David Climer: Tennessee Vols coaching job lacks its previous glamour

Tennessee head coach Derek Dooley calls to his players during the game against UT Martin at Neyland Stadium Saturday, Sept. 4, 2010.

Photo by Adam Brimer, copyright © 2010

Tennessee head coach Derek Dooley calls to his players during the game against UT Martin at Neyland Stadium Saturday, Sept. 4, 2010.

Has head football coach at Tennessee lost its luster?

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Tennessee has not finished a season ranked in the Associated Press Top 25 since 2007.

This just in: It’s not going to happen this year.

Since the Vols currently are in the market for a football coach, it begs the question: Where does the UT job rank? Top 10? Top 25? Top 50?

It is in the eye of the beholder. And it depends on what factors you consider most important when ranking coaching positions.

Continue reading at The Tennessean.

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Comments » 116

Rumblefish writes:

Whomever the next coach is...if he has even "moderate" success (8-9 wins), he is going to be snatched up by some other team, and we will be right back where we are now.

VolnDallas writes:

I will go out on a limb and predict that no current coach who is at a school with reasonable BCS chances will leave to come to UT.

Why would Fisher leave FSU for TN for example? Strong leave UL?

Why leave where you are to come to UT and have to compete with UF, UA, SC, every year, and occasionally LSU, etc.

It is highly possible that in any given season, UT will play half the top ten teams in the country. You could do an incredible job and still go 8-4.

Let's face it: the SEC is super competitive and our administration has let us slip to a point where we will have to struggle for years to climb back to the top. I fear we have years in the wilderness ahead of us.

Due to all this, I see a 2nd tier hire coming, bad as I hate to say it. Hope I'm wrong.

cltvol writes:

With all due respect, Climer's 'with all due respect' is the most superficial ' w/a/d/r' since Talledga Nights!

tennrich1 writes:

I'm sorry but this article rambling and didnt make any REAL points....as far as the financial thing...getting it straight....I realize this is and op ed but the article is speclative at best....right hire...you're back on track....too much "sky is falling"...and I realize the author needed something to reach deadline....I get that...but this article is a reach....now even the media guys are sounding like 3rd grade girls...

volfanlostnbama writes:

Breaking News...Chaney is probably gone IMHO. Missouri fires OC. Missouri is Chaney's home.

http://www.mrsec.com/2012/12/oc-yost-...

volfanlostnbama writes:

Also, it appears here in 'bama land that Auburn is now chasing Kirby Smart pretty heavily at this stage. And the bamer's here are pretty uptight about it on the sports radio in the BHM area.

calvolfromkingsport writes:

Ohnest assessment based on emotions. The truth is that Tennessee has superior facilities compared to most schools. However, the fan's base has way too much misplaced passion. Unfortunately, the VolNation is getting it's just rewards for allowing Hamilton to hire and fire from the hip. Tsk, tsk, no amount of shaking orange fists at the sky will save us from this downward slide. If only Fulmer was given another year or maybe shouldn't have gambled with the terrible Clawson hire just like Dooley's Sunseri hire. Oh well, maybe the next guy won't feel the same pressure...Nah!

CrankE writes:

...lost it's previous glamour?

If only Climer's columns had once attained "glamour". Perhaps he should just shoot for mediocrity.

Climer read a few columns and threw his own, "me too" into the echo chamber. Tennessee's not an elite job, but they need an elite coach to make it an elite program again. Got it. Thanks for that brilliant, hard, edgy insight there, David.

volfanlostnbama writes:

Here's a rumor starting to float around now, copied this off of a coaching report on the Mr.Sec blog.

Two other “out there” rumors for you: a Chicago reporter posted on Twitter that a “reliable source tells me Tennessee has at least reached out to Wisconsin coach Bret Bielema” and CoachingSearch.com — more on that site below — claims former UNC coach Butch Davis might still be in the UT mix.

OwensboroVol writes:

in response to VolnDallas:

I will go out on a limb and predict that no current coach who is at a school with reasonable BCS chances will leave to come to UT.

Why would Fisher leave FSU for TN for example? Strong leave UL?

