Restoring Rocky Top coaching search crucial for Vols

University of Tennessee Athletic Director Dave Hart during a press conference at Neyland Stadium on Sunday, November 18, 2012 regarding the future of Tennessee football. 
  
 (Saul Young/News Sentinel)

Photo by Saul Young, 2012 Knoxville News Sentinel

University of Tennessee Athletic Director Dave Hart during a press conference at Neyland Stadium on Sunday, November 18, 2012 regarding the future of Tennessee football. (Saul Young/News Sentinel)

Who should Tennessee go after as its next coach?

See the results »

View previous polls »

KNOXVILLE — On his Twitter account, Daniel Gray posted what every Tennessee football fan was wondering on Sunday around noon.

In the wake of coach Derek Dooley's dismissal, the Volunteers are back in the market for a replacement just three years after consecutive coaching changes.

"Can't wait to see who our new coach is," the freshman cornerback posted shortly after Tennessee's players were informed of the change by Dooley and athletic director Dave Hart late Sunday morning.

A few hours later, Hart sat down for his news conference and set the stage for what will be a crucial search for Dooley's replacement.

Continue reading at the Times Free Press.

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 This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

  • Discuss
  • Print

Related Topics

Comments » 33

Govols1995 writes:

We need GRUDEN plain and simple!!!!!

VolBall18 writes:

in response to Govols1995:

We need GRUDEN plain and simple!!!!!

YES! YES! AND YES!

gemin555#214016 writes:

On one hand, I'm sorry to see the departure of Mr. Dooley. I think he did as good as he could with the situation. From watching the games on tv this season, I think the problem not only lies with the coaches but may come down to the attitude of the players. The ones that are the 'big names' seemed to have had a bad attitude this season. I was disappointed to see how they acted the other night at Vanderbilt especially the way Tyler Bray acted. Instead of acting and performing as a junior, he was acting more like that of a young child. It just reminded me of what was described from his incidents with the law several months ago. Hes acted like this all season.

While the defense has gotten complaints online, I think they have been quite well considering what the offense has given them. Alot of the times, the offense would come out and only play 3 plays and off they go. Then, the defense would come out while the other team would be able to march down the field. The offense seemed to give up alot when if they kept fighting, they may have won more games. You don't see Alabama players give up when they have a bad play or even lose. They keep fighting to win. Who knows if a pass here and there would have been thrown to the right player who would have caught it, there may have been more wins for UT.

I don't mean to harp on Bray but does he really think he could be drafted the way he has been acting on the field this season? I think Mr. Dooley was more than patient with him and others on the offense. I bet if they were on any other team, they would have been on the sidelines even moreso watching others playing on offense.

Luckily, the players will wise up and play better next week like they want to win, especially those that are the 'big names' and are highlighted on tv. If they don't want to play, I'm sure there are others on the team that would relish the opportunity and give it their all for the TEAM and university.

VolBall18 writes:

in response to gemin555#214016:

On one hand, I'm sorry to see the departure of Mr. Dooley. I think he did as good as he could with the situation. From watching the games on tv this season, I think the problem not only lies with the coaches but may come down to the attitude of the players. The ones that are the 'big names' seemed to have had a bad attitude this season. I was disappointed to see how they acted the other night at Vanderbilt especially the way Tyler Bray acted. Instead of acting and performing as a junior, he was acting more like that of a young child. It just reminded me of what was described from his incidents with the law several months ago. Hes acted like this all season.

While the defense has gotten complaints online, I think they have been quite well considering what the offense has given them. Alot of the times, the offense would come out and only play 3 plays and off they go. Then, the defense would come out while the other team would be able to march down the field. The offense seemed to give up alot when if they kept fighting, they may have won more games. You don't see Alabama players give up when they have a bad play or even lose. They keep fighting to win. Who knows if a pass here and there would have been thrown to the right player who would have caught it, there may have been more wins for UT.

I don't mean to harp on Bray but does he really think he could be drafted the way he has been acting on the field this season? I think Mr. Dooley was more than patient with him and others on the offense. I bet if they were on any other team, they would have been on the sidelines even moreso watching others playing on offense.

Luckily, the players will wise up and play better next week like they want to win, especially those that are the 'big names' and are highlighted on tv. If they don't want to play, I'm sure there are others on the team that would relish the opportunity and give it their all for the TEAM and university.

If Gruden becomes coach, Bray will either straighten up quick or he won't see the field at all. Gruden would demand respect and throw away the foolishness.

