Tennessee coach Derek Dooley stepping into bigger role in struggling defense

Coach says 'a lot of changes' will be made

Tennessee head coach Derek Dooley watches play against Troy at Neyland Stadium, Saturday, Nov. 3, 2012. Tennessee defeated Troy 55-48. (AMY SMOTHERMAN BURGESS/NEWS SENTINEL)

Photo by Amy Smotherman Burgess

Tennessee head coach Derek Dooley watches play against Troy at Neyland Stadium, Saturday, Nov. 3, 2012. Tennessee defeated Troy 55-48. (AMY SMOTHERMAN BURGESS/NEWS SENTINEL)

Dooley taking active role in defense

Stung by an embarrassing performance Saturday against Troy, Tennessee football coach Derek Dooley has vowed to take a more active role in supervising the defense this week.

"I'm coming out of the offensive room and putting all my attention on defense," Dooley said Monday during his weekly news conference.

Tennessee allowed 721 yards of total offense to the Trojans in a 55-48 victory. The Vols (4-5, 0-5 SEC) finish the season with three consecutive SEC opponents, starting with Missouri (4-5, 1-5) on Saturday (TV: WVLT, 12:21 p.m.) at Neyland Stadium.

Dooley cautioned that there are no simple fixes for Tennessee's defense, which is ranked 112th of 120 Football Bowl Subdivision teams (115th against the pass and 90th against the run). But he said there would be changes both in game-planning and game-day management.

Embattled defensive coordinator Sal Sunseri might move to the press box to coach. Other coaches will be encouraged to contribute to the game plan.

"There's going to be a lot more input from everybody on what we need to do, and we'll do some different things on game day with how we implement it," Dooley said. "We're going to make a lot of changes, but there are no easy answers when you are playing the way we're playing."

Why is Dooley becoming more involved now, in Week 9 of a season in which the defense has gotten progressively worse? That's a fair question, Dooley admitted.

"It probably would have been reactionary if I had done it four weeks ago. But then you look back and maybe I should have," he said. "I'm not here saying I'm a guru. I'm not ... It's just another eye and another set of ears and another voice. It'll give me a little more comfort in saying, 'I don't want that.' "

Asked about the criticism directed toward Sunseri, the Vols' first-year coordinator, Dooley trotted out a reference to Bruce Hornsby's 1986 hit, "The Way It Is."

"When you're in this position you are going to get criticized when you don't get results," Dooley said. "It doesn't have anything to do with what's fair or right, it's just the way it is. Like Bruce Hornsby and the Range, that's just the way it is."

Tennessee's defense was ranked 28th in the nation in 2011 under coordinator Justin Wilcox, who left after the season for Washington. The Vols haven't approached that success under Sunseri.

Some of the struggles stem from Dooley's decision to use an up-tempo offense this season.

"The reality is if we were playing our offense the way we played last year, (Troy) wouldn't have 700 yards. They would have had 75 plays instead of 100," Dooley said. "I was prepared when we went to this (up-tempo offense) that we weren't going to be as good on defense."

Still, Dooley said he knows even that partial explanation is unsatisfying.

"You are what your bubble gum card is," said Dooley, referring to the statistics on the back of sports cards. "Where are we on the bubble gum card? The stats are what we are right now. Do I think we're better than that? Of course I do. But we're not playing like it, so we're not."

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

Get Copyright Permissions © 2012, Knoxville News Sentinel Co.
Want to use this article? Click here for options!

© 2012 govolsxtra.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

  • Discuss
  • Print

Related Topics

Comments » 145

Southland writes:

the first thing he should have done is fired sal sometime Sunday and made a janitor his DC.. I believe you could let guys line up anyway they want on the field and could stop more big plays than they are now without a drop of coaching involved

maciste54 writes:

112th out of 120 ????? Trying to let that sink in and keep my mouth closed and my credulity intact !

