Phillip Fulmer had 'the right influences' on way to Hall of Fame

Former coach thanked Osborne, Schembechler

Former Tennessee coach Phillip Fulmer holds his award for being inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame before a game between Alabama and Tennessee in Knoxville on Oct. 20. On Tuesday, Fulmer joined former Miami coach Jimmy Johnson, former Texas A&M coach R.C. Slocum and 14 former players in getting inducted to the National Football Foundation Hall of Fame in New York. "We just had a fabulous time, Fulmer said." (Wade Payne, File/Associated Press)

Photo by Wade Payne

Former Tennessee coach Phillip Fulmer holds his award for being inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame before a game between Alabama and Tennessee in Knoxville on Oct. 20. On Tuesday, Fulmer joined former Miami coach Jimmy Johnson, former Texas A&M coach R.C. Slocum and 14 former players in getting inducted to the National Football Foundation Hall of Fame in New York. "We just had a fabulous time, Fulmer said." (Wade Payne, File/Associated Press)

NEW YORK — Former Tennessee coach Phillip Fulmer was inducted into the National Football Foundation Hall of Fame on Tuesday night, a crowning achievement in a career that spanned the most successful era in modern Tennessee football.

Fulmer was honored along with two other coaches and 14 former players at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in front of hundreds of people from around the football world.

"To get to a place like this, you have to have a pedigree that comes from being around a lot people who are very influential, and I was fortunate to be around the right kind of influences," Fulmer told the News Sentinel before the ceremony.

A delegation from Tennessee, including athletic director Dave Hart and chancellor Jimmy Cheek, were expected to attend the ceremony, although the ongoing search for the Vols' next head coach also was part of their task in New York this week.

Fulmer, who was fired in 2008 after compiling a 152-52 record in 17 seasons, was not a candidate for the Vols' current vacancy, but said he expected Hart to make a good hire.

"I love the University of Tennessee and I want it to do well," Fulmer said. "This is a very important hire. We have built a brand at Tennessee that we lost, but we can get back.

"I think Dave Hart has done it exactly the right way from his press conference and what he said he was looking for. I'm very hopeful that he can fill those goals that he described."

Fulmer and his family arrived in New York on Saturday and were eventually joined by an entourage that included 40 friends, boosters and coaching colleagues, including Doug Dickey, Bill Battle, Steve Caldwell, Dan Brooks and Woody McCorvey. John Chavis and David Cutcliffe, who couldn't make it, called with congratulations.

"We had just a fabulous time," Fulmer said. "It was a whole group of people that had been very helpful in all that we've been able to accomplish."

Fulmer came to Tennessee as a player in 1968 and, aside from short stints at Wichita State and Vanderbilt, spent his entire career with the Vols.

"It's absolutely unique, and it's becoming more unique as time goes on because of the changes in the game ... We were blessed to have so many outstanding coaches and players."

Since being selected as a first-ballot Hall-of-Famer in May, Fulmer said he's had time to reflect on the people who helped him reach the top of the profession. The list is long, and it includes some names you might not expect.

Take legendary Nebraska coach Tom Osborne.

"I went to Wichita State as a 23-year-old line coach. Tom Osborne allowed me to come to Lincoln to be around his program and his practices," Fulmer said. "He was a big influence on me as a coach."

What about Michigan's Bo Schembechler?

"He helped make my decision to get into coaching and stay in coaching," Fulmer said. "I was at a clinic and he was supposed to talk about tackling drills and he started discussing his relationship with players. That had an impact on me."

Fulmer, who grew up in the small town of Winchester, stretched the credit back to his childhood, thanking youth coaches for introducing him to football and coaching the right way.

"I was very fortunate as a little-leaguer to have positive influences that made the game fun, and that affected the way I looked at athletics in general," he said. "High school was the same way."

The two coaches he played for at Tennessee — Dickey and Battle — helped him celebrate the honor in New York. It was Battle who helped nudge Fulmer into the coaching business rather than pursue his original plan of practicing law.

