Tennessee AD Dave Hart says Butch Jones offers 'new beginning' for program

Hart says new coach had busy week

Tennessee athletic director Dave Hart, right, gives a helmet to new football head coach Butch Jones, left, during a news conference introducing Jones in the Peyton Manning Locker Room Complex at Neyland Stadium Friday, Dec. 7, 2012. (ADAM BRIMER/NEWS SENTINEL)

Photo by Adam Brimer, Knoxville News Sentinel

Tennessee athletic director Dave Hart, right, gives a helmet to new football head coach Butch Jones, left, during a news conference introducing Jones in the Peyton Manning Locker Room Complex at Neyland Stadium Friday, Dec. 7, 2012. (ADAM BRIMER/NEWS SENTINEL)

As new Tennessee coach Butch Jones took to the airports, interstates and back roads of the Southeast this week in an effort to visit as many prospects as possible before a looming NCAA dead period, he carried with him a list of names and phone numbers.

His goal: Call trustees, boosters and big supporters to introduce himself.

"He just wanted to reach out and say hello," said Tennessee athletic director Dave Hart said Thursday.

Hart said the whirlwind first week has convinced him that Jones really understands the magnitude of his new job and how it transcends the football field.

"The football coach, whether we like it or not and whether he likes it or not, is the face not only of the athletic program, he's the face of the university," Hart said.

Hart spoke to the News Sentinel for about an hour Thursday in his office on the top floor of the Lawson Center on campus. An extended Q&A from the interview will appear in Sunday's newspaper.

Hart said everybody from secretaries to senior administrators have been impressed with Jones' sincerity and willingness to learn their names and strike up conversations.

"He has an approach that's very genuine," Hart said. "It's coming through, and it's been very well received."

Before the search, Hart spoke candidly about the challenges the football program faces as it works to return to the upper tier of the SEC. He said he was frank about those challenges with Jones, but assured him there was a plan in place to "take the weaknesses and make them strengths."

"I know that people don't want to hear this, but just because we made a coaching change doesn't mean we're going stream-roll everybody on our schedule," Hart said. "What it does mean is we have a new beginning. We have a very enthusiastic head coach and staff who want to put their arms around this thing and tackle it.

"And it means we have to help them. We can't give this coach the same short stick that Derek (Dooley) was handed. We can't do that, and we won't do that."

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

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Comments » 65

orangecountyvols writes:

Vols,

Does the 'new beginning' also suggest the extreme uniform change which was posted on facebook by the Vol elite? Have you seen what the helmet is supposed to look like?

Oregon/Maryland lookalike, etc? Sure as heck hope not. If so, there goes the tradition.

vol64 writes:

Wonder what he was implying re: not giving this coach a short stick like Derek Dooley was handed?

underthehill writes:

in response to vol64:

Wonder what he was implying re: not giving this coach a short stick like Derek Dooley was handed?

I think part of that short stick was Hart hiring Sunseri..

PUL4VOLS writes:

The short stick really translated is: when the team struggles at times next year and the nega-Vol trollnation shows up wanting Jones' head, Hart will just not listen. That includes the second year too. Coach Jones will be given some time but I am hoping we see big evidences of positive steps forward immediately. What happened in the past, is past. We need to embrace a new beginning and go from here supportive of the team we love.

GiveHim6TDTennessee writes:

in response to orangecountyvols:

Vols,

Does the 'new beginning' also suggest the extreme uniform change which was posted on facebook by the Vol elite? Have you seen what the helmet is supposed to look like?

Oregon/Maryland lookalike, etc? Sure as heck hope not. If so, there goes the tradition.

If you think we're going to change our look, you're crazy. I wouldn't mind some alternative looks, though. The academic UT logo with the state forming parts of the UT and the State of Tennessee Tri Star on the helmet would be sick.

Enki_Amenra writes:

Tennessee Volunteers will NEVER change their uniform - as evidenced in the struggle to wear the black jerseys on Halloween. That was very close to not happening.

The only change we might ever see would be the incorporation of another, not so well-known school color. It was worn in only a handful of years, long ago. It was blue.

There have been discussions about the design of a 'phantasm' uniform that would be worn in only 1 home game per season. It is a very dramatic design and, in my opinion, looks better than any other 'combat' designs I've seen in college football. Even better than the Oregon Uniforms I've seen (admittedly, I haven't seen all their uniforms, it's unlikely anyone has, lol)

Ideas for an all orange helmet, with a white 'Power-T' have been talked about, as have ideas for a blue helmet, jersey, pants, Orange 'Power-T' on the helmet, with two white stripes flanking an orange strip down the middle. The jersey, pants, and tights would have similar orange and white inclusions.

