John Adams: Tennessee still a top-20 job ... especially if the price is right

John Adams
Tennessee athletic director Dave Hart speaks to reporters at a news conference on Sunday, Nov. 18, 2012, in Knoxville, Tenn., after it was announced that head football coach Derek Dooley would be replaced by offensive coordinator Jim Chaney for the final SEC regular season game against Kentucky. (AP Photo/Wade Payne)

Tennessee athletic director Dave Hart speaks to reporters at a news conference on Sunday, Nov. 18, 2012, in Knoxville, Tenn., after it was announced that head football coach Derek Dooley would be replaced by offensive coordinator Jim Chaney for the final SEC regular season game against Kentucky. (AP Photo/Wade Payne)

Jim Chaney speaks as Vols interim head coach

Who should Tennessee go after as its next coach?

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Tennessee is about to get an assessment of its program. Coaching searches do that.

Who's interested? Who isn't?

And who would become interested if you threw enough money their way?

It shouldn't take long to find out now that the Vols have begun the process of hiring a replacement for coach Derek Dooley, who was fired Sunday.

Three years ago, they began the same process after one-year coach Lane Kiffin left for Southern California in January. When they hired Dooley, he was in the third year of his first head-coaching job at Louisiana Tech, where he had a losing record.

That gives you an idea of where UT stood at the time, as well as to how much it was willing to offer.

It's in better standing now, thanks to Dooley's recruiting. And it also should be in a spending mood.

Tennessee has had five losing seasons in eight years. It hasn't won more than seven games since 2007. This is no time for bargain shopping.

A photo of the Neyland Stadium crowd at the Tennessee-Troy game is proof of that. Athletic director Dave Hart should frame it and put it on his wall until he hires a new coach.

He obviously needs a coach who already has proved himself at the college or the pro level. But how many of those coaches would be interested in the Vols?

The answer will vary depending on how much Tennessee is willing to pay.

Although UT has been stumbling around the bottom of the SEC for the last couple of years, it's still a top-20 job, maybe slightly better.

I didn't have to think hard to come up with 14 programs that currently are more appealing than UT's for various reasons.

Five of those schools — Alabama, LSU, Texas A&M, Georgia and Florida — are in the SEC, and UT has to play three of them every year. Other schools on that list: Texas, Oklahoma, Ohio State, Michigan, Southern California, Oregon, Nebraska, Florida State and Notre Dame.

Coaches probably would add more schools to the list, especially when they consider that Dooley had only three years to turn around the program.

The SEC is a daunting proposition for anybody. The Vols' challenge is exacerbated by having Alabama as their annual non-divisonal opponent. But it's also easier to recruit to this conference, which is the closest thing to the NFL that an aspiring pro football player will find.

Tennessee's facilities are great. The fans are fantastic. And the stadium is an eye-catcher.

You have to rely on regional and national recruiting, though. That's a bigger challenge now than when coaches Johnny Majors and Phillip Fulmer were winning big in the 1990s.

The East was tough enough when Florida began winning national titles and Mark Richt stabilized Georgia. Now, you can make the case that Steve Spurrier has made South Carolina a better job than UT's.

Auburn is down now and is the No. 2 school in its own state. But it has had two unbeaten seasons and a national championship in the last eight years.

Arkansas has won 11 more games than UT has the past five years. It also has been willing to shell out more money for coaches, which is something to consider in that it has a coaching search of its own to conduct.

Mississippi State has won six more games than UT in the past five years. Despite winning only two games in 2011, even Ole Miss has won more games than Tennessee in the past five years. Kentucky, UT's opponent Saturday in the Vols' season finale, has won just as many.

Coaching candidates will have to weigh UT's current failure against its longtime success.

From 1985 through 2004, it won fewer than eight games only twice. From 1965 through 1973, it never won fewer than eight games.

In 1950-51, it was 21-2 and won a national title. In 1938-40, it was 31-2.

All that success in all those different decades won't be lost on a coaching candidate. Neither will the expectations that accompany it.