Why leave where you are to come to UT and have to compete with UF, UA, SC, every year, and occasionally LSU, etc.

It is highly possible that in any given season, UT will play half the top ten teams in the country. You could do an incredible job and still go 8-4.

Let's face it: the SEC is super competitive and our administration has let us slip to a point where we will have to struggle for years to climb back to the top. I fear we have years in the wilderness ahead of us.

Due to all this, I see a 2nd tier hire coming, bad as I hate to say it. Hope I'm wrong.

The same reason High School Kids want to go to a SEC School. They want to compete against the very best! I wouldn't want any other type of Coach or Player.

arkyvol writes:

i don't know how vol head coach rates in the scheme of things (hammy did his damndest to wreck it), but i can tell a poor job of writing and a worse job of analysis when i read it. this article qualifies.

volmike55 writes:

I usually go 50/50 on what Climer says, but this I totally agree with. It's not the job it once was, thats why I think we go after Tressel! A proven coach with Titles, come on its a no brainer; take the 5 game suspension in which we play the weaker teams and Florida which were not going to beat next year anyway. Take the 1 yr bowl ban, which lets face it may not be a great bowl anyway and move on. This is a important hire he would bring the credibility we desperatly need.

CoverOrange writes:

The expansion of the BCS conferences may be playing a significant role in coaches not moving from jobs previously regarded as second tier to first tier. Missouri and Texas A&M moving from the dark shadow Texas to the ESPN light of the SEC means more national recognition and money. Louisville moving to ACC, Maryland and Rutgers to Big10/14, coaches don't have to move for more glory/money, the school is moving for them. Boise St and Northern Illinois are showing you can get attention without being in a big conference. Hart may have to reconsider his HC experience requirement.

Louisianavol2006 writes:

I think this talk about how far the attractiveness of the UT pogram has declined is silly. Because Jon Gruden and Bob Stoops wouldn't take the job? Fisher and Gundy, too - they have high profile positions with lucrative contracts. I'd like to see either at UT, but if they turn down UT it will not be because of the state of UT's program. I don't think any of these would take the Alabama job right now if Saban left for the NFL again. Now, if we find out that candidates like Strong and Jones accepted equivalent offers at Auburn and Arkansas over a UT offer, then let's panic. This statement in the article that UT is having a slow go of it in finding another HC is dishonest. I suppose UK's got a better program than UT and Arkansas and Auburn b/c they've already landed a coach...give me a break...

wycoller writes:

The only reason to visit one of David Climer's stories is to view the posts. Have you ever seen Climer in person on or TV? Looks like he's constipated. Hates UT with a passion and nothing but vitriol spews from his poison pen. I really don't like the guy. He and JA must have been separated at birth.

volfaninutah writes:

in response to volfanlostnbama:

Here's a rumor starting to float around now, copied this off of a coaching report on the Mr.Sec blog.

Two other “out there” rumors for you: a Chicago reporter posted on Twitter that a “reliable source tells me Tennessee has at least reached out to Wisconsin coach Bret Bielema” and CoachingSearch.com — more on that site below — claims former UNC coach Butch Davis might still be in the UT mix.

Wow, really.. Bielema? we would get back to the days of ground and pound when Curt Watson played, and tailbacks slammed the middle of the line or dove over for a TD. Smashmouth football....something to think about.

brod writes:

the coaching position at ut is as glamourous as the money with it.

TNVOLNTX writes:

Why Tennessee? Big time coaches have Big Time egos and want to prove their skills on the biggest stage. There is no bigger stage in college football than the SEC. Within the SEC, there is no school besides Alabama with a greater tradition than Tennessee. #9 in all-time wins. #3 in all-time bowl appearances. #6 in all-time bowl wins. Add to the mix the fact that we have Top 10 facilities and we just freed up $18 Million in cash for coaches salaries, and it's not too difficult to make the case that this is still a top 15 if not a top 10 destination job, our recent travails notwithstanding.

budd#207344 writes:

Hire a good coach that will excite the fan base and you will be out of the money issues in two years. How does this guy keep his job? No thought given to what he writes. And everyone critices JA

D60 writes:

Make a off the wall offer to Saban. It will at least make Alabama Alum ante up more money and that is a good thing

shipperman#280095 writes:

Butch Davis appears to be on top of the charts right now

TommyJack writes:

in response to shipperman#280095:

Butch Davis appears to be on top of the charts right now

Hope not.