N2TheVOLS writes:

Guys. This can't be anything but charma. I went to UTSports.com to get the November football background for my computer and it has a picture of one of our defensive guys. The great part about it is that it is on the "Lady Volunteers" background. Check it out. Maybe Dooley can start with getting that fixed.....

jobrando#216494 writes:

in response to maciste54:

112th out of 120 ????? Trying to let that sink in and keep my mouth closed and my credulity intact !

It's amazing how folks that are still grabbing at straws just want to acknowledge the 23 or so ranking in offense. Like they dont want to accept it's a team effort. Defenses win and lose games. It's an amazing state of our football program. I'm afraid they will give him an extension. Folks want change then all that is left is to boycott Neyland.

Prostar writes:

One of the first things he can do is teach his coaches to count to 11 (as in the number of players they are supposed to put on the field). This is what his 32nd game and we line up defensively with 10 players, then have to call time out because we have 12 on the field. Total, total lack of discipline and awareness. You have to anticipate when you are on defense. Be one play ahead of your competition and anticipate what is coming next. Our coaches seem to be reactionary. I see very little progress overall and find it increasingly hard to support CDD. I'm leaning in the direction of those that want a fresh start. I doubt Gruden is coming to UT and I don't know that he is the answer anyway. What I do know is that someone needs to come rescue us from this terrible nightmare we're living.

Jesse_VFL writes:

2011 - 28th ranked defense.
2012 - 112th ranked defense.

Wow, just unbelievable. Sal should not be in the booth, he should be on a bus. So, DD thinks a reason is the uptempo offense but yet he sticks with that. This uptempo keeps UT from being able to control the clock and management of the game and keeps opposing offenses on the field against our 112th ranked defense which tires them out since they are back on field so much. If he see's that as a problem then you would think he would adjust that. I for one, feel uneasy about the next two games but hope like heck the Vols can win out the rest and end with some solid improvement and confidence.

jbc writes:

1 Alabama
5 Georgia
6 Florida
8 South Carolina
21 Mississippi State

http://www.bcsfootball.org/

woodcutter writes:

It is just a matter of time. Fire the whole staff this or next. No more sell-outs......

john316 writes:

We would be better off doing onside kicks everytime.

Orange_Power_T writes:

This is positively the worst defense I have ever seen TN put onto a field. Linebackers are easily sucked in, backs are constantly out of position, and the DL seldom gets the call to blitz. We actually looked half-way decent in the NC State but have gotten progressively worse each week. Sunseri and players claim the defense has been dumbed-down. Dumbed down to what? To become spectators? The formation Saturday actually looked like we were back in a 4-3.
Dooley gets his shot at D and we will all see if he can coach or not. Our offense has scored enough to win all but one game, so this has been discouraging to say the least. I'd like to see Hunter on a corner and see him go both ways. That would at least shut down one side. Heaven help us!

exlineman writes:

I say fire Sunseri and Ansley and hire head coaches from Maryville and Alcoa to handle the defense immediately. This may sound far out, but has anyone at UT ever took a look at these two great high school coaches. Year in and year out they have winners and I beleive both would love a promotion to UT. This is one of the things that UT is notorious for is to look all over the country for coaches that might be in their back door. It is quite possible that
Dale Jones, Al Wilson, Bill Bates and others would love to come back home. If I am on target, I beleive Bill Bates comes from a coaching family.

DeltaCharlie3 writes:

But what does Dooley know about coaching defense, and if he does know anything, why has he waited so long to bestow his knowledge on his football team?

And what is he doing with the offense, hitching his wagon to the only semi-competent piece of the team?

Seems like a cop-out to me. "oh, I've been
focused on offense, which is why the offense is s good, now I think I'll ease on down to the defense so i can drop some knowledge on them, since their sorta struggling and all."