"You look back on the decisions you make in life and think, well, we made some good ones along the way," Fulmer said.

Evan Woodbery covers Tennessee football. Follow him at www.Twitter.com/TennesseeBeat.

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Comments » 51

dsbyrd#287440 writes:

Way to go Coach. Proud of you.

RoyaltyVol writes:

Congrats coach Fulmer and thank you

TNORANGEDOGDAD writes:

Congratulations Coach Fulmer. A true Vol For Life

DLuckySeven writes:

Congrats Coach Fulmer Thanks for the memories.

VFLVFLVFL writes:

Congrats Phil.

Doves writes:

Well done, Coach!

CactusJack writes:

Phil Fulmer did a great job at UT. He was the victim of a downturn in talent and other things that can go wrong in a football program. He got UT its only National Championship in the modern era and had good assistant coaches and players. Congratulations on the award, well deserved!!!!

Caneoverthere writes:

Congrats Coach Fulmer - I will always remember the hour we spent together talking college football and dogs. It was an honor.

wayne.kearney#1414428 writes:

Congrats coach Fulmer. You ready to come back and get the big orange back up off the ground?

rainbow6 writes:

Phillip Fulmer is a gentleman's gentleman. He did things the way they were meant to be done. His success at Tennessee is a story that should be told to every aspiring young coach. His exemplary reputation as a man who believes in honesty, integrity and service is one that any man would be proud of.

iowavol writes:

Always a class act who deserves this award. Wish we had your capabilities at the helm now.

cltvol writes:

This is a tremendous accomplishment and well-deserved. You can't take away such a prestigous award. I have posted about disappointing results in his latter years, but that does not take away his overall achievements and first ballot status for this honor.

utfan36 writes:

mike hamilton needs his @&& kicked for fireing CPF we would not be in this shape ! at least we owned ALA,KY,VANDY,GA,SC,ARK,i rem. when coach Fulmer was just a asst. and i rem.his first game as head coach at UT and they hung nearly 50 points on the board vs CJM conservetive football if they would have gave him some more time he would have got things right! every coach as some bad years he had 2 and was gone! now look at the last 4 years and 2 coaches later and looking for the 3 coach in 4 years!UT was always going bowling and he could beat a ranked team! 152&52 and a NChampionship thats a great record dont think there will ever be a coach at UT to win that much ever again! and im not a fulmer lover but he was a great football coach

BigOrangeRock writes:

Congratulations Coach!

Now come back and coach 5 more years.

Jakevol writes:

Thanks Coach, for all you did. You built the brand strong and kept the Tn. tradition going forward. We are thankful for your leadership and the way you spoke to the public when interviewed. We know your blood will always run Orange. You provided excitment for all of us and made us proud to be a Vol. I wish the best for you and you family. I know you even went to fund raising events all over the state during the off season to help the local areas. The small towns you visited welcomed you. Thanks,

PUL4VOLS writes:

Congratulations and Best Wishes to Coach Philip Fulmer! It is a proud occasion for all on Rocky Top.

skyhawk836 writes:

I watched it stream online last night. Really nice ceremony.
Well deserved honor for Coach Fulmer.

trace5254 writes:

Fulmer is not deserving of this award - some success as a coach but underhanded and not loyal. Fulmer was lucky to be at UT when Bama and Florida were down and he left program in a shambles which paved the way to the Kiffin era.

As a Bama guy, not sorry that the program is in this sorry state but hate to see someone like this in the HoF.

Damitman writes:

Always a "Clsss Act". Thank you Coach Fulmer for all you mean to the University of Tennessee.

laraccoon writes:

in response to trace5254:

Fulmer is not deserving of this award - some success as a coach but underhanded and not loyal. Fulmer was lucky to be at UT when Bama and Florida were down and he left program in a shambles which paved the way to the Kiffin era.