The history will add to the job's appeal. A huge contract will make those expectations less of a concern.

John Adams is a senior columnist. He may be reached at 865-342-6284 or adamsj@knoxnews.com. Follow him at http://twitter.com/johnadamskns

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Comments » 100

rocky_topper writes:

Too bad it isn't a top 20 program.

DeltaCharlie3 writes:

Ron Zook! Throw whatever he's asking plus $500,000 on the table and dare him to decline!

Clad_In_Big_Orange writes:

Gruden has been spotted at Nama's

baldingalum writes:

Top 20? Top 10. Most beautiful stadium in the country. Brand new facilities. Devoted fan base. It's in the best conference in college football but not in the DEEP SOUTH - as in Darwin's waiting room. 6 National Championships. Alma mater of the NFL's top quarterback and running back. Devoted fans. It's a great job. Don't undersell KNS.

scvols writes:

All it takes is the right coach. With the right coach we will be playing for the east in two years and playing for a NC in four. But remember when we hired Dooley, no one wanted it.

BIVOLAR_BEARE writes:

UT is a top 10 frakin job, Adams..Top ten all time wins, bowl appearances and conference titles and national titles..What program is at their peak after a coaching change?? None, so get a name in here that sends a message to 4&5 star athletes that UT is serious about competing at the highest level..GRUDEN!!!

Witch_Doctors writes:

Witch Doctor find out they didnt open up the checkbook like Bama did with Saban or KY with Cal Witch Doctor say everyone involved will have holiday curse of the flaming poo! Witch Doctor say no cheapies! Doesnt work. Money does. Witch Doctor say if Chucky gives you a price. then thats how much we spend. Witch Doctor say NOW we have to pay..no mistakes.
Bones never lie.

OwensboroVol writes:

I dare say that the next coach will be someone We haven't mentioned as yet. I read somewhere that someone was saying Skip Holtz. That is an interesting thought. Could be a great hire as he has been successful every where he has been.\

VolFanInTheBoro (Inactive) writes:

in response to GlennFordsFoible:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

If Alabama can claim them the Vols can claim them

baldingalum writes:

in response to GlennFordsFoible:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Are you kidding me? Every college program has questionable titles. In the case of Tennessee they should have received at least 3 titles during Neyland's run that they didn't. I truly believe they won 6 - maybe just not the 6 posted in the stadium. BTW, visit Notre Dame, Pitt, Minnesota, Alabama, LSU on and on...

volbike writes:

If we keep fumbling around Peyton will be retiring in about 3 more years and so will Saban.

I bet PM would give his eye teeth to coach at UT, maybe for free. He certainly won't need the money. He will need something foot ball related.
I think his reputation and sincerity would make him one of the greatest recruiters of all time.

jobrando#216494 writes:

in response to Clad_In_Big_Orange:

Gruden has been spotted at Nama's

Must be his twin. I'm watching him on MNF and he's wearing a red tie. Maybe he's taking Ark offer. We can just keep Chaney or hire Phil back.

lomas98 writes:

in response to OwensboroVol:

I dare say that the next coach will be someone We haven't mentioned as yet. I read somewhere that someone was saying Skip Holtz. That is an interesting thought. Could be a great hire as he has been successful every where he has been.\

USF would gladly give him away.

jobrando#216494 writes:

in response to Witch_Doctors:

Witch Doctor find out they didnt open up the checkbook like Bama did with Saban or KY with Cal Witch Doctor say everyone involved will have holiday curse of the flaming poo! Witch Doctor say no cheapies! Doesnt work. Money does. Witch Doctor say if Chucky gives you a price. then thats how much we spend. Witch Doctor say NOW we have to pay..no mistakes.
Bones never lie.

Would you be surprised if they still dont open the checkbook? I want. Long as they can figure how to lead the sheep into Neyland they will do it.

Witch_Doctors writes:

in response to jobrando#216494:

Would you be surprised if they still dont open the checkbook? I want. Long as they can figure how to lead the sheep into Neyland they will do it.