They look incredible, but they will probably never make it onto the field... unless it is an anniversary type of deal... otherwise, Tennessee tradition will not allow the change.

yabadabadoo1026 writes:

in response to vol64:

Wonder what he was implying re: not giving this coach a short stick like Derek Dooley was handed?

means we cant keep piling on buyouts on top of buyouts on top of buyouts--you cant keep layering buyouts and then have $$ to spend for big name coach replacements this fan base demands----Tenn folks are going to have to for a change show patience and accept steady year over year improvement over his contract rather than expect overnite turnaround though we would happily love that---- the whinners need to get behind this guy, give him the benefit of any doubts for now and lose the constant negativity---IMO the overall best hire of the SE area incl Ohio

Enki_Amenra writes:

http://loserswithsocks.com/pics-helme...

is this the new helmet you are referencing?

Enki_Amenra writes:

Just for kicks, have a look at this all black UT Volunters helmet, with a glossy black Power-T and a flat black base.

http://www.lostlettermen.com/vols-to-...

voodoo101 writes:

There are pictures of the helmet here

http://bleacherreport.com/tb/d99Gl?ut...

The red Riddell clashes with the orange. Unless the makers pay teams to use their equipment the manufacturer's logos should be removed. No sense in uniforms bearing sponsor logos and looking like they belong in NASCAR.

VFL_Troll_Patrol writes:

A new beginning! Yes it is! The 2012 season wasn't great but we can still look back at some of the moments that took our breath away! A new leader, new attitude and a hopeful future! GBO

This video showcases all the good moments from the 2012 season, with head coach Butch Jones. Let me know what you guys think by visiting my youtube channel.

VIDEO: "A New Leader" A look at the past with the "Butcher" Butch Jones (2012 season)

LINK: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a4xteY...

*Im always watching*
Here's to a brighter future

nocleats writes:

in response to vol64:

Wonder what he was implying re: not giving this coach a short stick like Derek Dooley was handed?

It means allowing him the same Academic and Administrative qualifications that the rest of the SEC has. It means Cheek and his minions have to get with the plan and not just identify and look into these problems but FIX THEM!

voodoo101 writes:

in response to nocleats:

It means allowing him the same Academic and Administrative qualifications that the rest of the SEC has. It means Cheek and his minions have to get with the plan and not just identify and look into these problems but FIX THEM!

Surely you can't mean that athletes would have to meet entrance qualifications like other students, actually go to class, and that kind of stuff. Is this a school or what?

BIVOLAR_BEARE writes:

in response to orangecountyvols:

Vols,

Does the 'new beginning' also suggest the extreme uniform change which was posted on facebook by the Vol elite? Have you seen what the helmet is supposed to look like?

Oregon/Maryland lookalike, etc? Sure as heck hope not. If so, there goes the tradition.

I'm with you on that OCV..Changing the uniforms to this retro cr@p ruins it for me..I hope they don't sell their tradition for the glitz simply to appease some recruits.

yabadabadoo1026 writes:

in response to Enki_Amenra:

Just for kicks, have a look at this all black UT Volunters helmet, with a glossy black Power-T and a flat black base.

http://www.lostlettermen.com/vols-to-...

that cant be serious----has to be someones idea of a realllllll bad joke

voodoo101 writes:

in response to BIVOLAR_BEARE:

I'm with you on that OCV..Changing the uniforms to this retro cr@p ruins it for me..I hope they don't sell their tradition for the glitz simply to appease some recruits.

I'm definitely with you on that. Keep it traditional. And if offensive linemen aren't required to wear something like boxing gloves then defenders should be allowed tear aways. Then like the old M&Ms commercial - it's easy to see what hands have the evidence.

rb4346 writes:

in response to PUL4VOLS:

The short stick really translated is: when the team struggles at times next year and the nega-Vol trollnation shows up wanting Jones' head, Hart will just not listen. That includes the second year too. Coach Jones will be given some time but I am hoping we see big evidences of positive steps forward immediately. What happened in the past, is past. We need to embrace a new beginning and go from here supportive of the team we love.

Agree with you completely, very good analaysis of the situation!