As a Bama guy, not sorry that the program is in this sorry state but hate to see someone like this in the HoF.

it shows your from bama , no class. guess all them poundings he put on the terds would have embarrassed me too . lol

min32926#266113 writes:

Congrats Coach Fulmer! VFL!

WytheVol writes:

Congrats Coach Fulmer! Well deserved!

jt45 writes:

in response to trace5254:

Fulmer is not deserving of this award - some success as a coach but underhanded and not loyal. Fulmer was lucky to be at UT when Bama and Florida were down and he left program in a shambles which paved the way to the Kiffin era.

As a Bama guy, not sorry that the program is in this sorry state but hate to see someone like this in the HoF.

Not Loyal ? Your not too bright are you ? Every program has a down cycle, thats how it goes in sports. Luck has nothing to do with his record.He deserves this award you Mor#%n. Its pathetic your even posting your troll trash here
anyway. I wouldnt stoop that low to trash Saban or any coach who gets that honor. Try showing some class if thats even possible for you.

gobigorange5090 writes:

The honor is well deserved! Best Wishes to you, Coach!

gobigorange5090 writes:

in response to CactusJack:

Phil Fulmer did a great job at UT. He was the victim of a downturn in talent and other things that can go wrong in a football program. He got UT its only National Championship in the modern era and had good assistant coaches and players. Congratulations on the award, well deserved!!!!

Not to take away from your comments at all, but check the Media Guide.....UT was National Champions in 1967 under Doug Dickey. Thank you Coach Fulmer for the NC during your reign!

gobigorange5090 writes:

in response to trace5254:

Fulmer is not deserving of this award - some success as a coach but underhanded and not loyal. Fulmer was lucky to be at UT when Bama and Florida were down and he left program in a shambles which paved the way to the Kiffin era.

As a Bama guy, not sorry that the program is in this sorry state but hate to see someone like this in the HoF.

Dont be a typical Bama horses arse! Saban is kicking Tennessee's arse while Tennessee is down and dont you forget it, Turd!

GOJO writes:

in response to trace5254:

Fulmer is not deserving of this award - some success as a coach but underhanded and not loyal. Fulmer was lucky to be at UT when Bama and Florida were down and he left program in a shambles which paved the way to the Kiffin era.

As a Bama guy, not sorry that the program is in this sorry state but hate to see someone like this in the HoF.

***********************

You are mad because Alabama got caught cheating & you blamed Fulmer. Crawl back in your commode where the tide usually goes to meditate.

billypilgrim78 writes:

in response to jt45:

Not Loyal ? Your not too bright are you ? Every program has a down cycle, thats how it goes in sports. Luck has nothing to do with his record.He deserves this award you Mor#%n. Its pathetic your even posting your troll trash here
anyway. I wouldnt stoop that low to trash Saban or any coach who gets that honor. Try showing some class if thats even possible for you.

No jt45, Phil Fulmer was not loyal. Perhaps you aren't aware of all of his backstabbing of Johnny Majors while Johnny was laid out on the operating table; he lobbied boosters and other power brokers for the head coaching job during that period. This is the kind of loyalty Big Phil demonstrated--even after Johnny spared his job after a crying episode when Johnny was going to fire him for poor performance. Fulmer's actions during that period were completely devoid of class.

And, frankly, Fulmer was not getting the job done, so he was fired. Just as any of us should expect should we not get it done at our jobs. Down cycles are one thing, but going 5-6 because he was too chickens$%t to bring in an offensive coordinator that might upstage him (minus Cutcliffe)--Phil got what he deserved.

cazirkle#615142 writes:

A great man and a great coach. You did a lot for Big Orange Country and your record is the reflection of a winner. I will cherish the picture of you and I that was taken at the Big Orange meeting in Charleston, SC....a lot of programs would die for your program...an award well deserved....it takes a lot of hard work to get into any Hall of Fame...I was elected into my professional organizations Hall of Fame in 2003 and no one can take that away from me....twenty years of hard work and overcoming a lot of negatives and objectives....serving in a leadership role is not an easy task....go Phil...

twicevolalum writes:

in response to billypilgrim78:

No jt45, Phil Fulmer was not loyal. Perhaps you aren't aware of all of his backstabbing of Johnny Majors while Johnny was laid out on the operating table; he lobbied boosters and other power brokers for the head coaching job during that period. This is the kind of loyalty Big Phil demonstrated--even after Johnny spared his job after a crying episode when Johnny was going to fire him for poor performance. Fulmer's actions during that period were completely devoid of class.