Does anyone buy this?

jbc writes:

in response to jbc:

1 Alabama
5 Georgia
6 Florida
8 South Carolina
21 Mississippi State

http://www.bcsfootball.org/

1 Alabama
Vols score 3rd most points, 13, against Bama of any team this season. Highest is 17 points.

5 Georgia
Vols score 1st most points, 44, against Georgia of any team this season. Second is 24 points.

6 Florida
Vols score 1st most points, 20, against Florida of any team this season. Second is 17 points.

8 South Carolina
Vols score 1st most points, 35, against South Carolina of any team this season. Second is 21 points.

21 Mississippi State
Vols score 1st most points, 31, against Mississippi State of any team this season. Second is 24 points.

CoverOrange writes:

The day after the Kentucky game fire Dooley and Sunseri. Hire John Chavis and whomever he wants on defense. Leave the offense coaches alone. We'll be competing for the east next year.

jobrando#216494 writes:

in response to DeltaCharlie3:

But what does Dooley know about coaching defense, and if he does know anything, why has he waited so long to bestow his knowledge on his football team?

And what is he doing with the offense, hitching his wagon to the only semi-competent piece of the team?

Seems like a cop-out to me. "oh, I've been
focused on offense, which is why the offense is s good, now I think I'll ease on down to the defense so i can drop some knowledge on them, since their sorta struggling and all."

Does anyone buy this?

From the board of trust down the mother of all con jobs is in progress.....Dooley gets an extension

VOLHolla writes:

in response to DeltaCharlie3:

But what does Dooley know about coaching defense, and if he does know anything, why has he waited so long to bestow his knowledge on his football team?

And what is he doing with the offense, hitching his wagon to the only semi-competent piece of the team?

Seems like a cop-out to me. "oh, I've been
focused on offense, which is why the offense is s good, now I think I'll ease on down to the defense so i can drop some knowledge on them, since their sorta struggling and all."

Does anyone buy this?

nope - not sure he does either, just a bit of damage control.

too little too late.

vollerdash writes:

Stupid move Dooley, i would seperate myself as far from that D as i could.Best bet is to say you have been working with the O most of the time.

UTKin1992 writes:

in response to jbc:

1 Alabama
Vols score 3rd most points, 13, against Bama of any team this season. Highest is 17 points.

5 Georgia
Vols score 1st most points, 44, against Georgia of any team this season. Second is 24 points.

6 Florida
Vols score 1st most points, 20, against Florida of any team this season. Second is 17 points.

8 South Carolina
Vols score 1st most points, 35, against South Carolina of any team this season. Second is 21 points.

21 Mississippi State
Vols score 1st most points, 31, against Mississippi State of any team this season. Second is 24 points.

"1st most points"? What the he!! is that?

Your argument, like your grammar is lacking.

tnsportsman writes:

in response to DeltaCharlie3:

But what does Dooley know about coaching defense, and if he does know anything, why has he waited so long to bestow his knowledge on his football team?

And what is he doing with the offense, hitching his wagon to the only semi-competent piece of the team?

Seems like a cop-out to me. "oh, I've been
focused on offense, which is why the offense is s good, now I think I'll ease on down to the defense so i can drop some knowledge on them, since their sorta struggling and all."

Does anyone buy this?

You're Right and NO I don't buy Dooley coaching defense. Dooley can't even do his Head Coaching Job, LOL! This is like the Captain of the Titanic, saying he is also in charge of bailing water.

ITS TIME Hart, Fire Dooley now if he losses another game or after the season regardless! The Die Should Be Cast!

GO VOLS, ALWAYS!

jobrando#216494 writes:

in response to jbc:

1 Alabama
Vols score 3rd most points, 13, against Bama of any team this season. Highest is 17 points.

5 Georgia
Vols score 1st most points, 44, against Georgia of any team this season. Second is 24 points.

6 Florida
Vols score 1st most points, 20, against Florida of any team this season. Second is 17 points.

8 South Carolina
Vols score 1st most points, 35, against South Carolina of any team this season. Second is 21 points.

21 Mississippi State
Vols score 1st most points, 31, against Mississippi State of any team this season. Second is 24 points.