BIVOLAR_BEARE writes:

in response to voodoo101:

I'm definitely with you on that. Keep it traditional. And if offensive linemen aren't required to wear something like boxing gloves then defenders should be allowed tear aways. Then like the old M&Ms commercial - it's easy to see what hands have the evidence.

I hear ya..I used to have a bunch of those tear-away jerseys (Stanley Morgan and Condrege Holloway)..Those were the days..GBO!!

Enki_Amenra writes:

in response to yabadabadoo1026:

that cant be serious----has to be someones idea of a realllllll bad joke

Haha, it could be a joke, or... you know the ESPN commercials, where the mascots are just hanging out around the office, or NASCAR drivers are walking around in their speed suits?

Well, I guess this comes from when a Tennessee Football player gets cast in the role of Darth Vader, in a Star Wars play.

I might change the uniforms, but not much at all.. I might make the stripes on the pants a little thinner, but no major changes... outline the helmet T with a thin white line and then a thin orange line, but probably not... I'm not sure if I'd like to see one of the new era fashion uniforms worn once a year, or if I'd like to see them stay firmly within the bounds of Tennessee uniform tradition

orange_eVOLution writes:

in response to GiveHim6TDTennessee:

If you think we're going to change our look, you're crazy. I wouldn't mind some alternative looks, though. The academic UT logo with the state forming parts of the UT and the State of Tennessee Tri Star on the helmet would be sick.

Like an orange helmet with a white Power T might look cool. And a checkerboard stripe down the middle of the helmet might work as well. I don't want to do Oregon Ducks or Virginia Tech stuff (with ten different helmets and uniforms). But tweaking our helmet a little could be cool.

rockytopwestone writes:

A few weeks ago a friend showed me a picture of a glossy black helmet with a orange power T outlined in white. I`m all for tradition but that thing looked cool !

orangecountyvols writes:

in response to Enki_Amenra:

http://loserswithsocks.com/pics-helme...

is this the new helmet you are referencing?

Enki, and fellow Vol fans,

Yes, that's it. Note the orange face mask also.

I just like what we've had for so long myself. Actually, remember a few years ago they went back to the narrow stripe on the helmet. There was one year Tennessee went with 2 stripes on the helmet. Wasn't it Majors who changed the look to the wider stripe on the helmet?

Note: Alabama has actually used the very same look for years. Do you recall when however, they went with white helmets, not that we ever want to believe they set the standard to go by.

Oh well, we'll always have a lot of differing opinions, but I believe most of us want to stick with the traditional look we've enjoyed for a long time.

JonGrudensAgent writes:

"The football coach, whether we like it or not and whether he likes it or not, is the face not only of the athletic program, he's the face of the university," Hart said.

Thankfully, this is true because, let's face it, Hart and Cheek aren't exactly cover models.

orangecountyvols writes:

Vols,

Hope everyone has a great day, and continued thoughts for all those who suffered at the school in CT.

One final thought on the helmet thing. UVA actually wore 3 different helmets this past season...........orange, blue, and white. So much for the gimmick thing.

The Cavaliers finished 4-8.

dk writes:

When Oregon first changed their uniforms a few years ago, I thought that they were gaudy. I still don't like a couple of their combos, but some of the unis actually look cool.

I may be old, but I'm not an old fogey who wants everything to stay the same throughout time. I don't care about "tradition" if "tradition" is holding UT back.

Vol_in_Mich writes:

in response to orangecountyvols:

Vols,

Does the 'new beginning' also suggest the extreme uniform change which was posted on facebook by the Vol elite? Have you seen what the helmet is supposed to look like?

Oregon/Maryland lookalike, etc? Sure as heck hope not. If so, there goes the tradition.

Say it's not true, please. Oregon's hurt my eyes, Maryland's were just strange & confusing & how about Mo. just butt ugly. Why not paint the field blue, orange, pink or some god awful color.
I kinda liked the black jerseys on Halloween. Let's use them again, next time the Vols play on Halloween. Otherwise keep the Dreamsicle orange & white.

Give em heII butch

Sir_Spanky writes:

in response to JonGrudensAgent:

"The football coach, whether we like it or not and whether he likes it or not, is the face not only of the athletic program, he's the face of the university," Hart said.

Thankfully, this is true because, let's face it, Hart and Cheek aren't exactly cover models.

Your observation would be correct because what that pair amounts to is Frankenstein and Howard Cosell's ugly cousin.