And, frankly, Fulmer was not getting the job done, so he was fired. Just as any of us should expect should we not get it done at our jobs. Down cycles are one thing, but going 5-6 because he was too chickens$%t to bring in an offensive coordinator that might upstage him (minus Cutcliffe)--Phil got what he deserved.

I'm so over old old men sitting behind their computers blaming Fulmer for Majors. Just shut up. You're old, your comments are old, and nothing about you or your comments amount to a pile of beans. 1) The current student body has no idea who Johnny Majors is except when they roll him out in his wheelchair. 2) Alumni for the last 16 years have no memories or knowledge of Majors, meaning the only people throwing fits over Majors are at least 50. 3)Exactly how much longer do you think Majors was going to coach since he clearly wasn't coaching during his last season?

Horace writes:

Congratulations Coach Fulmer....a great award bestowed upon you and also Tennessee. An overwhelming majority of Vol fans would welcome you back at the helm....hope Dave Hart would consider extending the invitation.

gold12#1389721 writes:

Thanks for all the great memories coach Fulmer. You deserve to be in the Hall of Fame. I will always have great memories of UT in your era, because you took UT Football to another level in this modern day. I am a big time UT Football fan, and this is coming from a person who grew up in Cincinnati, Ohio. Thank you for taking UT football to another level. The expectations are very high now. They are off the charts. Thanks coach Fulmer!

jt45 writes:

in response to billypilgrim78:

No jt45, Phil Fulmer was not loyal. Perhaps you aren't aware of all of his backstabbing of Johnny Majors while Johnny was laid out on the operating table; he lobbied boosters and other power brokers for the head coaching job during that period. This is the kind of loyalty Big Phil demonstrated--even after Johnny spared his job after a crying episode when Johnny was going to fire him for poor performance. Fulmer's actions during that period were completely devoid of class.

And, frankly, Fulmer was not getting the job done, so he was fired. Just as any of us should expect should we not get it done at our jobs. Down cycles are one thing, but going 5-6 because he was too chickens$%t to bring in an offensive coordinator that might upstage him (minus Cutcliffe)--Phil got what he deserved.

Frankly Im more concerned with the lack of respect for Coach Fulmer during what should be an honorable occasion for ANY coach.Any personal opinions you have towards coach Fulmer has nothing to do with this, but I will say this, if you think coach Fulmer is the only reason Majors was let go then you must have the same type of sources that all these sports writers have who keep feeding the public coaching rumors. Im old enough to understand your sentiments (50s) for majors, with one major difference, boosters do the lobbying not the coaches.

As far as Coach Fulmer getting what he deserved, it seems more like that change Some people wanted did more damage than good. But your entitled to your opinion, although I find it rather amazing you would come to the defense of a Bama troll.

Noogaorange writes:

in response to trace5254:

Fulmer is not deserving of this award - some success as a coach but underhanded and not loyal. Fulmer was lucky to be at UT when Bama and Florida were down and he left program in a shambles which paved the way to the Kiffin era.

As a Bama guy, not sorry that the program is in this sorry state but hate to see someone like this in the HoF.

What you hate is the fact that he owned bama's as- That's what you really hate you idiot bubba! GBO VFL17

leedsvol2007 writes:

in response to gobigorange5090:

Not to take away from your comments at all, but check the Media Guide.....UT was National Champions in 1967 under Doug Dickey. Thank you Coach Fulmer for the NC during your reign!

