Butch Jones selling UT tradition and new staff to recruits

Tennessee head football coach Butch Jones is introduced during the basketball game against Memphis at Thompson-Boling Arena, Friday, Jan. 4, 2012. (AMY SMOTHERMAN BURGESS/NEWS SENTINEL)

Photo by Amy Smotherman Burgess

Tennessee head football coach Butch Jones is introduced during the basketball game against Memphis at Thompson-Boling Arena, Friday, Jan. 4, 2012. (AMY SMOTHERMAN BURGESS/NEWS SENTINEL)

Coach Butch Jones will be selling the old and new Tennessee when he meets with football recruits this weekend.

"We have a tremendous deal with tradition," UT's new coach said in a Sports Page interview Friday morning. "We're talking about the new Tennessee and the old Tennessee."

The former University of Cincinnati coach has been immersed in recruiting since succeeding Derek Dooley as UT's coach.

Tennessee's currently has 18 commitments, including two junior college recruits, one of whom has signed.

"You may see one or two more from the junior college ranks," Jones said. "I believe they can help your football team.

"But we are going to win on a consistent basis with high school football players."

While Jones and his recently assembled staff have made recruiting their No. 1 priority, he also has tried to educate himself on the returning Tennessee players.

"Every time I'm in a plane, I look at our current roster, practice and game tape," he said.

But he said he would want to see a greater "body of work" — involving offseason conditioning and spring football — before judging players.

John Adams is a senior columnist. Follow him at http://twitter.com/johnadamskns.

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Comments » 51

BIVOLAR_BEARE writes:

I can't say until the product is competing on the field, But it appears that CBJ is going about recruiting in the correct manner. Just the fact that his players at Cincy applauded him for getting the UT job (an obvious step up career wise) shows he sells the university first to his recruits.

60s70s80s90s00s10sallvol writes:

This article is frankly such an indepth piece it will take me some time to absorb it all. This just in, Butch Jones will wear orange at various times throughout the recruiting process and on game days next year.

pcorange writes:

in response to BIVOLAR_BEARE:

I can't say until the product is competing on the field, But it appears that CBJ is going about recruiting in the correct manner. Just the fact that his players at Cincy applauded him for getting the UT job (an obvious step up career wise) shows he sells the university first to his recruits.

Good point.

Voltman writes:

Who in their right mind would Follow John Adams on Twitter?

Rockytop38 writes:

I just hope they don't go changing the helmets and unis'. When we see the Vols on the field we want to be able to say "That's Tennessee" Stick with what we got. Players win games.

BigToe18 writes:

The first thing i liked about HC-BJ is what he said about recruiting, you have to go out and get the best of the best thats what makes championship teams. Sounds good to me, he talks the talk hope he walks the walk..GO BIG ORANGE!!

PHAT_VOL writes:

in response to 60s70s80s90s00s10sallvol:

This article is frankly such an indepth piece it will take me some time to absorb it all. This just in, Butch Jones will wear orange at various times throughout the recruiting process and on game days next year.

LOL ! Thats funny!

What else is there to sell? How about our record of 72 & 54 over the last ten years.

GO VOLS!!!

richvol writes:

in response to 60s70s80s90s00s10sallvol:

This article is frankly such an indepth piece it will take me some time to absorb it all. This just in, Butch Jones will wear orange at various times throughout the recruiting process and on game days next year.

You are right...the quality and content of this site has declined severely over the past two years. It's pitiful now.

volvann writes:

Wow an article that published a comment by CBJ that probably every other college coach has said. Now that is quality reporting and now that I know we can read the obvious, we should easily win more games.

Olddogsrule writes:

Good grief, that's all johnnyboy took away from the interview. One would think he's only trying to fill column space; and very little at that. Great opportunity to be positive, but johnnyboy just don't have it in him. How, oh how, does he keep his job?

KNS ... FIRE JOHN ADAMS (for dereliction of duty in this article if nothing else) Sheeesh!

Rumblefish writes:

in response to Rockytop38:

I just hope they don't go changing the helmets and unis'. When we see the Vols on the field we want to be able to say "That's Tennessee" Stick with what we got. Players win games.