BigOrangeFreak writes:

I don't think the job has lust it's luster. I think the Athletic Director(s) have just not marketed the job as well as they could have.

If Hart botches this--and I believe hiring a Mike Gundy would do just that--he will be out in three or four years with the football coach.

15_counting writes:

in response to D60:

Make a off the wall offer to Saban. It will at least make Alabama Alum ante up more money and that is a good thing

Saban already has a raise and contract extention coming for winnning the SEC championship. How much the raise will be will be determined when he wins the NC. Over 100mil in the athletic fund! Not a problem!

thevoice writes:

in response to shipperman#280095:

Butch Davis appears to be on top of the charts right now

I'm thinking C Strong goes to UT or Auburn. It's "too bad" we won't see him coach against UF in the Whatever bowl.

shipperman#280095 writes:

in response to TommyJack:

Hope not.

In total agreement with you my friend

BigOrangeFreak writes:

Go after Kirby Smart, please.

Like many Vol fans, I wanted Gruden. With the lack of available head coaching candidates, we are at the unenviable position of having to roll the dice. I'd rather do that with someone who has performed at Smart's level than accept a less-than-coach just because he has "head coaching experience." (See Mike Gundy, Al Golden, Larry Fedora, and Butch Davis.)

Please, not Butch Davis!

beartn#223846 writes:

A few thoughts: I think we are currenlty somewhere between the #15 and #25 job. The facilities are top 5, we should be able to pay a top 10 salary, but the leadsership at the top (I'm talking more about the administration since Dr. Joe Johnson retired, not Hart)is weak, and the state isn't a recruiting hotbed.

As for why anyone would take the job, we give them the opportuity to compete at the highest level outside NFL at a place where you can win big. Yes, it is currntly a challenge, but I don't think so much has changed since we blew a shot at the natinal title in 2001 that Tennessee can't be successful again.

CCLC writes:

in response to thevoice:

I'm thinking C Strong goes to UT or Auburn. It's "too bad" we won't see him coach against UF in the Whatever bowl.

Charlie? "AND NOW YOU'RE PICTURING HIM IN ORANGE PANTS TOO TIGHT IN THE SEAT. I can't even begin to think about if this would be a good hire, because the prospect of this man sharing a field with Steve Spurrier is too absurdly hilarious to comprehend."

exlineman writes:

Every head coach is only as good as his assistants. Saban didn't go into LSU as a highly sucessul coach from Mich. St. Mr Hart come out of your plush office and look around at some of these high school coaches that are sucessful year in and year out. For example Maryville, Alcoa, several Memphis teams, Mt. Juliet and Beech. They are great coaches and would give anything for a start up the ladder to greatness. Look at some of the smaller colleges like Applachian State, Dale Jones beat Mich. last yr. I beleive. Look at other former vols.( Bill Bates) his dad was a coach. Al Wilson, T. Martin, Randy Sanders, Andy Kelley and many others out there would love to be an assistant coach and head coach someday. Every great coach had to start somewhere and didn't start as a big time coach. They made mistakes along the way and corrected their mistakes to become great head coaches. Some of these guys are looking for that great break and bringing some of them in as assistants could possiby help this program and they could be hired for a lot less than SUNSERI A poor excuse for a coach.

The next coach needs to look around Knoxville and talk with Fuad Reviez and some of the Colquits for coming over even part time and work with our kickers.

We have some great coaches and players in this state and sometimes they are found even in 1A sometimes. Didn't Herschell Walker come out of 2A in Ga. Remember Reggie Harper, from little old Hartsville, Trousdale Cty. and their former coach a Satterfield was legendary in high school coaching. This old myth about not enough quality players in Tn. is not always true and these kids from these small towns will give you 110 percent. I have watched several great high school games this yr. in 5a and 6a and have been impressed with the coaching I have seen from some of these coaches.