While it is true that we won the MacArthur National Championship we lost to Oklahoma in the Orange Bowl finishing 9-2 and neither the AP or UPI polls awarded us the National Championship in 1967.

In 1951 we were voted champions in both polls until 1998 our only two major wire service victories. In addition 1998 was first season that Tennessee was undefeated, untied and a bowl champion since 1938.

Fulmer went through a period similar to Bear Bryant at Alabama and Tom Osborne at Nebraska but unfortunately did not survive.

Bryant had down years from 1967 through 1970. He was thinking of leaving to coach the Dolphins in the NFL but was persuaded to stay. He went on to have dazzling success for another decade.

Osborne lost to Oklahoma Nebraska's chief rival 8 consecutive times and if memory serves lost at least 15 consecutive games to top ten teams during the late 80's into the early 90's. And he was under fire for never having won a National Championship.

From 94 through 97 they won 2 national championship and narrowly missed beating Florida State for a 3rd.

Fulmer had a very good recruiting class lined up and was going to changeover to the spread offense with Taj Boyd committed to Tennessee and had a very good defense already on the field.

My bet is we would have been in much better shape today had he been retained.

He is to be congratulated for his success and here is hoping our next coach can get us back on the road to further success.

GoVols!

VOLFORLIFE writes:

in response to twicevolalum:

I'm so over old old men sitting behind their computers blaming Fulmer for Majors. Just shut up. You're old, your comments are old, and nothing about you or your comments amount to a pile of beans. 1) The current student body has no idea who Johnny Majors is except when they roll him out in his wheelchair. 2) Alumni for the last 16 years have no memories or knowledge of Majors, meaning the only people throwing fits over Majors are at least 50. 3)Exactly how much longer do you think Majors was going to coach since he clearly wasn't coaching during his last season?

"Old old men..."? Oh my goodness, you think 50 is old? How old are you, 18 maybe? I guess when I was a teenager, I thought 50 was old too. But guess what, I don't FEEL old most of the time now, and I'm in my mid 60's. I guess age is relative.

But to your other point, I felt it was time for Majors to go, and was glad when Coach Fulmer got the nod. I also wish Coach Fulmer had been given one more year to try to right the ship. He wasn't, and we've paid for it ever since.

Having said that, there's no guarantee he could've turned things around the next year. We'll never know, will we?

Hope my comments weren't too "OLD" for your bright young mind. Sometimes I think folks like you have too high of an opinion of yourself. Maybe you ought to start listening to what some of us "oldsters" have to say occasionally. I know it's hard for you to believe, but you might actually learn something.

GO VOLS!!!
And congratulations, Coach Fulmer!
JUGHEAD

twicevolalum writes:

in response to VOLFORLIFE:

"Old old men..."? Oh my goodness, you think 50 is old? How old are you, 18 maybe? I guess when I was a teenager, I thought 50 was old too. But guess what, I don't FEEL old most of the time now, and I'm in my mid 60's. I guess age is relative.

But to your other point, I felt it was time for Majors to go, and was glad when Coach Fulmer got the nod. I also wish Coach Fulmer had been given one more year to try to right the ship. He wasn't, and we've paid for it ever since.

Having said that, there's no guarantee he could've turned things around the next year. We'll never know, will we?

Hope my comments weren't too "OLD" for your bright young mind. Sometimes I think folks like you have too high of an opinion of yourself. Maybe you ought to start listening to what some of us "oldsters" have to say occasionally. I know it's hard for you to believe, but you might actually learn something.