Witch Doctor say Dooley failing and a weak hire could set this program back to the stone ages. Witch Doctor really think(?) its going to take an exciting hire to save half empty Neyland. Witch Doctors fingers crossed.
Bones never lie.

Colts_VolFan writes:

in response to volbike:

If we keep fumbling around Peyton will be retiring in about 3 more years and so will Saban.

I bet PM would give his eye teeth to coach at UT, maybe for free. He certainly won't need the money. He will need something foot ball related.
I think his reputation and sincerity would make him one of the greatest recruiters of all time.

Reputation and sincerity? He's Peyton Freakin Manning. Nuff said.

eprahm (Inactive) writes:

Good article!

asleep#212036 writes:

in response to scvols:

All it takes is the right coach. With the right coach we will be playing for the east in two years and playing for a NC in four. But remember when we hired Dooley, no one wanted it.

We don't know who might have wanted the job if the money had been right. Hamilton was an accountant and didn't have Hart's fortitude to address all the financial issues with Dr. Cheek and company, choosing rather to live inside very restrictive financial boundaries with his coaching search. Had Cheek given him (though he didn't ask) the apparent open checkbook he's giving Hart, who knows? Of course, things weren't as glum back then off an 8-5 Kiffin year and a Chik-Fil-A bowl appearance. I think the Dooley era will help us get our coach of the future. Richt followed Donnan, Miles followed Dinardo, Meyer followed Zook, Saban followed Shula...well, we get the picture. Had Dooley not changed the defense and had we subsequently won 9 or more games, guess who would have gotten a big raise and an extension? Does anyone think Dooley could ever have taken us to a NC? How about an SEC championship trophy? The East? My point is that Dooley is a good coach but to win at Tennessee in 2013 and beyond, we will need a great coach. His three year fumble may turn out to be a turning point we couldn't have reached otherwise. Write the check Dr. Cheek! Go Vols!!!

tvol328 writes:

Just want to correct the small talk - Tennessee DOES have 6 national titles and Neyland stadium has them posted - they were all legit as the system in place at the time included 6 major polls.
I have mulled over the Coaching search and quite frankly JON GRUDEN is NOT going to leave ESPN.

Good Coach's
1) Kyle Whittingham - Utah ( My personal favorite) do your homework on his guy.

2) Gary Patterson - TCU

3) Charlie Strong - Louisville

4) Bob Stoops - Oklahoma

I'm am sure there are more!

10seVol85_Part_Deux writes:

in response to titletownz:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Actually, the sticking point was that UT wasn't going to let him wear jorts on the sidelines. Apparently, he's still a Gator.

Orangethrunthru writes:

in response to GlennFordsFoible:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Having played their first season in 1891, the Vols have amassed a successful tradition for well over a century, with their combined record of 794-349-52 ranking them ninth on the list of all-time winningest major college programs as well as second on the list of winningest SEC programs. Their all-time ranking in bowl appearances is third (49) and sixth in all-time bowl victories. They boast six national titles in their history and their last national championship was in the 1998 college football season. Glen just who the heck do yu think you are??? Who died and left you the right to determine who is insignificant??? I would suggest that your "bantar" is worthless dribble and that you nor anyone else has the right to dispurge the accomplishments of those who gave their all for Tennessee.

10seVol85_Part_Deux writes:

in response to Orangethrunthru:

Having played their first season in 1891, the Vols have amassed a successful tradition for well over a century, with their combined record of 794-349-52 ranking them ninth on the list of all-time winningest major college programs as well as second on the list of winningest SEC programs. Their all-time ranking in bowl appearances is third (49) and sixth in all-time bowl victories. They boast six national titles in their history and their last national championship was in the 1998 college football season. Glen just who the heck do yu think you are??? Who died and left you the right to determine who is insignificant??? I would suggest that your "bantar" is worthless dribble and that you nor anyone else has the right to dispurge the accomplishments of those who gave their all for Tennessee.