They just might. The University Bookstore was selling off all their stuff for a clearance sale. Alumni Hall had 40% off all their Adidas gear for several weeks in a row.

Has anybody heard rumors about Tennessee switching over to Nike? Does anybody know when the current deal with Adidas expires? I believe I remember reading about a contract extension with Adidas a year or two ago, but I'm not sure.

Besides Tennessee, Adidas also sponsors UCLA, Nebraska, Michigan, Kansas, Arkansas, Indiana, Louisville, Mississippi St., Notre Dame, Texas A&M and NC State.

And for those of you that want to dismiss uniforms in attracting recruits...read this:
http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2011...

Granted, there are some colleges that have traditional unis...Bama, Penn St, etc. But, I believe every recruiting advantage can help.

BY NO MEANS DO I WANT TO CHANGE TENNESSEE UNIFORMS. A little tweak here and there to keep them more "modern" wouldn't hurt though.

My first suggestion...get rid of the double stripes on the leg. go back to solid white with the "T" on the hip, or have one wide stripe like the one down the helmet.

Helmet stickers? Might be fun.

Wear black jerseys every home game the last weekend in Oct.

arkyvol writes:

dear ole tennessee, with its history, facilities, and neyland, would sign a fair to middlin' class if its efforts were limited to sending out postcards and leaving apps out on the reception desk. problem is that the sec is no longer a fair to middlin' conference (vandy gets it; the vols? i don't know).

Rumblefish writes:

in response to GlennFordsFoible:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Unfortunately, Butch is gonna HAVE to win with 2* and 3* recruits before more 4*/5* kids start seriously considering Tennessee again. He's stuck btwn a rock and a hard place with regards to recruiting.

BigBadVol writes:

in response to 60s70s80s90s00s10sallvol:

This article is frankly such an indepth piece it will take me some time to absorb it all. This just in, Butch Jones will wear orange at various times throughout the recruiting process and on game days next year.

LMFAO! That was about as good as it gets!

ncvol11 writes:

in response to Rumblefish:

They just might. The University Bookstore was selling off all their stuff for a clearance sale. Alumni Hall had 40% off all their Adidas gear for several weeks in a row.

Has anybody heard rumors about Tennessee switching over to Nike? Does anybody know when the current deal with Adidas expires? I believe I remember reading about a contract extension with Adidas a year or two ago, but I'm not sure.

Besides Tennessee, Adidas also sponsors UCLA, Nebraska, Michigan, Kansas, Arkansas, Indiana, Louisville, Mississippi St., Notre Dame, Texas A&M and NC State.

And for those of you that want to dismiss uniforms in attracting recruits...read this:
http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2011...

Granted, there are some colleges that have traditional unis...Bama, Penn St, etc. But, I believe every recruiting advantage can help.

BY NO MEANS DO I WANT TO CHANGE TENNESSEE UNIFORMS. A little tweak here and there to keep them more "modern" wouldn't hurt though.

My first suggestion...get rid of the double stripes on the leg. go back to solid white with the "T" on the hip, or have one wide stripe like the one down the helmet.

Helmet stickers? Might be fun.

Wear black jerseys every home game the last weekend in Oct.

I hope they stay with Adidas. They have some excellent stuff. A lot better than Nike. Let Nike have Oregon. That is cool for them but Tennessee and adidas are tradition for us.

VolunteerLifer writes:

in response to Rumblefish:

Unfortunately, Butch is gonna HAVE to win with 2* and 3* recruits before more 4*/5* kids start seriously considering Tennessee again. He's stuck btwn a rock and a hard place with regards to recruiting.

Just like Dooley was when he got here.

Rumblefish writes:

in response to ncvol11:

I hope they stay with Adidas. They have some excellent stuff. A lot better than Nike. Let Nike have Oregon. That is cool for them but Tennessee and adidas are tradition for us.

uhhh...wasn't Tennessee with Nike during the mid 90's??? Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe we were. And we were good then.

Rumblefish writes:

in response to VolunteerLifer:

Just like Dooley was when he got here.

Yep. Let's just hope Butch can get a bit more out of his players than Dooley could.

Rumblefish writes:

in response to VolunteerLifer:

Just like Dooley was when he got here.