Butchz1stBornVol writes:

Some change isn't always bad...I tell u I sure enjoy riding in a car instead of the horse n buggy or a bike(latter refers 2 China) :-)

PHAT_VOL writes:

Wake me up when Coach Jones has a positive accomplishment. Like a top twelve recruiting class.

BIVOLAR_BEARE writes:

in response to PHAT_VOL:

Wake me up when Coach Jones has a positive accomplishment. Like a top twelve recruiting class.

I think most Vol fans would prefer for you to continue sleeping (like Rip Van-Winkle)..Nightie night.

underthehill writes:

in response to Sir_Spanky:

Your observation would be correct because what that pair amounts to is Frankenstein and Howard Cosell's ugly cousin.

Is it time for a poll..which is worse..their appearance or decisions..

td writes:

in response to VFL_Troll_Patrol:

A new beginning! Yes it is! The 2012 season wasn't great but we can still look back at some of the moments that took our breath away! A new leader, new attitude and a hopeful future! GBO

This video showcases all the good moments from the 2012 season, with head coach Butch Jones. Let me know what you guys think by visiting my youtube channel.

VIDEO: "A New Leader" A look at the past with the "Butcher" Butch Jones (2012 season)

LINK: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a4xteY...

*Im always watching*
Here's to a brighter future

Absolutely one of the best "promo" videos I've ever seen! Above and beyond the call of duty!!! For those of you who didn't take the time to view it, you've missed something special (go back; you will not waste your time). We just need to get recruits to see this video.

underthehill writes:

in response to dk:

When Oregon first changed their uniforms a few years ago, I thought that they were gaudy. I still don't like a couple of their combos, but some of the unis actually look cool.

I may be old, but I'm not an old fogey who wants everything to stay the same throughout time. I don't care about "tradition" if "tradition" is holding UT back.

It appears to me..tradition..is the main thing putting fans in the stands..it don't seem to be the product on the field..I'm not saying tradition wins games..cause it don't..but not many..if any..fans would buy 89,000 plus..season tickets to see the way UT is playing..tradition is not holding UT back..

pcorange writes:

in response to voodoo101:

Surely you can't mean that athletes would have to meet entrance qualifications like other students, actually go to class, and that kind of stuff. Is this a school or what?

Look, the players who are using the football scholarship as a means to an education are going to go to class, you won't have to worry about them. The kids from the bad neighborhoods with 4* and 5* talent but not a lot of book sense are using this as a stepping stone to the NFL. If Alabama will admit those kids but Tennessee won't, that puts us at a competitive disadvantage in recruiting. We sure don't need any recruiting disadvantages.

pcorange writes:

As for the uniform debate, I like traditional, but tweaking the unis and helmets a little bit to make them "cool" looking won't hurt anything and it excites players and recruits. I kinda like the checkerboard stripe on the helmet. We need to stay orange, but there are a lot of cool things you can do with UT orange. Heck, UT orange is the most awesome color there is! I would like to see us go away from Adidas uniforms to Nike.

orangehippi writes:

in response to Enki_Amenra:

http://loserswithsocks.com/pics-helme...

is this the new helmet you are referencing?

Looks good hootervillian

orangehippi writes:

in response to Enki_Amenra:

Just for kicks, have a look at this all black UT Volunters helmet, with a glossy black Power-T and a flat black base.

http://www.lostlettermen.com/vols-to-...

maybe one game with camoes

orangehippi writes:

i do like the checkerboard stripe,but i believe we use schutt helmets,and this guys highschool uses riddell helmets,but it is a good look,what.s great about tradiution it does change from time to time.look at our logos from the fifties till now.

voodoo101 writes:

in response to pcorange:

As for the uniform debate, I like traditional, but tweaking the unis and helmets a little bit to make them "cool" looking won't hurt anything and it excites players and recruits. I kinda like the checkerboard stripe on the helmet. We need to stay orange, but there are a lot of cool things you can do with UT orange. Heck, UT orange is the most awesome color there is! I would like to see us go away from Adidas uniforms to Nike.

A long, long time ago McGhee-Tyson was a true Air Force base with two fighter squadrons - F-86Ds. The squadron that my dad flew with had red and white checkerboard down the middle of the helmet - like the orange and white in the picture but wider. Somehow it looked a little better on a flight helmet, but I could get used to the orange and white on a football helmet.