Shake_Bake writes:

I just hope this doesn't take too long, because we desparately need a very strong recruiting class!! Who ever the new coach is, make the decision as soon as possible so he can get to work on recruiting the right players in here!

paradisetaxi writes:

Jay Gruden could be headed to the NFL ... I like him !

VolBall18 writes:

Well, I don't see how Bob Stoops is a valid candidate for UT. How unbelievable would it be to get Gruden as HC and Stoops as DC!! WHEWWW!! Let's get it done UT!!!!!!!!

volcop writes:

UT needs to just get out the checkbook and get Gruden. They have been writing checks to Fulmer,Hamilton,Pearl,now Dooley. Gruden's name alone right now would bring in recruits.Gruden is the big name that can compete with Sabian, Spurrier ,Muschamp,Miles,etc. Plus if Gruden wants to be inducted into the coaches hall of fame he can become a legend with success at UT.

wallingdad writes:

in response to gemin555#214016:

On one hand, I'm sorry to see the departure of Mr. Dooley. I think he did as good as he could with the situation. From watching the games on tv this season, I think the problem not only lies with the coaches but may come down to the attitude of the players. The ones that are the 'big names' seemed to have had a bad attitude this season. I was disappointed to see how they acted the other night at Vanderbilt especially the way Tyler Bray acted. Instead of acting and performing as a junior, he was acting more like that of a young child. It just reminded me of what was described from his incidents with the law several months ago. Hes acted like this all season.

While the defense has gotten complaints online, I think they have been quite well considering what the offense has given them. Alot of the times, the offense would come out and only play 3 plays and off they go. Then, the defense would come out while the other team would be able to march down the field. The offense seemed to give up alot when if they kept fighting, they may have won more games. You don't see Alabama players give up when they have a bad play or even lose. They keep fighting to win. Who knows if a pass here and there would have been thrown to the right player who would have caught it, there may have been more wins for UT.

I don't mean to harp on Bray but does he really think he could be drafted the way he has been acting on the field this season? I think Mr. Dooley was more than patient with him and others on the offense. I bet if they were on any other team, they would have been on the sidelines even moreso watching others playing on offense.

Luckily, the players will wise up and play better next week like they want to win, especially those that are the 'big names' and are highlighted on tv. If they don't want to play, I'm sure there are others on the team that would relish the opportunity and give it their all for the TEAM and university.

the attitudes of the players are a result of the coaching. Good coaches do not put up with the bad boy attitude. I was shocked that Patterson was still in the game after his showboating for a second straight game.
that shows a lack of control Dooley had with the players. Prima Donnas simply could do almost anything they wanted. this was displayed earlier when Dooley made light of the situation with Bray thowing the beer bottles and causing private property damage.

I am glad that Dooley is gone. I do not see the great guy thing and do not understand all the "pity" Dooley comments.

Mikeah writes:

Thank God most certainly not all but most of the bad posters on this blog are not Tennessee Alumni, and most probably never set foot in a class room on campus. The comments I have read give a new meaning to the phrase “White Trash”. I agree Coach Dooley had to go, but we should all have respect for his wife and children and the job he tried to do. The comments about Coach Majors and Coach Fulmer are just simply trashy. I remember from my days in school there is a certain element of Tennessee fans, and some students unfortunately that just have no class. I was in a Fraternity and thought/think Fraternity members showed a little more sensitivity but certainly not always. Please try to show more class then we have in the past when making comments about disagreeing with decision made.
It is ok to disagree with the coaching style or decisions made but have enough class to not insult the man. These kinds of comments really make us all look bad. No matter who Mr. Hart hires some folks will not be happy. Thankfully he is not considering outside opinions on his decision. IMO we don’t need Mr. Gruden,(no college head coaching experience) we need a younger head coach with a proven winning record on a big stage. Stoops would be great if we could get him or maybe even Jimbo Fisher. Be very interesting to see. Whoever we hire we will have for a while because we cannot afford another buy out in three years.

mrvol2u writes:

in response to Shake_Bake:

I just hope this doesn't take too long, because we desparately need a very strong recruiting class!! Who ever the new coach is, make the decision as soon as possible so he can get to work on recruiting the right players in here!

Quicker would only be better if we get the right guy!

If it comes down to the right guy or the recruiting class, I say forgo the recruiting class and get the right guy!

I think Hart has done a better job than I thought if he is getting some changes on the academic side as well as other changes made.

Cheeks may have seen the light on how much money a top football program generates for your university in ALL other areas and not just sports.

GO VOLS!!!