GO VOLS!!!
And congratulations, Coach Fulmer!
JUGHEAD

I'm a "twicevolalum." Let me translate that for you. I have two degrees from the University of Tennessee. So, if I were 18 I would certainly be exceptional! For your information, I'm in my mid 30s. The entire time I was at UT, continuing to this day, there are always the old men with gruff voices who have accomplished little to nothing in their own lives who want to opine about Johnny Majors. You seem to fit the stereotype very well. I'm over it. How pathetic you must be to make comments about Phillip Fulmer accomplishing nothing and screwing over majors on the day after he was inducted into the hall of fame. So, did me calling you old hit a nerve?

twicevolalum writes:

My point in my post is that people who opine about Majors seem to think it happened, yesterday, last week, last year. Yet, it's become a game to imply or directly state that Coach Fulmer was "past his prime." You men in your 50s who want to relive the Majors days need to realize it's been 20 years since Coach Fulmer became head coach at UT. That means half the students on campus, today, were not even born when Fulmer became coach. It also means you have 16 years of alumni who were never at UT when Majors was coach. The respect you demand of people like me towards Majors, I demand of you towards Fulmer, especially regarding his accolades.

VOLFORLIFE writes:

in response to twicevolalum:

I'm a "twicevolalum." Let me translate that for you. I have two degrees from the University of Tennessee. So, if I were 18 I would certainly be exceptional! For your information, I'm in my mid 30s. The entire time I was at UT, continuing to this day, there are always the old men with gruff voices who have accomplished little to nothing in their own lives who want to opine about Johnny Majors. You seem to fit the stereotype very well. I'm over it. How pathetic you must be to make comments about Phillip Fulmer accomplishing nothing and screwing over majors on the day after he was inducted into the hall of fame. So, did me calling you old hit a nerve?

I saw your screen name and, believe it or not, I knew what it meant. My point, which obviously wasn't made very eloquently, is that some folks look at someone older than themselves and automatically assume that they have nothing of substance to offer because they're "old". Personally, I've never been brazen enough to tell someone to just "shut up" because what they had to say might not jive with my thinking, no matter what the other person's age. But...to each his own.

Congratulations on your two degrees from a great university. Those degrees, however, obviously don't help much with your reading comprehension.

For example, exactly where do you read that I made "...comments about Phillip Fulmer accomplishing nothing and screwing over majors on the day after he was inducted into the hall of fame."? Honestly, I've always been a Phillip Fulmer fan, and I though that showed in my comments.

You think I have "accomplished little to nothing in my own life"? You think I fit your stereotype, huh? I'm "pathetic"? Wow, I'm truly amazed that you can sit behind that keyboard and be as all-knowing as you are, and we've never even met! WOW! Now ain't you just something! And you're only in your 30's? WOW!!

For your information, I'm proud of my age, and I really hope you make it to this age. But I surely hope you don't run up on someone considerably younger than yourself who feels that you're of no value because he's younger and you're "old". That just might hurt your feelings a little bit.

GO VOLS!!!
JUGHEAD

twicevolalum writes:

in response to VOLFORLIFE:

I saw your screen name and, believe it or not, I knew what it meant. My point, which obviously wasn't made very eloquently, is that some folks look at someone older than themselves and automatically assume that they have nothing of substance to offer because they're "old". Personally, I've never been brazen enough to tell someone to just "shut up" because what they had to say might not jive with my thinking, no matter what the other person's age. But...to each his own.

Congratulations on your two degrees from a great university. Those degrees, however, obviously don't help much with your reading comprehension.

For example, exactly where do you read that I made "...comments about Phillip Fulmer accomplishing nothing and screwing over majors on the day after he was inducted into the hall of fame."? Honestly, I've always been a Phillip Fulmer fan, and I though that showed in my comments.

You think I have "accomplished little to nothing in my own life"? You think I fit your stereotype, huh? I'm "pathetic"? Wow, I'm truly amazed that you can sit behind that keyboard and be as all-knowing as you are, and we've never even met! WOW! Now ain't you just something! And you're only in your 30's? WOW!!

For your information, I'm proud of my age, and I really hope you make it to this age. But I surely hope you don't run up on someone considerably younger than yourself who feels that you're of no value because he's younger and you're "old". That just might hurt your feelings a little bit.