Govols1995 writes:

in response to orangecountyvols:

Vols,

Does the 'new beginning' also suggest the extreme uniform change which was posted on facebook by the Vol elite? Have you seen what the helmet is supposed to look like?

Oregon/Maryland lookalike, etc? Sure as heck hope not. If so, there goes the tradition.

I'm sick of people talking about tradition! Losing is not our tradition either! Those uniforms are awesome, and change is definently needed!

voodoo101 writes:

in response to Razzle:

How bout this...

http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o3...

No way, and yellow/gold isn't orange.

Razzle writes:

in response to voodoo101:

No way, and yellow/gold isn't orange.

I know right? Tennessee orange is orange 151.

voodoo101 writes:

in response to Razzle:

I know right? Tennessee orange is orange 151.

Yep. According to the UT policy.

"PMS 151 is the official orange of the University of Tennessee and UT Knoxville. The UT icon logo should be rendered only in PMS 151, or in black or in white as a reverse from a color background."

OrangeBloodFlood writes:

I don't care what they wear as long as we return to smash mouth football.After listening to BJ I am optimistic that he understands what it takes to win in the SEC,whether he can produce it only time will tell. Go Vols !

Olddogsrule writes:

As far as uniforms go ... It's not about me or the fans (except that the orange HAS TO BE Volunteer Orange correct Pantone color. Anyone else notice the very poor color match of the majorettes new uniforms this season? Seems Dooley had a little trouble gettin' the hue and color depth of his pants right-which I for one, liked, by the way-. But he did take the time and effort to get it right, unlike the person who selected the majorettes uniforms....Anyway, it's about what the kids feel when they put the uniform on. Orange and White with Black here and there. Tradition is one thing, we all like tradition and I'd like to see the old uniforms for a few games, but I don't mind at all if the kids feel a lot of swagger running through the T in modern gear. Have at it, .. let the team pick their look.. after all, it's all about them and not us!

tdvol1989 writes:

in response to vol64:

Wonder what he was implying re: not giving this coach a short stick like Derek Dooley was handed?

Don't get confused by this. It doesn't mean Jones will not be held accountable. Our football program had some disadvantages that made it harder for Dooley.

You have heard before that there are instances when we couldn't get help with admissions. Eddrick Loften comes to mind.

Dooley was limited on contracts for assistants. With his job on the line needing a new DC, he was only able to offer a 2yr deal.

There are issues with academic support for athletes which affects recruiting.

But, let's clarify. Dooley would have failed any way. He was stubborn and didn't know how to play the game with fans and the admin. He totally mismanaged the Baggett/Rogers issue and ran off assistants, one way or the other. But, had he been a better coach, he did have some obstacles like the ones I mentioned. Hart is basically saying that everything possible will be done or fixed to help Butch.

LAVol11 writes:

So what do reasonable expectations look like for the Vols in the future?

2013 = finish above .500 and reach bowl
2014 = finish above .660 and surprise at least 1 favored opponent
2015 = finish at least .750 and compete for SEC East

tdvol1989 writes:

in response to Razzle:

How bout this...

http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o3...

Just please get rid of the striped pants. I will be happy. I wonder if Butch would catch heat for the black since Cincy had black. First game we lost, somebody would call us the Volcats or Cincinnati South.

tdvol1989 writes:

in response to LAVol11:

So what do reasonable expectations look like for the Vols in the future?

2013 = finish above .500 and reach bowl
2014 = finish above .660 and surprise at least 1 favored opponent
2015 = finish at least .750 and compete for SEC East

This is where the Dooley supporters went off the reservation in his final days. It wasn't about not winning the SEC. We were not progressing on the field or in Recruiting. The key is improvement. CBJ could get away with a losing season year 1, but it will be uphill if does. He will lose fan support and likely become bitter even if he gets back on track.

He really needs a bowl game year 1. 6-6 Regular Season with a bowl win is reasonable and will prevent an assault on him. He also needs to be more competitive in losses. As he ends the year, he must have a Top 20, preferably Top 15 Recruiting Class. CBJ has never been at a school that studies recruiting rankings and Diamonds in the Rough that produce in year 3 won't be good enough.

After that, he needs to pickup 1 win a year. Yes, at that rate, it will take 4 or 5 yrs to contend, but as long as he improves, 7 wins, 8 wins, 9 wins, etc., he won't get the negative avalanche. But he must improve each year in Wins AND Recruiting. Without Recruiting, fans are not going to believe in next year being better.

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