All great moral victories. Right?

CoverOrange writes:

Woohoo! Dooley is coming off IR and back in the game! What position does he play on defense again?

Vols_fan_27 writes:

in response to john316:

We would be better off doing onside kicks everytime.

While funny... also true... at least we would stand a chance of getting the ball without the other team scoring and keep our offense on the field... at this point, don't see how it could hurt....GBO!

Vols_fan_27 writes:

in response to jbc:

1 Alabama
Vols score 3rd most points, 13, against Bama of any team this season. Highest is 17 points.

5 Georgia
Vols score 1st most points, 44, against Georgia of any team this season. Second is 24 points.

6 Florida
Vols score 1st most points, 20, against Florida of any team this season. Second is 17 points.

8 South Carolina
Vols score 1st most points, 35, against South Carolina of any team this season. Second is 21 points.

21 Mississippi State
Vols score 1st most points, 31, against Mississippi State of any team this season. Second is 24 points.

All this does is remind us how much we suck on defense...GBO!

lemme_axya_this writes:

in response to jobrando#216494:

From the board of trust down the mother of all con jobs is in progress.....Dooley gets an extension

Another conspiracy theory Rich? What happened to "I know Jon Gruden will be our coach soon."

asleep#212036 writes:

in response to CoverOrange:

The day after the Kentucky game fire Dooley and Sunseri. Hire John Chavis and whomever he wants on defense. Leave the offense coaches alone. We'll be competing for the east next year.

Hiring Chavis would be a mistake. Surely you remember "3rd and Chavis" and his egregious prevent defense in the closing moments of close games. If you don't replay the LSU-Bama game..... The only reason he's so successful at LSU (and in UT's glory days) is that he overwhelms you with talent. Our defensive roster right now can't overwhelm Troy, let alone an SEC schedule. That's Sunseri's biggest problem, the elephant in the room nobody wants to talk about. The 3-4 requires NFL-level athletes with experience in order to be dominant, like Bama or Georgia. Our experienced players (Wagner, Lathers, J. Smith) aren't really that talented and our talented players (Gray, Coleman, Johnson) aren't experienced enough. Thus, our 112th ranked defense. My only question is, why couldn't DD see it before he hired Sal and why couldn't Sal see it before he took the job. Answer? I think they DID know going in but weren't worried because...... I think Hart told them they would both be OK no matter what this season as long as 2013 took a big jump forward, which it probably will. I have no inside info but that's the only thing that makes sense to me. I know, a conspiracy theory but who knows? Go Vols!!!

eb502us#225637 writes:

Dooleys answer is the dumbest I've heard yet. It's not like our offense is 6 plays and a touchdown. Sure it's uptempo, but the defense has plenty of time to rest and last year, we had no depth whereas this year we do.

Bottom line is that Dooley can make all the excuses he wants, as long as he's not doing it as the Vols coach. Fire his arse now!!!!

lemme_axya_this writes:

in response to DeltaCharlie3:

But what does Dooley know about coaching defense, and if he does know anything, why has he waited so long to bestow his knowledge on his football team?

And what is he doing with the offense, hitching his wagon to the only semi-competent piece of the team?

Seems like a cop-out to me. "oh, I've been
focused on offense, which is why the offense is s good, now I think I'll ease on down to the defense so i can drop some knowledge on them, since their sorta struggling and all."

Does anyone buy this?

I was wondering where you swamp rats were. Jarvis Jones must be lettin' you out of the barrel one at a time.

1986sugarbowl writes:

Ok number one, you don't wait until now to step into what is going on with the defense. Why hasn't everyone who helps coach defense, helped coach defense? I would have especially been in the defenses business after the Florida game. What the h3ll?

The more I hear and read the more incompetent Dooley is as a head coach. Why quote Bruce Hornsby's song? It says, somethings will never change. They just better!!