And Dooley couldn't win where he was at. Butch has. I'll give Butch his chance b/c of his past records (regardless if they were Brian Kelley's recruits...Butch still WON with them). And Brian Kelley wasn't getting many 4*/5* players at Central Mich or Cincy either.

ULTIMATEVOLUNTEER writes:

in response to Rumblefish:

uhhh...wasn't Tennessee with Nike during the mid 90's??? Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe we were. And we were good then.

Yes UT used to be with Nike. The switch to Adidas was I believe in 1998. I spoke with Phil Knight at the UT/Oregon game a couple years ago and asked him about that. His response was UT and Fulmer had a big deal with Adidas but he would LOVE to have UT. I don't think there was much time left on the contract.

pcshowtime writes:

in response to Rockytop38:

I just hope they don't go changing the helmets and unis'. When we see the Vols on the field we want to be able to say "That's Tennessee" Stick with what we got. Players win games.

If we really want to say that is Tennessee then go back to the black shoes. I hate those orange and white shoes.

AllforTenn writes:

in response to Rumblefish:

And Dooley couldn't win where he was at. Butch has. I'll give Butch his chance b/c of his past records (regardless if they were Brian Kelley's recruits...Butch still WON with them). And Brian Kelley wasn't getting many 4*/5* players at Central Mich or Cincy either.

We are all so glad that you will give Butch his chance. I'm sure he was worried that you might not.

AllforTenn writes:

in response to Rumblefish:

uhhh...wasn't Tennessee with Nike during the mid 90's??? Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe we were. And we were good then.

So you think that had anything to do with winning and losing? Have another toke.

traderjoe writes:

in response to Rumblefish:

They just might. The University Bookstore was selling off all their stuff for a clearance sale. Alumni Hall had 40% off all their Adidas gear for several weeks in a row.

Has anybody heard rumors about Tennessee switching over to Nike? Does anybody know when the current deal with Adidas expires? I believe I remember reading about a contract extension with Adidas a year or two ago, but I'm not sure.

Besides Tennessee, Adidas also sponsors UCLA, Nebraska, Michigan, Kansas, Arkansas, Indiana, Louisville, Mississippi St., Notre Dame, Texas A&M and NC State.

And for those of you that want to dismiss uniforms in attracting recruits...read this:
http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2011...

Granted, there are some colleges that have traditional unis...Bama, Penn St, etc. But, I believe every recruiting advantage can help.

BY NO MEANS DO I WANT TO CHANGE TENNESSEE UNIFORMS. A little tweak here and there to keep them more "modern" wouldn't hurt though.

My first suggestion...get rid of the double stripes on the leg. go back to solid white with the "T" on the hip, or have one wide stripe like the one down the helmet.

Helmet stickers? Might be fun.

Wear black jerseys every home game the last weekend in Oct.

Hey, Nike has put the best uniforms on the field. If updating helps with recruting by keeping us hip, then let's do it. Somehow, I just couldn't form a positive picture of Dooley on the recruiting trail. CJ looks like a natural born salesman. He may do well in the hunt. Hope so.

Dalton writes:

I like the energy and vibe of our new coach and look forward to a product on the field that we can judge...NONE OF US KNOW HOW THIS WILL TURN OUT!!!!...if it does work out then I will be cheering our team on with pep and vigor and negavols will be underground like frozen ants...if it doesn't I will be cheering our team hoping the next staff fixes this mess and the negavols will be swarming out of their mounds biting and demanding recognition Hart will either be hailed or reviled...but none of this happens TODAY!

junkball10 writes:

in response to 60s70s80s90s00s10sallvol:

This article is frankly such an indepth piece it will take me some time to absorb it all. This just in, Butch Jones will wear orange at various times throughout the recruiting process and on game days next year.

Liked your post but we are talking about John Adams guys. Did you expect something different? Go Vols!

cyclonevol87 writes:

in response to GlennFordsFoible:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Its Witten not Whitten,you know so much about UT at least spell the names of future Hall of Fame players from UT right.

junkball10 writes:

in response to GlennFordsFoible:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Y'all ran Coach Fulmer out of town. Do you really think we'd be in this bad of shape if he were still here? How's all that hope and change working out for ya? Go Vols!