Jeff Flowers is just a sad old never-was. His brother was a very good football player, but he just never measured up, so he spends all his time coming up with clever screen names (because he gets banned regularly) and denigrating everybody he can in a futile attempt to make himself feel significant.

TheStupidPolice writes:

in response to OwensboroVol:

I dare say that the next coach will be someone We haven't mentioned as yet. I read somewhere that someone was saying Skip Holtz. That is an interesting thought. Could be a great hire as he has been successful every where he has been.\

Let's not get stupid. South Florida is 3-7 in his 3rd year.

orangecountyvols writes:

in response to Orangethrunthru:

Having played their first season in 1891, the Vols have amassed a successful tradition for well over a century, with their combined record of 794-349-52 ranking them ninth on the list of all-time winningest major college programs as well as second on the list of winningest SEC programs. Their all-time ranking in bowl appearances is third (49) and sixth in all-time bowl victories. They boast six national titles in their history and their last national championship was in the 1998 college football season. Glen just who the heck do yu think you are??? Who died and left you the right to determine who is insignificant??? I would suggest that your "bantar" is worthless dribble and that you nor anyone else has the right to dispurge the accomplishments of those who gave their all for Tennessee.

Thru and thru,

Who does Kremser/GlennFord/Flowery-troll
think he is?????

We know he's an embarrassment to the University of Tennessee. Simply a whiny loser.........one who has these issues with former Vols, so he sticks their name in his screen name to try and justify his inadequacies.

Richmond must really be proud of this jerk......

VolinCalif writes:

in response to collegegrovebilly:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

It's a very good thing that you weren't around in the days before the PILL. Girls would have been in a lot of trouble. Such smoove talking.

VolinCalif writes:

By the way John. "If the price is really right." The job is usually No. 1. But you know that.

cloudodust writes:

Hart's now the guy with sweaty palms, sleepless nights and shooting that extra shot of Glenlivet 18 year just to try and knock off the edge. Maybe he's already compiled a short list. Heck, maybe he brought a short list to Tennessee Day One. Whatever the masterminds sitting around the mahogany table come up with, we lowly fans hope it works. Hope be danged, most demand it works. The beast is hungry and it must be fed...Best of luck in your search, Mr. Hart.

pcorange writes:

Top 20, hell. Tennessee is a top 5 coaching job. One of the 5 biggest stadiums in the nation, the largest in the SEC and was 11000 seats bigger than it is now until we decided to build NFL-esque luxury skyboxes. Awesome heritage, one of the 10 winningest programs all time, one of the (if not the only) big time college stadiums right on a river, the Vol Navy, rabid fan base that will support a coach that is doing things the right way and moving us back to where we belong, the Vol Walk, the Pride of the Southland Marching Band, Rocky Top, Tennessee Waltz, Orange Blossom Special, dozens upon dozens of top notch NFL players can call UT home, 6 national championships (2 unanimous), top notch football practice complex, the greatest college gameday experience in all of football, miles of orange as far as you can see prior to a big SEC game at Neyland Stadium, John Ward's "He's at the 20, the 10, the 5,4,3,2,1...GIVE...HIM...SIX. TOUCHDOWN TENNESSEE!!!!" (I sure do miss that. Kesling is the next guy that needs to be replaced.), one of the most popular vacation destinations (Smoky Mtns, Gatlinburg) right in the backyard, have a billionaire donor that wants to see UT back on top, can afford (with our sponsors) to compete with any school in the country salary-wise for a top coach. How could anybody say this isn't a top 5 coaching destination? Nick Saban sure didn't seem to mind that Alabama had few bad seasons and had endured pretty heavy penalties from the NCAA when they offered him the position. He recognized Bama for the same thing Tennessee is: a historically competitive and winning football program in the most competitive conference in the country. So, please, no more talk about Tennessee not being an attractive job. Anybody who doesn't have the good sense to see what we have here isn't qualified to coach.

born2ride writes:

We will not spend the money needed to get Gruden or a big name coach.

Most likely we will end up with a mid major coach or an assistant.