TKO writes:

Feels like being on a plane at thirty thousand feet and the engines just fell off

tuvol4u (Inactive) writes:

I still think we win out and here's why: although that sorry performance saturday was about on par with watching Wyoming plant their flag on our field a few years ago, the team mustered just enough spark to keep things from a breaking point. Its fragile, but its there.

I think the D will step up and come together in some way against mizzou and get us a win. I mean, how is it they looked so good against NC State and fall apart every week since?? Surely we will get something to go our way on D again soon and I think we will against Mizz.

I hate this seesaw effect with the offense and defense, one year its the O, the next its D. If Dooley can get this Defense working again, he will have a job.

thevoice writes:

in response to exlineman:

I say fire Sunseri and Ansley and hire head coaches from Maryville and Alcoa to handle the defense immediately. This may sound far out, but has anyone at UT ever took a look at these two great high school coaches. Year in and year out they have winners and I beleive both would love a promotion to UT. This is one of the things that UT is notorious for is to look all over the country for coaches that might be in their back door. It is quite possible that
Dale Jones, Al Wilson, Bill Bates and others would love to come back home. If I am on target, I beleive Bill Bates comes from a coaching family.

UT pregame last Saturday, Fuad Reveize, stated that Bill Bates sent a letter of intent to Dooley a while back to assist in Special Teams. Bates never heard back. Pretty telling.

tnoutlaw2001#228008 writes:

in response to jbc:

1 Alabama
5 Georgia
6 Florida
8 South Carolina
21 Mississippi State

http://www.bcsfootball.org/

I'll fill in the part you left out.

UT use to be in the top 3 on that list. They were almost always ahead of South Carolina and of course Mississippi state, and it's been that way for 4 years now.

Thanks for pointing it out.

lemme_axya_this writes:

in response to asleep#212036:

Hiring Chavis would be a mistake. Surely you remember "3rd and Chavis" and his egregious prevent defense in the closing moments of close games. If you don't replay the LSU-Bama game..... The only reason he's so successful at LSU (and in UT's glory days) is that he overwhelms you with talent. Our defensive roster right now can't overwhelm Troy, let alone an SEC schedule. That's Sunseri's biggest problem, the elephant in the room nobody wants to talk about. The 3-4 requires NFL-level athletes with experience in order to be dominant, like Bama or Georgia. Our experienced players (Wagner, Lathers, J. Smith) aren't really that talented and our talented players (Gray, Coleman, Johnson) aren't experienced enough. Thus, our 112th ranked defense. My only question is, why couldn't DD see it before he hired Sal and why couldn't Sal see it before he took the job. Answer? I think they DID know going in but weren't worried because...... I think Hart told them they would both be OK no matter what this season as long as 2013 took a big jump forward, which it probably will. I have no inside info but that's the only thing that makes sense to me. I know, a conspiracy theory but who knows? Go Vols!!!

If Dooley was so enamored with Sal and the 3-4 defense he could have went to it right away. It appears that the urgency for the switch arrived not long after Hart.
Then again, maybe I'm as guilty of conspiracy theories as those I have accused.

tnoutlaw2001#228008 writes:

in response to eb502us#225637:

Dooleys answer is the dumbest I've heard yet. It's not like our offense is 6 plays and a touchdown. Sure it's uptempo, but the defense has plenty of time to rest and last year, we had no depth whereas this year we do.

Bottom line is that Dooley can make all the excuses he wants, as long as he's not doing it as the Vols coach. Fire his arse now!!!!

Not really. It's the number of plays you get. If the offense goes 3 and out in 11 seconds, instead of say 30 seconds, that a huge difference over the game. Especially when the other team uses it against you.

This is a mix of bad things which shows the lack of something. Call it what you will but combining everything is bad. New coaches, younger players, new scheme, uptempo, no consistent running game, no consistent game plan.

