sure you have something on him or have heard something bad about him ....Right?
Go Coach Dooley and Welcome Coach Steele.

RoyaltyVol writes:

in response to Ayres_Hall:

Q: when did having former NFL coaches matter?
A: when X told us it did.

I hope the jock snifffers don't get mad when Steele leaves next year. It appears he is quite the rolling stone.

Unless UT has a great year next year and far exceed expectations, then Im sure Steele will be here more than 1 year, but it may be a short time he is here. My guess is 3 years.

Summerfield_Vol writes:

As long as he can defend against the spread, which it seems everybody is running these days. If he stop it we will be OK. Personally I like the 4-3 pro type defense. I guess that is why I am sitting here typing and not coaching.

Vols1998 writes:

in response to Vol86:

I have become optimistic. Our recruiting class has quality we just need to finish with some quantity. Need to sign in the tweenties. We have a lot of holes left.

Your spot on! We need some BIG Uglies on the OL and I hope we can keep all of our WR, to include Mark A.

I think CDD is building a very creditable staff that will help us forget X and Xsr.

Go UT!

CRFVols writes:

in response to Summerfield_Vol:

As long as he can defend against the spread, which it seems everybody is running these days. If he stop it we will be OK. Personally I like the 4-3 pro type defense. I guess that is why I am sitting here typing and not coaching.

I like the 4-3 as well.....but rumor has it there's a team out of New York that it's working pretty well for in the playoffs right now.....lol

CRFVols writes:

by "it" I meant the 3-4

UTBEATEMALL writes:

Now let's finish with Gunter Brewster as o-line coach and we'll be cooking with Crisco! My guess is that Hamilton and Dooley like the situation from last year that the DC doesn't coach a position! It sounds like Joseph will be coaching LBs, Garza stays with DBs, and Thompson coaches the DL?? I wonder how everything works with the special teams coordinator? Is he coaching RBs too or does he just concentrate on special teams? I'm starting to think that Chaney will be offensive coordinator/QBs coach and they get rid of the QB coaching position?

HC---Dooley
OC/QBs---Chaney
RBs---???
OL/TEs---Brewster???
WR/Asst. Head Coach---Baggett
DC--Steele
DL---Thompson
LBs---Joseph
DBs---Garza
Special Teams---Russell

If this is the makeup of the coaching staff I'm pretty impressed with that! It makes sense if you can find a capable asst. coach to prioritize a special teams coordinator position over an individual QBs coach.

HHUUMMBBLLEE writes:

fire mike hamilton

RockyTopRooks writes:

good hire

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