Tau_of_Tennessee writes:

in response to baldingalum:

Top 20? Top 10. Most beautiful stadium in the country. Brand new facilities. Devoted fan base. It's in the best conference in college football but not in the DEEP SOUTH - as in Darwin's waiting room. 6 National Championships. Alma mater of the NFL's top quarterback and running back. Devoted fans. It's a great job. Don't undersell KNS.

Good point! I spent last summer in Oklahoma City/Norman. Knoxville is like nirvana in comparison.

I have pondered what a Dan Mullin or Mullin clone could do with UT resources.

VolinCalif writes:

in response to pcorange:

Top 20, hell. Tennessee is a top 5 coaching job. One of the 5 biggest stadiums in the nation, the largest in the SEC and was 11000 seats bigger than it is now until we decided to build NFL-esque luxury skyboxes. Awesome heritage, one of the 10 winningest programs all time, one of the (if not the only) big time college stadiums right on a river, the Vol Navy, rabid fan base that will support a coach that is doing things the right way and moving us back to where we belong, the Vol Walk, the Pride of the Southland Marching Band, Rocky Top, Tennessee Waltz, Orange Blossom Special, dozens upon dozens of top notch NFL players can call UT home, 6 national championships (2 unanimous), top notch football practice complex, the greatest college gameday experience in all of football, miles of orange as far as you can see prior to a big SEC game at Neyland Stadium, John Ward's "He's at the 20, the 10, the 5,4,3,2,1...GIVE...HIM...SIX. TOUCHDOWN TENNESSEE!!!!" (I sure do miss that. Kesling is the next guy that needs to be replaced.), one of the most popular vacation destinations (Smoky Mtns, Gatlinburg) right in the backyard, have a billionaire donor that wants to see UT back on top, can afford (with our sponsors) to compete with any school in the country salary-wise for a top coach. How could anybody say this isn't a top 5 coaching destination? Nick Saban sure didn't seem to mind that Alabama had few bad seasons and had endured pretty heavy penalties from the NCAA when they offered him the position. He recognized Bama for the same thing Tennessee is: a historically competitive and winning football program in the most competitive conference in the country. So, please, no more talk about Tennessee not being an attractive job. Anybody who doesn't have the good sense to see what we have here isn't qualified to coach.

WOW! That gives you 6 + a two pt conv.

FWBVol writes:

in response to asleep#212036:

We don't know who might have wanted the job if the money had been right. Hamilton was an accountant and didn't have Hart's fortitude to address all the financial issues with Dr. Cheek and company, choosing rather to live inside very restrictive financial boundaries with his coaching search. Had Cheek given him (though he didn't ask) the apparent open checkbook he's giving Hart, who knows? Of course, things weren't as glum back then off an 8-5 Kiffin year and a Chik-Fil-A bowl appearance. I think the Dooley era will help us get our coach of the future. Richt followed Donnan, Miles followed Dinardo, Meyer followed Zook, Saban followed Shula...well, we get the picture. Had Dooley not changed the defense and had we subsequently won 9 or more games, guess who would have gotten a big raise and an extension? Does anyone think Dooley could ever have taken us to a NC? How about an SEC championship trophy? The East? My point is that Dooley is a good coach but to win at Tennessee in 2013 and beyond, we will need a great coach. His three year fumble may turn out to be a turning point we couldn't have reached otherwise. Write the check Dr. Cheek! Go Vols!!!

Actually Miles followed Saban at LSU when Saban bolted for the Dolphins.

nocleats writes:

It is a top 20 Job and can easily be a top 10 job if the obstacles that Tennessee created for itself over the last 10 yrs are done away with,, AD Hart mentioned them at some length at the press conference but the media did not jump on it for detail... Coach Dickey hinted at it several times and had some meetings with Cheek and Hart about it and the last 4 or 5 yrs of Coach Fulmers tenure it had an effect... Bottom Line... If an Athelete is academically eligible at LSU, Miss St, Oklahoma St, or South Carolina (among many others) they should be eligible for enrollment at TENNESSEE as well. But this IS NOT the case.. These changes occured subtely about 10 yrs ago. Tennesseesadmissions requirements should be no different than the NCAA requirements. Hart says they are working on it, I say Haslam has to make it happen.

stout40GOBIGORANGE writes:

Adams is an idiot. Tennessee is a top 5 job and with its tradition and history,its higher than that.