Ironcity writes:

in response to gemin555#214016:

On one hand, I'm sorry to see the departure of Mr. Dooley. I think he did as good as he could with the situation. From watching the games on tv this season, I think the problem not only lies with the coaches but may come down to the attitude of the players. The ones that are the 'big names' seemed to have had a bad attitude this season. I was disappointed to see how they acted the other night at Vanderbilt especially the way Tyler Bray acted. Instead of acting and performing as a junior, he was acting more like that of a young child. It just reminded me of what was described from his incidents with the law several months ago. Hes acted like this all season.

While the defense has gotten complaints online, I think they have been quite well considering what the offense has given them. Alot of the times, the offense would come out and only play 3 plays and off they go. Then, the defense would come out while the other team would be able to march down the field. The offense seemed to give up alot when if they kept fighting, they may have won more games. You don't see Alabama players give up when they have a bad play or even lose. They keep fighting to win. Who knows if a pass here and there would have been thrown to the right player who would have caught it, there may have been more wins for UT.

I don't mean to harp on Bray but does he really think he could be drafted the way he has been acting on the field this season? I think Mr. Dooley was more than patient with him and others on the offense. I bet if they were on any other team, they would have been on the sidelines even moreso watching others playing on offense.

Luckily, the players will wise up and play better next week like they want to win, especially those that are the 'big names' and are highlighted on tv. If they don't want to play, I'm sure there are others on the team that would relish the opportunity and give it their all for the TEAM and university.

How did Tyler act? How did you expect him to act when he was benched? Did you expect him to stand there and scream his approval? Bray took his benching like a man which is all you can hope for. He stood and watched. He was cheering when the team moved the ball (bet you missed that). My question is how did his coach act? You have a QB who in three games threw 13 TDs and one int. and then you bench in the 2nd quarter after a tipped pass is intercepted. What message did that send to the player and the team?

You also blame the offense for the defense stinking it up. What are you smoking? The defense is ranked 115 in the nation and they have earned every bit of the ranking?

Now I guess Bray and company could have scored 60 a game and somehow kept the ball away by running 10 minute drives. Maybe that would have helped.

Typical UT fan who wants to blame the very players that kept us in games instead of the guys who get beat over and over again. I will bet a million dollars you blamed Arron Foster for everything that ever happen to poor coach Fulmer. You probably thought he had a bad attitude and would never make it as a pro. It was also Kelly Washingtons fault that he broke his neck and that Clausen broke his collar and the team tanked. It was their bad attitudes that caused everything that was wrong with those teams. Some of you guys take the cake.

Bottom line this coached was terrible and it showed every Saturday on the field. I wish he had been better but he was not so I am looking forward to the next guy. Its an important hire because we can ill afford to have another crappy hire like Dooley. One more hire like that and we will become Mississippi where everyone talks about the good old days.

VolBall18 writes:

Ironcity, there's one thing that is wrong. Casey Clausen was one of the worst quarterbacks UT has ever had. I always said that Fulmer should have stuck with Suggs, who eventually transferred to Ga Tech. But, yeah Clausen was pretty awful.

TKO writes:

It will be Al Golden from Miami. You heard it here first.I like Petrino, but Golden/Gruden/Mullen will be offered first.

Ironcity writes:

in response to Mikeah:

Thank God most certainly not all but most of the bad posters on this blog are not Tennessee Alumni, and most probably never set foot in a class room on campus. The comments I have read give a new meaning to the phrase “White Trash”. I agree Coach Dooley had to go, but we should all have respect for his wife and children and the job he tried to do. The comments about Coach Majors and Coach Fulmer are just simply trashy. I remember from my days in school there is a certain element of Tennessee fans, and some students unfortunately that just have no class. I was in a Fraternity and thought/think Fraternity members showed a little more sensitivity but certainly not always. Please try to show more class then we have in the past when making comments about disagreeing with decision made.
It is ok to disagree with the coaching style or decisions made but have enough class to not insult the man. These kinds of comments really make us all look bad. No matter who Mr. Hart hires some folks will not be happy. Thankfully he is not considering outside opinions on his decision. IMO we don’t need Mr. Gruden,(no college head coaching experience) we need a younger head coach with a proven winning record on a big stage. Stoops would be great if we could get him or maybe even Jimbo Fisher. Be very interesting to see. Whoever we hire we will have for a while because we cannot afford another buy out in three years.