GO VOLS!!!
JUGHEAD

You certainly took exception to the reply that I made to a person who made a point to comment about Coach Fulmer backstabbing Johnny Majors. So, my wise old friend, given the context I would certainly say that I had every right to address the entire context of this conversation. I think you need to brush up on comprehensive understanding of interactions! I actually don't think 50 is old, in general. But, I do think the people who come on an article like this and want to talk about screwing over Johnny Majors certainly are out of touch of the current reality! So, is that you? Maybe so. You seemed to put on the shoe, above.

texasvolunteer1973 writes:

Bring him back!! He's better than anyone on our current list.... Hindsight is 20/20, but NO WAY the last 4 years would have been this bad had he stayed our HC.

JBruce writes:

Congrats Coach Fulmer! Wished you were still at the helm today.

JBruce writes:

Bring Fulmer back as head coach as long as he agrees to have Jim Chaney as his OC. A bad hire at OC was the only reason he got fired in the first place.

tovolny writes:

KNS, John Adams, and the leading sportswriters from the major news agencies across the state destroyed Coach Fulmer. The lull, caused by new offenses popping up across the college football scene directly and indirectly affected the quality of recruits seeking to play the type football that Tennessee was playing at the time. Hamilton was a nerd trying to run the Athletic Department and seemed to snap at all the lures cast by John Adams and the other pseudo football experts trying to make themselves important. We had irate fans posting that Chavis should be sent packing. I know, I myself posted about the failure of Chavis to stop a 3rd and (more than) 15. It did seem like Florida could be stopped at 3rd and 3 but not 3rd and 15. I was out of line and should have not made that post.

I would like for Coach Fulmer to know that I have lots of respect for him and I hold him in high regard. I accused him of losing interest in coaching and I accused him of slacking off on recruiting, which was probably not the case.

I still think John Adams went too far in the Fulmer ouster. I went too far. UT fans went too far. Now we stand as a humble and defeated mass, but we are determined to rise again, and we will rise again. Now we are in a down-turn, but history will show that we constantly proliferate with a positive slope.

Lets all try to be better fans and try to look at the whole picture and not show up with a lynch mob mentality when our new coaches are struggling to get the Big Orange Express back on its tracks.

Go Vols(!!!).

billypilgrim78 writes:

in response to twicevolalum:

You certainly took exception to the reply that I made to a person who made a point to comment about Coach Fulmer backstabbing Johnny Majors. So, my wise old friend, given the context I would certainly say that I had every right to address the entire context of this conversation. I think you need to brush up on comprehensive understanding of interactions! I actually don't think 50 is old, in general. But, I do think the people who come on an article like this and want to talk about screwing over Johnny Majors certainly are out of touch of the current reality! So, is that you? Maybe so. You seemed to put on the shoe, above.

twicevolalum, I want to say I've really enjoyed reading your posts. They have been pretty entertaining--mostly the conclusions you are jumping to, while ripping this other guy up about not grasping the "entire context" of this conversation.

I'm not sure why you assume I'm old. Perhaps, you notice my screen name ends in 78, a good indicator this could be the year I was born. This would put me graduating in the year 2000 and, interestingly, make me pretty much your age. Granted, I grew up in Knoxville, and maybe have longer exposure to the school and program as a fan relative to my age than some grads. But you couldn't have known that, so I give you a pass.

As far as context, well, this part is awesome. I only brought up the Johnny Majors thing in context of the previous comments about Fulmer's loyalty--by a Bama fan or not. You clearly took it as some random "old guy" diatribe about the fall of Majors. I, for one, wasn't even aware outrage over that incident still existed. Indeed, I actually think Majors kind of got what he deserved, as well. It is just unfortunate he had to get run out of town by a guy he actually had shown loyalty to previously. But the offense had grown awful in Major's last years and that was what really did him in. It is interesting that this was Fulmer's demise, as well. I wonder what the connection is?

But to your point, I didn't mean to come in here and disparage Fulmer on his induction. He was a good program manager and great recruiter, both personally and by building a staff who could recruit like crazy. He was a great head coach in the same sense that Eisenhower was a great general. Neither will be known as the greatest strategists in their respective fields, but both one the big one. That's all that matters.