Razor784 writes:

When UT's winning we're a top 10 job. The only drawback to UT is the recruiting base is weak. When a new coach comes in, he has to recruit nationally instead of having a ton of in state talent in his back yard. We have the facilities, tradition, and fan base that few others can match.

pcorange writes:

in response to nocleats:

It is a top 20 Job and can easily be a top 10 job if the obstacles that Tennessee created for itself over the last 10 yrs are done away with,, AD Hart mentioned them at some length at the press conference but the media did not jump on it for detail... Coach Dickey hinted at it several times and had some meetings with Cheek and Hart about it and the last 4 or 5 yrs of Coach Fulmers tenure it had an effect... Bottom Line... If an Athelete is academically eligible at LSU, Miss St, Oklahoma St, or South Carolina (among many others) they should be eligible for enrollment at TENNESSEE as well. But this IS NOT the case.. These changes occured subtely about 10 yrs ago. Tennesseesadmissions requirements should be no different than the NCAA requirements. Hart says they are working on it, I say Haslam has to make it happen.

+1, except that I still say it is a top 5 jobs, even with the enrollment limitations.

rb4346 writes:

in response to rocky_topper:

Too bad it isn't a top 20 program.

Sad thing is we have the top twenty talent at Tennessee but have not had the coaching to bring out the talent.

decades_vol (Inactive) writes:

in response to titletownz:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Hey, DC and TTZ! Maybe you two lowbrows should ease over to the Gator website and encourage your boys to get ready for the Noles. They'll be going for the trifecta against your overrated Gators. I'll be pulling for the home team in Tallahassee. And I don't like the Seminoles at all.

NashVOL21 writes:

Start with Gruden, but don't jump down to the college level just because he may not see UT as the right fit. The next coach has to be a stone cold winner, think Jim Harbaugh or his brother in Baltimore and pay them. Don't just swing for the fence once and go back to the college ranks. The cream of the SEC crop, Saban and Spurrier, are a couple of NFL wash outs. They recruit and have a good system, but a NFL coach will expose them if he has near equal talent and is the right hire.

OwensboroVol writes:

I read in Sporting News that Jim Tressel was a candidate for the job. I thought he had a show cause which would prevent him from coaching for a number of years? The article said it wouldn't be a problem without explaining?

bigorangesux writes:

in response to OwensboroVol:

I dare say that the next coach will be someone We haven't mentioned as yet. I read somewhere that someone was saying Skip Holtz. That is an interesting thought. Could be a great hire as he has been successful every where he has been.\

That's a great idea. . . get another coach related to a successful coach like Dooley was!
Go for a football name or an Alabama connection; that always seems to work.

bigorangesux writes:

in response to stout40GOBIGORANGE:

Adams is an idiot. Tennessee is a top 5 job and with its tradition and history,its higher than that.

Of course it is; that's why Dooley took it (when no one else would) and is leaving with a $5million parting gift.

DwayneElizondoMountainDewHerbertCamacho writes:

"Coaches probably would add more schools to the list, especially when they consider that Dooley had only three years to turn around the program."

This is such a B.S. argument. Dooley had three years to show PROGRESS, not win an SEC championship or the BCS or totally turn around the Vols. Any serious coaching candidate can see that Dooley was given more than enough time and that he squandered it. He lost his staff. He implemented an extremely complex defensive scheme in a year when he had the offense to win close games (not to mention that he was on the hot seat). He alienated players, former players, and recruits. He lost his team at the end of 2011. His post game press conferences were nothing more than excuse festivals and strange discussions on topics such as horticulture and shower discipline. His play calling in close games was either cowardly, illogical, or almost designed for failure.