I think Gruden would be a fantastic hire. He has coached in college at UT and Pitt. He has also won a Super bowl. Their is never a guarantee any coach will be the right hire. Fisher has struggled to win even though he appears to have the some of best talent in the country. Oklahoma fans can't wait for Stoops to go even though his track record looks great. I guess what I am saying we can all find things wrong with coaches if we look hard enough. If we go the cheap way then I like Golden or Del Rio. Who ever we hire will have my support.

TKO writes:

Whoever tracks the UT plane like they did during the Kiffen hire, you may want to watch trips to Atlanta/Miami.

Ironcity writes:

in response to VolBall18:

Ironcity, there's one thing that is wrong. Casey Clausen was one of the worst quarterbacks UT has ever had. I always said that Fulmer should have stuck with Suggs, who eventually transferred to Ga Tech. But, yeah Clausen was pretty awful.

Suggs couldn't even start for Tech. Are you confusing Casey with Rick? Casey was one tough SOB. A lot of fans didn't like him because he didn't smile and had that look but when the game was on the line he was unbelievable.

Mikeah writes:

in response to Ironcity:

I think Gruden would be a fantastic hire. He has coached in college at UT and Pitt. He has also won a Super bowl. Their is never a guarantee any coach will be the right hire. Fisher has struggled to win even though he appears to have the some of best talent in the country. Oklahoma fans can't wait for Stoops to go even though his track record looks great. I guess what I am saying we can all find things wrong with coaches if we look hard enough. If we go the cheap way then I like Golden or Del Rio. Who ever we hire will have my support.

Agree with you for the most part. Just not sure how Gruden will do in College. I will support 100% who ever we hire.

VolBall18 writes:

in response to Ironcity:

Suggs couldn't even start for Tech. Are you confusing Casey with Rick? Casey was one tough SOB. A lot of fans didn't like him because he didn't smile and had that look but when the game was on the line he was unbelievable.

No, I meant Casey. He wasn't good. He actually had great targets Stallworth, Washington, Witten, Swain, Banks, Hannon, etc. and also a great running game and defense. Kinda like McCarron. Only I think McCarron is way better. So no, he was average.

Rock85 writes:

GRUDEN!!!! CHUCKY TOP

underthehill writes:

in response to Shake_Bake:

I just hope this doesn't take too long, because we desparately need a very strong recruiting class!! Who ever the new coach is, make the decision as soon as possible so he can get to work on recruiting the right players in here!

Reading the comments of current recruits I did not see where any other schools have contacted them..is this a good or bad sign..I did notice UT still continues to list Patrick as a recruit who left Lenoir City High School and enrolled at West but did not play his Sr year..It does appear recruiting needs work..

Rock85 writes:

in response to VolBall18:

Ironcity, there's one thing that is wrong. Casey Clausen was one of the worst quarterbacks UT has ever had. I always said that Fulmer should have stuck with Suggs, who eventually transferred to Ga Tech. But, yeah Clausen was pretty awful.

WRONG CLAUSEN LOL

Rock85 writes:

in response to VolBall18:

No, I meant Casey. He wasn't good. He actually had great targets Stallworth, Washington, Witten, Swain, Banks, Hannon, etc. and also a great running game and defense. Kinda like McCarron. Only I think McCarron is way better. So no, he was average.

Ask Florida, Ga or Bama how good Casey was ICE MAN was a ROAD WARRIOR.

SavTnVol writes:

in response to Rock85:

WRONG CLAUSEN LOL

I agree, gotta be the wrong Clausen..Casey was a good one. You might want to check his records. Casey and Rick both said the best one of the group was Jimmy, but boy were they wrong! Casey was the best IMO and would love to have him back anytime!

VolBall18 writes:

in response to Rock85:

Ask Florida, Ga or Bama how good Casey was ICE MAN was a ROAD WARRIOR.

I don't have to ask. He played one year for the Amsterdam Admirals. That tells me enough.

SavTnVol writes:

The best commit about Casey was by Tim Priest. Tim once said that when Casey ran, he ran like he was wearing clown shoes on his feet...Wonder what Joe Thompson had to say about the loss to Vandy?

Orange_Juiced writes:

in response to VolBall18:

I don't have to ask. He played one year for the Amsterdam Admirals. That tells me enough.

Good college QBs don't always make it in the NFL so that premise you made is nothing more than apples and oranges. There have been a host of really good college guys that suffered in the NFL. Heath Shuler comes to mind. Heck...Tee Martin and yes...Tim Tebow both won NCs and didn't or won't make in the Pros. There are a bunch of guys who were just good solid QBs in college that didn't translate into the NFL, so your logic that "tells you enough" doesn't quite hold water. Below tells me enough that he was a good solid QB for the Vols...

http://www.utsports.com/sports/m-foot...