UT was up 28-10, perfect time to start working a run game, instead Dooley and Chaney both admitted they wanted to keep the pedal down. You throw a few in-completions, and call a few time outs, next thing you know it comes back to bite you. It just shows they have no flow to their game plan and how they adjust.

And our offense is kind of 6 plays and a touchdown when it scores. Most scoring drives I think are like 2 minutes, but it can really kill you too.

pcshowtime writes:

This is nothing but trying to make him self look good. He waited until we come up on the worse 3 offenses on the schedule.

"I'm coming out of the offensive room and putting all my attention on defense,"

Dooley is such a horse a##. Where was his Defensive coaching in the heart of our sec schedule. He has been being asked about how much involvement he had in the defense for the last 5 weeks.
"No no I am an offensive coach."
Does not take any responsibility for defensive coaching before Troy because he knows Troys offense is in the top 20 in the country.
But now here comes Dooley our hero to save us because we are 112th in defense. He will save us from the powerhouse offenses of
Total offense
109th Mizzu
75th Vandy
120th KY

THANKS DEREK
Where were you 5 weeks ago
if you guys do not see through this bull Shot you need help. I love my school but I would not half way mind seeing James Franklin clean this guys plow.

pcshowtime writes:

in response to tuvol4u:

I still think we win out and here's why: although that sorry performance saturday was about on par with watching Wyoming plant their flag on our field a few years ago, the team mustered just enough spark to keep things from a breaking point. Its fragile, but its there.

I think the D will step up and come together in some way against mizzou and get us a win. I mean, how is it they looked so good against NC State and fall apart every week since?? Surely we will get something to go our way on D again soon and I think we will against Mizz.

I hate this seesaw effect with the offense and defense, one year its the O, the next its D. If Dooley can get this Defense working again, he will have a job.

Does the timing not seem a little funny to you. he waits until we face.
Total offense
109th Mizzu
75th Vandy
120th KY
Even though he said up until this point he had no involvement with the Defense.

MikeNPS writes:

in response to tuvol4u:

I still think we win out and here's why: although that sorry performance saturday was about on par with watching Wyoming plant their flag on our field a few years ago, the team mustered just enough spark to keep things from a breaking point. Its fragile, but its there.

I think the D will step up and come together in some way against mizzou and get us a win. I mean, how is it they looked so good against NC State and fall apart every week since?? Surely we will get something to go our way on D again soon and I think we will against Mizz.

I hate this seesaw effect with the offense and defense, one year its the O, the next its D. If Dooley can get this Defense working again, he will have a job.

Sorry, TUVol4U, but I do not think this Vols defensive unit has the ability nor the coaching to step up to challenge a junior high school team, let alone a major college team. I will always cheer for the Vols to win, but am expecting losses this weekend against Missouri and next weekend against the Vandy Commode Doors.

redskinvol1 writes:

FIRE DOOLEY NOW!!

shipperman#280095 writes:

in response to jbc:

1 Alabama
5 Georgia
6 Florida
8 South Carolina
21 Mississippi State

http://www.bcsfootball.org/

20: Louisiana Tech, without Dooley

shipperman#280095 writes:

in response to jbc:

1 Alabama
Vols score 3rd most points, 13, against Bama of any team this season. Highest is 17 points.

5 Georgia
Vols score 1st most points, 44, against Georgia of any team this season. Second is 24 points.

6 Florida
Vols score 1st most points, 20, against Florida of any team this season. Second is 17 points.

8 South Carolina
Vols score 1st most points, 35, against South Carolina of any team this season. Second is 21 points.

21 Mississippi State
Vols score 1st most points, 31, against Mississippi State of any team this season. Second is 24 points.

The VOLS also lost all of these games. Closeness counts only in horseshoes. The Vols also gave up 48 points to TROY

Lifelongvolsfan writes:

Here is something to think about. If the Vols win out and do qualify for a bowl game, would more fans travel to see a lower-tier bowl game with a new, exciting coach at the helm for the Vols or with Dooley still running the show???

