Tennessee appears to have found a candidate to replace Charlie Baggett quickly, and it didn’t have to look outside the program.
That would still leave one vacancy for the Vols though, and the next move might take a bit more effort.
According to a source with knowledge of the personnel but not authorized to speak publicly, UT is expected to move Darin Hinshaw from quarterbacks coach to wide receivers coach, give offensive coordinator Jim Chaney responsibility for the quarterbacks and seek to hire a full-time assistant to handle running backs as the staff is shuffled slightly in the offseason.
The Vols don’t have a specific timeline in place for filling the job. But regardless of how long it might take, the expected emphasis on finding a running backs coach at least suggests what direction the staff is headed as it moves forward. The school has not formally announced Baggett’s retirement or any possible financial considerations at this point, and officials could not confirm a change in roles for Hinshaw.
Hinshaw spent the last two seasons in charge of quarterbacks for the Vols, but he brought three years of experience handling wideouts with him from his time at Memphis when Derek Dooley made him a part of his first staff at UT.
The Vols finished the season ranked No. 116 in the nation in rushing offense, averaging just more than 90 yards per game on the ground. Chaney was officially designated as the running backs coach in addition to his responsibilities as the offensive coordinator, though graduate assistant Chino Fontenette was heavily involved with the position.
With potential candidates perhaps participating in the postseason, a move might not be made until next month.
Among possible targets, preparations for a bowl game wouldn’t be a factor with recently fired Memphis coach Larry Porter. South Carolina running backs and tight ends coach Jay Graham, a former UT running back could emerge as a target for the Vols in the search as well.