VolBall18 writes:

in response to Orange_Juiced:

Good college QBs don't always make it in the NFL so that premise you made is nothing more than apples and oranges. There have been a host of really good college guys that suffered in the NFL. Heath Shuler comes to mind. Heck...Tee Martin and yes...Tim Tebow both won NCs and didn't or won't make in the Pros. There are a bunch of guys who were just good solid QBs in college that didn't translate into the NFL, so your logic that "tells you enough" doesn't quite hold water. Below tells me enough that he was a good solid QB for the Vols...

http://www.utsports.com/sports/m-foot...

Again, the reason those QB's you mentioned won was because they had great TEAMS. If you relied on Shuler, Tee Martin?, and Teblow to actually win the game for you with mediocre players, they couldn't have done it. Clausen should have been a lot better than what he was with the talent he had. You just said he was a good solid quarterback for TN. You didn't say that he was a game changer. If you actually go back and watch Clausen play, he completed most of his passes on hooks. That means basically the WRs/TEs he had done most of the work for him. So, again no he wasn't that good. He had a great team. Along with Shuler, Martin, and Teblow. Actually, Teblow isn't really a QB. If you put A.J. Johnson behind the center, would you consider him one? And to all of you that say he beat Florida twice, yeah he did. But he also was winless against Georgia.

smokysbark writes:

in response to mrvol2u:

Quicker would only be better if we get the right guy!

If it comes down to the right guy or the recruiting class, I say forgo the recruiting class and get the right guy!

I think Hart has done a better job than I thought if he is getting some changes on the academic side as well as other changes made.

Cheeks may have seen the light on how much money a top football program generates for your university in ALL other areas and not just sports.

GO VOLS!!!

The recruiting class will suffer this year ... most of the top talent will be committed by the time the HC is announced. I'm not worried too much about the '13 season results. How the new coach recruits in '13/14 will be the indicator.

I agree wholeheartedly with your assessment of Cheek/Hart relationship. I think Hart must have said, ok boss, we can keep operating in the red or you can get the heck out of my way and let me get this train back on the rails while you watch the money roll in ... so get on board or GTF out of the way!

It's a new day!

smokysbark writes:

in response to Orange_Juiced:

Good college QBs don't always make it in the NFL so that premise you made is nothing more than apples and oranges. There have been a host of really good college guys that suffered in the NFL. Heath Shuler comes to mind. Heck...Tee Martin and yes...Tim Tebow both won NCs and didn't or won't make in the Pros. There are a bunch of guys who were just good solid QBs in college that didn't translate into the NFL, so your logic that "tells you enough" doesn't quite hold water. Below tells me enough that he was a good solid QB for the Vols...

http://www.utsports.com/sports/m-foot...

Agree ... Wuerffel/Palmer/Doug Johnson kicked Manning (well, the defense actually) all over the field and look how all of those turned out ...

alraguc#466367 writes:

Pat Fitzgerald of Northwestern, the Vanderbilt of the midwest. Five straight bowl appearances. Only missed out his first season. This season, the team is 8-3, with 11-point loss to Penn State, a one point loss to Nebraska and an overtime loss to Michigan. Check out his bio at http://www.nusports.com/sports/m-foot...

johnlg00 writes:

in response to VolBall18:

Ironcity, there's one thing that is wrong. Casey Clausen was one of the worst quarterbacks UT has ever had. I always said that Fulmer should have stuck with Suggs, who eventually transferred to Ga Tech. But, yeah Clausen was pretty awful.

Clausen was not the prettiest-throwing QB UT ever had, but his winning percentage is right up there with the best QBs UT has had. A lot of people didn't like his personality, just as lots don't like Bray's, but at least his teammates seemed to play well for him.

johnlg00 writes:

in response to alraguc#466367:

Pat Fitzgerald of Northwestern, the Vanderbilt of the midwest. Five straight bowl appearances. Only missed out his first season. This season, the team is 8-3, with 11-point loss to Penn State, a one point loss to Nebraska and an overtime loss to Michigan. Check out his bio at http://www.nusports.com/sports/m-foot...

I didn't read the bio you posted, but I didn't have to to know that he is from that area, was an All-American legend at NW--a place that has had few of those--and has never even been south as far as I know. I think he has done a great job at Northwestern, a really tough academic school in a very competitive conference, but I just don't think he would be interested.

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