I personally am beginning to disbeleive everything I see written and posted on these sites. I don't beleive for a minute that someone hasn't talked with Jon Gruden. The only thing Hart is accomplishing when revealing these names he is interviewing is to give these coaches a big raise. We don't need to know who he is interviewing, just give us some one that knows how to coach and recruit and manage assistant coaches.

sjagold#565602 writes:

missed on the guy from N ILL the guy can coach and recruit he is young and is a real go getter the big name guy is not the answer. its going to take awhile to get the program where everyone wants it. does the vol nation have the mindset to wait it out?

whatthe84 writes:

This is what I have been saying for a long time most on here view UT through orange colored glasses. They think that we are viewed as this great opportunity like an Alabama, or a Notre Dame, Ohio State, Florida etc...well we are not viewed like that beyond your nose. Well the house is on fire and who wants to take on the job of putting it out and then trying to rebuild it when we don't really have the money? Our roster is not nearly up to speed and our reputation with the younger high school players is one of an also ran. We have not been a real factor during their young lives. We have all these traditions that don't mean anything to them since UT gets its brains beat out everytime they meet a school that is competitive. The signature win for CDD was NC State and their coach got fired at the end of the season! Everytime we have been in a big time game we always find a way to lose. We can't even recruit our own state. Tennessee is recognized as a state with a low number of big time recruits and I guess that is true. The problem is that UT can't even get the big recruits that are from the state. They are picked off by Georgia, Alabama, Auburn, USC...If you look at this years talent most all of the kids are going elsewhere and now Vandy is picking off good ones too. The future is bleak for sure the expectation level should be reset as to how and why a high profile coach could acquired. Realisticly we will need to take a unknown up and coming lower level coach. The only big name that could be a possibility is Bobby Petrino, he is radio active and might be pursueded to take on this house fire. I know that is not popular but I think it is true. I guess that maybe Charlie Strong is still possible and that would be positive, but it is not by any means a lock. Now Gundy is being thrown out there. I ask once again why would he leave his own school where they are supported by the billionaire T Boone Pickens to take this outhouse. Could we get some perspective on here and some since of reality. I don't want to hear about Fisher, Gruden, Gundy, Stoops...absolutely ridiculous!!!!

StoneJackBaller writes:

in response to VolnDallas:

I will go out on a limb and predict that no current coach who is at a school with reasonable BCS chances will leave to come to UT.

Why would Fisher leave FSU for TN for example? Strong leave UL?

Why leave where you are to come to UT and have to compete with UF, UA, SC, every year, and occasionally LSU, etc.

It is highly possible that in any given season, UT will play half the top ten teams in the country. You could do an incredible job and still go 8-4.

Let's face it: the SEC is super competitive and our administration has let us slip to a point where we will have to struggle for years to climb back to the top. I fear we have years in the wilderness ahead of us.

Due to all this, I see a 2nd tier hire coming, bad as I hate to say it. Hope I'm wrong.

Uh, I'm going out on a limb here myself and say that it will be $$$MONEY$$$ that will lure the coach in. If that doesn't work, the we are SOL.

JWilly writes:

On the possibility of Bret Bielema coming to the SEC. Not a snowball's chance...

BigOrangeRock writes:

I agree with 95% of the people on this site. we should bring Fulmer back.

;)

Vol_in_Mich writes:

in response to volmike55:

I usually go 50/50 on what Climer says, but this I totally agree with. It's not the job it once was, thats why I think we go after Tressel! A proven coach with Titles, come on its a no brainer; take the 5 game suspension in which we play the weaker teams and Florida which were not going to beat next year anyway. Take the 1 yr bowl ban, which lets face it may not be a great bowl anyway and move on. This is a important hire he would bring the credibility we desperatly need.

HeII No! Instead of the "Orange Pants" we'll have the "Red Sweater" Well, I guess he would have to change it to orange. Wouldn't mind having OSU's current coach!
We may have to wait till after the bowls to get the type of coach most want. I think most of this stuff going on is a smokescreen or sports writers just making stuff up to have a story. Don't worry about "saving" a recruiting class, with the right coach the players will come.