6972 writes:

in response to junkball10:

Y'all ran Coach Fulmer out of town. Do you really think we'd be in this bad of shape if he were still here? How's all that hope and change working out for ya? Go Vols!

I'm not anti-Fulmer. I am thankful for the victories over the years. However, it seems strange that he has had no offers (to my knowledge) since leaving UT. What do we make of that?

oldster writes:

in response to GlennFordsFoible:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Doug Atkins was a walk on. More recently, Johnny Football was a three star recruit and Michael Palardy, Bryce Brown, and the Apopka thief were all 4 and 5 stars.

oldster writes:

in response to Rumblefish:

Unfortunately, Butch is gonna HAVE to win with 2* and 3* recruits before more 4*/5* kids start seriously considering Tennessee again. He's stuck btwn a rock and a hard place with regards to recruiting.

Yep, the rich get richer and the poor get poorer.

BIVOLAR_BEARE writes:

in response to Rumblefish:

And Dooley couldn't win where he was at. Butch has. I'll give Butch his chance b/c of his past records (regardless if they were Brian Kelley's recruits...Butch still WON with them). And Brian Kelley wasn't getting many 4*/5* players at Central Mich or Cincy either.

Ole Miss isn't exactly a name brand in CFB since about 1965, but they are holding their own in national recruiting..An energetic HC can do wonders with impressionable young athletes.

rb4346 writes:

in response to GlennFordsFoible:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

First and foremost is Derek Dooley gave it his best shot and it didn't work out so he is gone. Give CBJ a chance with his recruiting, I feel that he will get his share of 4 and 5 stars in the future if we give him a chance and he starts winning which I believe will happen. But after a late start in recruiting this year he has to try and get players who will fit his system, even though some of them may be 2 stars. I say give the coaches and players a chance before we start knocking them. This is my opinion but I hope others will feel the same. All I can say is GBO!!!

cooperF2 writes:

in response to Rumblefish:

uhhh...wasn't Tennessee with Nike during the mid 90's??? Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe we were. And we were good then.

I'm pretty sure whatever deal they had with Nike back then was for footwear only. The uniforms were manufactured by Knoxville-based Sports Belle for over a decade before the switch to adidas was made in 1997.

Here's a link to a 2004 NY Times story on Sports Belle. It mentions UT dropping them and going with adidas.

http://goo.gl/6QRgJ

GOJO writes:

in response to oldster:

Doug Atkins was a walk on. More recently, Johnny Football was a three star recruit and Michael Palardy, Bryce Brown, and the Apopka thief were all 4 and 5 stars.

olster: You reached back over half a century to pull up Doug Atkins. I thought I was probably the only one on this site ancient enough to remember Doug.
Technically, you are probably correct that he was a walk on in Football. However, he came to U.T. on a basketball scholarship. The General, noticing his size & agility, just plain stole him from the basketball coach.
I believe he also won the Southeastern Conference high jump title while at UT.

Rumblefish writes:

in response to cooperF2:

I'm pretty sure whatever deal they had with Nike back then was for footwear only. The uniforms were manufactured by Knoxville-based Sports Belle for over a decade before the switch to adidas was made in 1997.

Here's a link to a 2004 NY Times story on Sports Belle. It mentions UT dropping them and going with adidas.

http://goo.gl/6QRgJ

Thanks for the info man. 'preciate it.

Rumblefish writes:

in response to AllforTenn:

So you think that had anything to do with winning and losing? Have another toke.

I wish I still toked. I miss it.

But, Tennessee's sponsor has nothing directly to do with winning on the field. Just pointing out the COINCIDENCE. But I guess you didn't get that and decided you wanted to throw around your online muscles.

Congrats to you. We're all sooooooo impressed.

VolsFanInAfghanistan writes:

in response to GlennFordsFoible:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Since I've started reading the post on here not once have I seen you say something positive about the Volunteer football team. People have asked you time and time again questions about your post and you ignore them. Everyone on here that posts a positive comment about our football team has to come back and see you and your cronies start up with the name calling and negative posting. Now we're all fools for wanting to believe in our team and have something positive to look forward to. It's bad enough we have to read the papers about how our country is going down the drain, the economy sucks, and our troops are being MURDERED by the same people we are trying to help, but no, you sir along with your anti-Hart, anti Cheek cronies can't for once just come on here and make posts that would give some of us a little bright news as to having a chance at a deceit football season. Thanks. Its football sir and I thought it was supposed to be fun and give us all something to cheer for and retell stories about our Volunteer football team.