So settle down Esmerelda. Go back and read things before you take them out of context and make ridiculous assumptions about people.

ncvol17 writes:

in response to twicevolalum:

My point in my post is that people who opine about Majors seem to think it happened, yesterday, last week, last year. Yet, it's become a game to imply or directly state that Coach Fulmer was "past his prime." You men in your 50s who want to relive the Majors days need to realize it's been 20 years since Coach Fulmer became head coach at UT. That means half the students on campus, today, were not even born when Fulmer became coach. It also means you have 16 years of alumni who were never at UT when Majors was coach. The respect you demand of people like me towards Majors, I demand of you towards Fulmer, especially regarding his accolades.

You are right on target. These old duffers reliving the past. UT had a Nat'l Championship 14 years ago, let it go. There is a whole generation who were not born or too young to remember we went 13-0 and won the 1st BCS championship. How long are these oldies going to hang on and remember it? And that is not speaking of the crypt keepers who can remember that ancient history of the 51 championship. There is no true history b4 2000 or so, let's get real.

volman91 writes:

COACH we need you now more than ever!!!!!
No one will ever love UT more than a true Vol.
Fulmer,Martin,Sanders,Wilson Etc....
BRING in some ORANGE BLOOD to right the ship!
VFL

Pistolpete13579 writes:

Al. Fans hate his guts. Makes him a great candidate to me!
Not a candidate we have looked at has his resume, including Gruden (can't believe some thought Gruden would actually come).
I thought it was time for Phil to go......I was wrong. None of these Jacklegs we have spoken with are serious, just pimping their AD's
Phil been classy even when UT wasn't . He deserves another shot if he wants it.

gobigorange5090 writes:

in response to billypilgrim78:

No jt45, Phil Fulmer was not loyal. Perhaps you aren't aware of all of his backstabbing of Johnny Majors while Johnny was laid out on the operating table; he lobbied boosters and other power brokers for the head coaching job during that period. This is the kind of loyalty Big Phil demonstrated--even after Johnny spared his job after a crying episode when Johnny was going to fire him for poor performance. Fulmer's actions during that period were completely devoid of class.

And, frankly, Fulmer was not getting the job done, so he was fired. Just as any of us should expect should we not get it done at our jobs. Down cycles are one thing, but going 5-6 because he was too chickens$%t to bring in an offensive coordinator that might upstage him (minus Cutcliffe)--Phil got what he deserved.

Either show us PROOF that Fulmer backstabbed Majors or SHUT UP!

gobigorange5090 writes:

in response to leedsvol2007:

While it is true that we won the MacArthur National Championship we lost to Oklahoma in the Orange Bowl finishing 9-2 and neither the AP or UPI polls awarded us the National Championship in 1967.

In 1951 we were voted champions in both polls until 1998 our only two major wire service victories. In addition 1998 was first season that Tennessee was undefeated, untied and a bowl champion since 1938.

Fulmer went through a period similar to Bear Bryant at Alabama and Tom Osborne at Nebraska but unfortunately did not survive.

Bryant had down years from 1967 through 1970. He was thinking of leaving to coach the Dolphins in the NFL but was persuaded to stay. He went on to have dazzling success for another decade.

Osborne lost to Oklahoma Nebraska's chief rival 8 consecutive times and if memory serves lost at least 15 consecutive games to top ten teams during the late 80's into the early 90's. And he was under fire for never having won a National Championship.

From 94 through 97 they won 2 national championship and narrowly missed beating Florida State for a 3rd.

Fulmer had a very good recruiting class lined up and was going to changeover to the spread offense with Taj Boyd committed to Tennessee and had a very good defense already on the field.

My bet is we would have been in much better shape today had he been retained.

He is to be congratulated for his success and here is hoping our next coach can get us back on the road to further success.

GoVols!

The NCAA counts that championship. Alabama has several of those and they add those in their total numbers.

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