Go Hart, get it right!

Vol_in_Mich writes:

in response to shipperman#280095:

Butch Davis appears to be on top of the charts right now

Good Grief! It wouldn't suprise me.

VOLSONTHECOMEBACK writes:

Positives about UT football:

Has arguable the best facilities in the nation

Is the second all-time winningest program in the SEC (other than Alabama)

Currently has a lot of talent on the offensive side of the ball and upside potential relating to defense (can't get any worse ha)

Currently has a full 75 man roster compared to the depleted roster of 59 players in 2010.

Has a lot of money to throw out and the current coach will be considered a legend if he produces 10 + wins

Here are the negatives:

There will be a ton of pressure with this job (the candidate has to produce results or he's out within 2 to 3 years)

UT has fallen and the rest of the competition has moved up. That being said, the new coach will have to take a Pony and make him into a thorough bred race horse in order to compete.

Recruiting at UT will be more challenging than other SEC schools since Tennessee has little instate talent. I remember a Miami coach saying, "It's easy to get talent when you can walk out your front door and find it." It will be possible to get talent (look what Fulmer brought in the 90s), but more challenging than other schools.

JDX47 writes:

Randy Sanders, Sal Sunseri...Randy HC and OC with Sunseri as the DC. Guarantee you a low scoring Orange and White game...our D would look like pros in scrimmages.

D60 writes:

Lovie Smith, Kippy Brown....Lovie's time chi-town will be gone if the Packers beat him again

sjagold#565602 writes:

in response to whatthe84:

This is what I have been saying for a long time most on here view UT through orange colored glasses. They think that we are viewed as this great opportunity like an Alabama, or a Notre Dame, Ohio State, Florida etc...well we are not viewed like that beyond your nose. Well the house is on fire and who wants to take on the job of putting it out and then trying to rebuild it when we don't really have the money? Our roster is not nearly up to speed and our reputation with the younger high school players is one of an also ran. We have not been a real factor during their young lives. We have all these traditions that don't mean anything to them since UT gets its brains beat out everytime they meet a school that is competitive. The signature win for CDD was NC State and their coach got fired at the end of the season! Everytime we have been in a big time game we always find a way to lose. We can't even recruit our own state. Tennessee is recognized as a state with a low number of big time recruits and I guess that is true. The problem is that UT can't even get the big recruits that are from the state. They are picked off by Georgia, Alabama, Auburn, USC...If you look at this years talent most all of the kids are going elsewhere and now Vandy is picking off good ones too. The future is bleak for sure the expectation level should be reset as to how and why a high profile coach could acquired. Realisticly we will need to take a unknown up and coming lower level coach. The only big name that could be a possibility is Bobby Petrino, he is radio active and might be pursueded to take on this house fire. I know that is not popular but I think it is true. I guess that maybe Charlie Strong is still possible and that would be positive, but it is not by any means a lock. Now Gundy is being thrown out there. I ask once again why would he leave his own school where they are supported by the billionaire T Boone Pickens to take this outhouse. Could we get some perspective on here and some since of reality. I don't want to hear about Fisher, Gruden, Gundy, Stoops...absolutely ridiculous!!!!

right on your post. the program has been on a downward spiral for 6-7 years maybe longer. its gonna take awhile to get things right

DavidB writes:

in response to powerTbaby:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Great post. The speculations are a big problem. If Hart is talking to someone and trying to keep it secret, it will be posted on here simply by speculation. I guess they figure if they name every coach in the country they will eventually be able to say you heard it hear first.

VolinCalif writes:

in response to Rumblefish:

Whomever the next coach is...if he has even "moderate" success (8-9 wins), he is going to be snatched up by some other team, and we will be right back where we are now.

fish
dig the splinter out of your finger and stop crying. $5 Mil jobs are not easy to find and that is the range of the SEC Coaches pay. So I don't think many will jump ship once they are winning in the SEC. Who can afford Sab? Not many. We will start getting some real input tonight or tomorrow then we will see. There are some very good coaches available.