SouthPaVol writes:

in response to GOJO:

olster: You reached back over half a century to pull up Doug Atkins. I thought I was probably the only one on this site ancient enough to remember Doug.
Technically, you are probably correct that he was a walk on in Football. However, he came to U.T. on a basketball scholarship. The General, noticing his size & agility, just plain stole him from the basketball coach.
I believe he also won the Southeastern Conference high jump title while at UT.

We might see another Doug Atkins-like player crossing over from another sport and making a big splash for the Vols in a new TE signee-Woody Quinn. He has two stars, so some are concerned--actually he was a volleyball player instead of basketball. On the brighter side, the guy is 6'6" and can leap out of the gym! According to reports, he has good hands, agile, and quite an athlete. Would like to see him have a Doug Atkins-like career. Go Vols!

volthrunthru#658770 writes:

in response to BigToe18:

The first thing i liked about HC-BJ is what he said about recruiting, you have to go out and get the best of the best thats what makes championship teams. Sounds good to me, he talks the talk hope he walks the walk..GO BIG ORANGE!!

Way to go. That is exactly what I believe---he talks the talk. Let's hope he walks the walk.

I am concerned because, since he is a sharp song and dance guy, he is quick to pick up on what fans want to hear---and talk it to them.

For instance, he said he & his coaches thought they could win the SEC using athletes from the state of Tennessee. (He promised the greatest staff in the USA, but hired his staff from Cincinnati. Go figure.)

Phillip Fulmer, THE NEXT DAY, after meeting with him, said Jones had never been forced to recruit nationally, making certain that he (Fulmer) said NATIONAL recruiting is necessary in order to win at UT.

Jones only national recruit so far is a 2-star he brought with him from Cincinnati---to be coached by the best staff in the USA, of course.

Notice that Jones followed Kelly, from Cent.Mich to Cin. When Kelly got good jobs, Jones moved up to Head Coach. Now it is revealed that Kelly has been covering up a lie by his star player---in effect that Kelly has been saying one thing, but another thing is the truth.

And Jones is promising everybody what they want to hear.

Just what exactly did we hire here. Whatever it is, we need to keep cutting the cards.

Sleight of hand may be good at card games, but it probably won't win in the SEC. There has to be talent from somewhere else than the Cincinnati coaching tree and Tennessee High Schools to win an SEC Championship---or even to post a winning record in the SEC.

volthrunthru#658770 writes:

in response to GlennFordsFoible:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

You, sir, are a prophet. You have described exactly what is up with EVERY major sport at UT, except women's basketball, where Hart forced out Pat Summitt.

Don't worry, though, UT only spends $125MM per year to do that, and has paid off enough fired coaches the past several years that reserves are down to almost nothing.

That's okay; as soon as the FB sanctions and Basketball sanctions and baseball sanctions expire---and the moral turpitude furor abates over the Swimming/Diving Coach---and the fans forget the apology from the Baseball coach for the horrid performance last season---and forget Dooley, Pearl, Kiffen, Martin's 0-3 SEC Basketball record---

then everything will be okay, and UT will be ready to go head-to-head and win SEC championships as the Vols did with Phillip Fulmer.

exlineman writes:

UTFans, something that might interest you is a program called SPECIAL ADMISSIONS THAT 7 schools don't participate in UNIV. OF TN.,TEXAS,AIRFORCE, CONNECTICUT, KANSAS STATE, PURDUE AND VIRGINIA. The biggest violator in the nation is none other than ALABAMA. Two other programs close to them are Oregon and Ga. Tech. From 2004-2006 alabama had 19 football players enrolled under this program. This explains alot as to how Al. getting the cream of the crop. Vanderbilt with its Peabody connection is in this same method of admmions for athletes.

In 2007, Steve Spurrier threatened to quit S. C. if their admissions standard wasn't lowered. One player tried twice to get into S. C. and on third try after standards were lowered was none other than All American Eric Norwood who recently graduated.