Dooley set his own chair on fire. Let's not act like Dave Hart is at fault because he put the fire out too quickly. Any rational and sane coaching candidate will see that Dooley was in over his head and was given enough time to prove that he was more than a WAC coach with a career losing record.

IF Hart hires a proven winner, I have faith that the fans will weather the assuredly tough times ahead. If Hart hires another experiment or a Rich Rodriguez type, then the fans will (justifiably) demand quick results.

Volunatic writes:

in response to OwensboroVol:

I dare say that the next coach will be someone We haven't mentioned as yet. I read somewhere that someone was saying Skip Holtz. That is an interesting thought. Could be a great hire as he has been successful every where he has been.\

USF is currently 3-7, 1-6 in the Big East. No thanks on Skip Holtz.

lstbodeanvol writes:

in response to titletownz:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

answering your own posts just like packer park jeff flowers...lol your daddy zook better stick to working at kinkos after the loser coached at illinos....or doing his Dick vitale impersonations...go noles beat moosedump

Couchdummy writes:

in response to volbike:

If we keep fumbling around Peyton will be retiring in about 3 more years and so will Saban.

I bet PM would give his eye teeth to coach at UT, maybe for free. He certainly won't need the money. He will need something foot ball related.
I think his reputation and sincerity would make him one of the greatest recruiters of all time.

I just cannot see PM even wanting to consider the head coaching job at UT. This is not a criticism of the position, just my failure to see any incentive for him to jeopardize or tarnish his place in UT memory as the best player in its storied school history.

chattbud writes:

Fire John Adams too!

rainbow6 writes:

Yes Tennessee is a top 20 program but is shackled to a loser for an AD and a worthless rag for a News Paper .
I read recently where the sports editor was advocating a riot if Dooley wasn't fired .....immediately.
How professional is that?

chuckfromwoodberry writes:

in response to pcorange:

Top 20, hell. Tennessee is a top 5 coaching job. One of the 5 biggest stadiums in the nation, the largest in the SEC and was 11000 seats bigger than it is now until we decided to build NFL-esque luxury skyboxes. Awesome heritage, one of the 10 winningest programs all time, one of the (if not the only) big time college stadiums right on a river, the Vol Navy, rabid fan base that will support a coach that is doing things the right way and moving us back to where we belong, the Vol Walk, the Pride of the Southland Marching Band, Rocky Top, Tennessee Waltz, Orange Blossom Special, dozens upon dozens of top notch NFL players can call UT home, 6 national championships (2 unanimous), top notch football practice complex, the greatest college gameday experience in all of football, miles of orange as far as you can see prior to a big SEC game at Neyland Stadium, John Ward's "He's at the 20, the 10, the 5,4,3,2,1...GIVE...HIM...SIX. TOUCHDOWN TENNESSEE!!!!" (I sure do miss that. Kesling is the next guy that needs to be replaced.), one of the most popular vacation destinations (Smoky Mtns, Gatlinburg) right in the backyard, have a billionaire donor that wants to see UT back on top, can afford (with our sponsors) to compete with any school in the country salary-wise for a top coach. How could anybody say this isn't a top 5 coaching destination? Nick Saban sure didn't seem to mind that Alabama had few bad seasons and had endured pretty heavy penalties from the NCAA when they offered him the position. He recognized Bama for the same thing Tennessee is: a historically competitive and winning football program in the most competitive conference in the country. So, please, no more talk about Tennessee not being an attractive job. Anybody who doesn't have the good sense to see what we have here isn't qualified to coach.

No need for any more comments. You nailed it brother. Agree 100%.

15_counting writes:

Everyone just relax! Hart will get it right this time. In a couple of years Tennessee will be right back in the mix. As a Bama fan I sympathize with you guys and all these coaching changes (been there done that). I was shocked to hear Tennessee had 12 presidents since 2000. There lies the problem. However, it sounded like in Harts press conference he had full support of the current president. I have no clue who Hart will tap as the next head coach but it will be the right man for the job. His reputation and career are riding on it!

Here's an early "Welcome Back"

Roll Tide!

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