VolunteerLifer writes:

David Climer: Tennessee Vols coaching job lacks its previous glamour."

So do sportswriters. So do newspapers. But UT can increase its previous glamour by winning. But sportswriters and newspapers will continue in their downward spirals.

Vol_in_Mich writes:

in response to GlennFordsFoible:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

If you're so smart, make them stop putting Dooley's picture on here.
The Colon Flow Bowl is funny! I know you say stuff just to tick some of the fans off, but you do know what you are talking about most of the time. I don't know if you're this Jeff guy or not but I usually enjoyed your post & the reaction they get. Untill, you started with "Alumus, VFL & True fan" BS. Something about VFL & saying one is a REAL fan & another is not just rubs me the wrong way.
Except for the Gator trolls, we're ALL Vol fans!

VolinCalif writes:

in response to volmike55:

I usually go 50/50 on what Climer says, but this I totally agree with. It's not the job it once was, thats why I think we go after Tressel! A proven coach with Titles, come on its a no brainer; take the 5 game suspension in which we play the weaker teams and Florida which were not going to beat next year anyway. Take the 1 yr bowl ban, which lets face it may not be a great bowl anyway and move on. This is a important hire he would bring the credibility we desperatly need.

The true voice of reason. He could get things fixed in one year.

Vols7Twins writes:

in response to GlennFordsFoible:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Amen

JDX47 writes:

in response to titletownz:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

That is almost as bad as my Randy Sanders/Sal Sunseri comment. OUCH...that would be sad if we have to dig to Florida reject with a terrible record in current job. Skip Holtz would be like Dooley (good name, not so good coach).

rtrchatt writes:

in response to 45ReVOLver:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Perhaps the dumbest commentary on the Bama fb program ever on this site of largely uninformed
posters. I suppose Saban is responsible for all the exceptional PLAYER DEVELOPMENT in position players. Of course being a UT fan, I understand you know nothing of player development from watching your group the last 5/6 yrs. Every asst onthe Bama staff pulls their weight. You do not win 60 games in 5 yrswith a one man show Skippy. Keep your opinions to what you know best, little UT fb. 23 SEC Titles, UT 13. FACT

VolinCalif writes:

in response to whatthe84:

This is what I have been saying for a long time most on here view UT through orange colored glasses. They think that we are viewed as this great opportunity like an Alabama, or a Notre Dame, Ohio State, Florida etc...well we are not viewed like that beyond your nose. Well the house is on fire and who wants to take on the job of putting it out and then trying to rebuild it when we don't really have the money? Our roster is not nearly up to speed and our reputation with the younger high school players is one of an also ran. We have not been a real factor during their young lives. We have all these traditions that don't mean anything to them since UT gets its brains beat out everytime they meet a school that is competitive. The signature win for CDD was NC State and their coach got fired at the end of the season! Everytime we have been in a big time game we always find a way to lose. We can't even recruit our own state. Tennessee is recognized as a state with a low number of big time recruits and I guess that is true. The problem is that UT can't even get the big recruits that are from the state. They are picked off by Georgia, Alabama, Auburn, USC...If you look at this years talent most all of the kids are going elsewhere and now Vandy is picking off good ones too. The future is bleak for sure the expectation level should be reset as to how and why a high profile coach could acquired. Realisticly we will need to take a unknown up and coming lower level coach. The only big name that could be a possibility is Bobby Petrino, he is radio active and might be pursueded to take on this house fire. I know that is not popular but I think it is true. I guess that maybe Charlie Strong is still possible and that would be positive, but it is not by any means a lock. Now Gundy is being thrown out there. I ask once again why would he leave his own school where they are supported by the billionaire T Boone Pickens to take this outhouse. Could we get some perspective on here and some since of reality. I don't want to hear about Fisher, Gruden, Gundy, Stoops...absolutely ridiculous!!!!

Al and ND stumbled around for over 10 yrs each. and You put them as the top. Give UT a break, they're slumping , yes they are but they haven't been down near as long as Bama and ND were.

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