All of this explains how so many teams are out recruiting our coaches. COACH JONES NEEDS TO SET DOWN WITH CHEEK AND HART IMMIDATELY AND DEMAND THAT THEY LOWER THEIR STANDARDS FOR THE SAME REASONS. This explains why Vanderbilt is getting athletes that we can't get.

Northern Ill. univ. has a similar program called CHANCE PROGRAM. The Univ of Minn. has a program call ACCESS TO SUCCESS WHICH is similar.

JIM HASLAM AND some of the people putting the money into UT need to step up and put pressure on CHEEK THAT HE IS GONE, if this doesn't change. This is the only way we can contue in the SEC.

Go Big Orange.

exlineman writes:

UT FANS; There are 77 of 92 bcs schools using the SPECIAL ADMISSIONS for their athletes.

rbwtn writes:

Honestly Tyler Bray could have used this coach He defiantly would have straightened him out. Sorry Bray you left.

volthrunthru#658770 writes:

in response to 6972:

I'm not anti-Fulmer. I am thankful for the victories over the years. However, it seems strange that he has had no offers (to my knowledge) since leaving UT. What do we make of that?

Thanks for saying "to my knowledge."

junkball10 writes:

in response to 6972:

I'm not anti-Fulmer. I am thankful for the victories over the years. However, it seems strange that he has had no offers (to my knowledge) since leaving UT. What do we make of that?

Maybe he has has offers and turned them down. Either way he is a Vol thru and thru. He is a good man and was a good coach for Tennessee. He was one year removed from the SEC championship game. His last 4 years record was better than the most recent 4 years.

OrangePride writes:

Well, perhaps not a lot of "meat on the bone" in this article, but it confirms exactly what CBJ said he was going to do when he got here....sell the great tradition, great facilities, and GREAT opportunities for playing time in front of the best fans in the country. Perhaps not as fast as some on here want, but this approach is solid and WILL bear fruit as we go forward. And for all you who are wailing and gnashing your teeth about the lack of 4* and 5* commits just now, calm down. This coach and staff know the kind of player that will fit their system and their profile of just what it means to be a VOL. We still have several JUCO prospects that look great and I believe CBJ and staff will do everything possible to fill us in with quality players. Let's just support them, stay positive, and wait and see. Y'all wanted Dooley gone and you got what you wanted...so get behind this staff and support this team!

BIVOLAR_BEARE writes:

in response to OrangePride:

Well, perhaps not a lot of "meat on the bone" in this article, but it confirms exactly what CBJ said he was going to do when he got here....sell the great tradition, great facilities, and GREAT opportunities for playing time in front of the best fans in the country. Perhaps not as fast as some on here want, but this approach is solid and WILL bear fruit as we go forward. And for all you who are wailing and gnashing your teeth about the lack of 4* and 5* commits just now, calm down. This coach and staff know the kind of player that will fit their system and their profile of just what it means to be a VOL. We still have several JUCO prospects that look great and I believe CBJ and staff will do everything possible to fill us in with quality players. Let's just support them, stay positive, and wait and see. Y'all wanted Dooley gone and you got what you wanted...so get behind this staff and support this team!

Great post..

HighPlainsVol writes:

in response to oldster:

Doug Atkins was a walk on. More recently, Johnny Football was a three star recruit and Michael Palardy, Bryce Brown, and the Apopka thief were all 4 and 5 stars.

You can come up with all the examples of 4/5* failures and 2/3* greats you want, but the teams with the 4/5* recruits will do better than those who don't have them. Bamer for instance. Recruiting services and coaches can be totally wrong in evaluating talent and character, but, I sure would like to get some 5* recruits with the schollys available.

johnlg00 writes:

in response to GlennFordsFoible:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

I think the idea is that in UT's present situation, Jones HAS to start with the guys who want to be at UT because of what IT represents and field the best team you can with them in order to convince other, better players to want to come to UT because JONES is there. You have to start from where you are instead of where you wish to be. There is also a fine line between making the guys you have and are getting glad they came and willing to work hard--and making the fans glad to get them--and presenting them as world-beaters in the absence of other evidence. High aspirations are great but you can't achieve them by wishing, either in recruiting or on the field.

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