I know I would be interested in going to a bowl game as a fan and spending some $$$ if it was a respected and promising new head coach in his first game. I do know it would be very tough on the athletes and I dont see how any coach could bring in his staff til after the season/bowl game is over though. I definitely wont be going to spend a chunk of money to go to a lower-tiered bowl game if Dooley is still coach.

rockypop writes:

in response to exlineman:

I say fire Sunseri and Ansley and hire head coaches from Maryville and Alcoa to handle the defense immediately. This may sound far out, but has anyone at UT ever took a look at these two great high school coaches. Year in and year out they have winners and I beleive both would love a promotion to UT. This is one of the things that UT is notorious for is to look all over the country for coaches that might be in their back door. It is quite possible that
Dale Jones, Al Wilson, Bill Bates and others would love to come back home. If I am on target, I beleive Bill Bates comes from a coaching family.

You apparently aren't aware that Fulmer interviewed George Quarles, the Maryville coach, when he was looking for an OC. Even Quarles himself said that based on the interview, he knew he would have been in over his head. And, good for Quarles. He knew something that guys like ex-Cincinnati Moeller coach Gerry Faust, who was hired out of high school to be the head coach at Notre Dame didn't know. Quarles is a great high school coach, and unlike a lot of coaches today, is satisfied with being who he is.

And, just assuming all those past UT greats you mentioned would love to come home, what makes you think they would be great coaches? Great players rarely make great coaches.

AlWilsonFan writes:

in response to john316:

We would be better off doing onside kicks everytime.

Yep. Go for it on every 4th down, don't kick field goals, onsides kick every time (with some creativity). http://highschool.rivals.com/content..... It's not that bad an idea even if you dont have the worst defense like ever. Oh and speaking of that, who the heck are 113-120????

eduardo writes:

This dude has absolutely no feel for the game.

JonGrudensAgent writes:

Offense, defense, special teams, it's all his team.

Hrockytop writes:

Not a troll, negavol, or a hater but truth be told what does CDD know about defense or offense for that matter?? He's never EVER even been a OC or DC coordinater of either..Yet still has a portion of the the fanbase pulling for him.....COMICAL.

VolGrad writes:

in response to maciste54:

112th out of 120 ????? Trying to let that sink in and keep my mouth closed and my credulity intact !

I find it difficult to believe there are actually at least 8 defensive units out there worse than our own right now.

PUL4VOLS writes:

Lee the head coach alone and stop with the negative waves. You are fooling yourselves if you think there will be a new coach by bowl time. If there is a bowl time, Dooley will coach it. As a Pro-Vol disappointed in the season fan, I hope they make it.

GloryDays writes:

in response to jbc:

1 Alabama
5 Georgia
6 Florida
8 South Carolina
21 Mississippi State

http://www.bcsfootball.org/

Let me try it. During the last 3 years Dooley and the Vols haven't beaten them once. 0-13 against the group of 5 teams. Not very good. I remember when Tennessee owned these teams, ok maybe not Florida but we did beat them in 1998 and 2001. Ah the good old days.

OklaVOL writes:

WOW. I can't believe all this. Dooley is the HC and he wants to help his team win, and because he doesn't do it the way you think it should be done, or when, you all want him gone. Fire, Fire, Fire. Again, I will remind you "fans" that there weren't many takers when Dooley took over, so I have no idea who you think would want the job now. The offense hung 44 on GA and 35 on SC. The defense is bad, but Dooley is still fighting, which is more than I can say for a lot of posters on here. Dooley doesn't embarrass me half as much as reading what I read on these posts. SUPPORT YOUR TEAM. GBO

Want to participate in the conversation? Become a subscriber today. Subscribers can read and comment on any story, anytime. Non-subscribers will only be able to view comments on select stories.

Features