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Discussion in 'DVU' started by Dirty Ears Bill, Jul 28, 2016.
How Did Clemson Rob Us Blind?
How Did Clemson Rob Us Blind?
How Did Clemson Rob Us Blind?
Bet they've gone back and edited whatever they said when Higgins committed
Quite the fanbase.
I heard Dabo say....
That was a fun read, especially the parts where they now have to admit Dabo is a great coach.
Wait, who's the magical DL Butch Jones brought in that's their best in history?
Derek Barnett. Broke Reggie White's sack record. He's really good
What's crazy is he was committed to vandy but then James franklin went to penn st
Originally Posted by vol72:
Had Butch pushed for Trevor Lawrence, we would have had a commitment. Butch did not show Trevor the love. This is a Butch issue, not so much a Clemson issue.
Would Butch turn down the next Peyton Manning because he did not fit his system?
Originally Posted by touch44:
I hear locally here in Oak Ridge... since the flip he has been driving a Lexus, all bs aside.
Nice. We're classing up the ride from chargers to Lexus
Dye for Etienne? Deal
UT is the rival we deserve. These guys don't get it
NewSpring's tentacles are far reaching obviously.
Dang a double post
For today's first shitter reading, I took a trip back to Feb 2016 on Volquest's Higgins thread. Some gems.
None of these kids local kids will sign with Clemson. Let them have their fun.
Yup, he just wants to take his visits and enjoy the process. I'd give it a 95% chance he ends up a Vol.
Originally Posted by AV_12
They will be a playoff team again... There's a lot of pressure on us to prove we are really back
I wouldn't be so sure about that.
Check the date.
This pleases the loins.
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Butch is Dabo's b**ch. Dabo probably laughs his ass off when a come comes to town and says he is considering TN.
So Tennessee fans are bunch of snowflakes and want Shannon Terry, CEO of 247Sports fired over 2 articles.
Article 1 in December - http://southcarolina.247sports.com/...see-Volunteers-football-under-Butch--49621786
'The culture is a disaster:' Jones, Vols trending the wrong way
How did we arrive at this juncture, with the 2016 season serving to again stir angst and uncertainty on Rocky Top?
Travis Haney - Dec 7, 2016
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Four years ago this week, Butch Jones arrived at Tennessee bubbling with optimism as he greeted the challenge of repairing and resurrecting a storied-but-beaten-down football program.
“We’ll be working to be champions each and every day,” Jones told reporters in December 2012. “We will be a champion in everything we do.”
That rings painfully familiar to Tennessee supporters. It turns out Jones’ recently ridiculed message — that the Volunteers’ senior class had won the “championship of life” — was consistent with things he had said from the very beginning.
The marked difference in reception is related, clearly, to the current climate. Fans were left deeply disappointed this fall that the Vols had fallen short of the stated goal of reaching the SEC Championship Game and at least competing for a spot in the College Football Playoff.
Even those inside the football building had acknowledged in past seasons that, given a veteran nucleus and improving talent, 2016 was the year Jones’ tenure had been building toward.
Yet once those goals were gone for the team, Jones had failed to connect with fans in that moment of frustration.
“You talk about the time and place to say something like that - and that is not what our fans wanted to hear,” one Tennessee administrative source told 247Sports, referring to the “champions of life” comment. “That will never go away. That soundbite will never go away.”
Jones evidently failed to adequately prepare his team that week, as well. Those same angry fans reached a fury a few days later as they watched Vanderbilt dominate Tennessee late, outscoring the Volunteers 21-3 in the second half, for a 45-34 victory.
“I don’t know why,” one Vols staffer told 247Sports, “but it meant more to them. It’s like they didn’t understand what was out there.”
That allusion was made in reference to the loss bumping the team from a spot in the Sugar Bowl - what would have been UT’s first appearance in that revered game since 1990. Instead of New Orleans and a highly visible New Year’s Six game, now Tennessee will not leave the state; it plays Nebraska on Dec. 30 in the Music City Bowl in Nashville.
UT started the season 5-0 only to finish it 8-4. That’s after Tennessee had incrementally improved in each of Jones’ seasons, going from five to seven to nine victories in his first three years. Even with a bowl win to cap 2016, the Volunteers would only equal their 2015 win total.
To be sure, losses to South Carolina and Vanderbilt, teams that finished 6-6, would make this nine-win season feel very different than the one in 2015.
During a recent visit, a college football source said it appeared as if everyone in the building was in the dumps.
“I think that place can be so great. I really do.” he said. “But it just looked like everyone there had been punched right in the face. It was bad.”
When asked to comment about the season or Jones, outgoing AD Dave Hart declined through athletic department spokesman Ryan Robinson.
(Photo: Photos by USAT)
In the past few weeks, 247Sports has talked to dozens of former and current coaches, players and administrators at Tennessee. We have worked to take the temperature of a place again trending down on the national and SEC landscapes.
The bottom line: Doubt always existed regarding Jones, but it’s now rushing in waves.
He’s rightly credited for cleaning up the personnel mess Derek Dooley created and left behind. He is generally liked on a personal level within the building, with one administrator calling him a “fundamentally good person.” But the sense is that the 48-year-old, fourth-year coach is not capable of leading Tennessee to be a champion of anything substantive on a football field.
“I think the clock has started and we’re facing change again,” one Tennessee source told 247Sports.
One former player, though, thought that would be a mistake.
“There’s so much negativity that I’m afraid we’re going to run off a guy that we shouldn’t,” said former Vols defensive lineman Daniel Hood, who played for Lane Kiffin, Derek Dooley and Jones. “If he wanted to go somewhere else, I don’t think anyone could blame him. I don’t think there’s enough appreciation for the job he’s done.”
Those close to Jones paint the picture of a good man with good intentions — but one who struggles with insecurity.
“Butch is not very comfortable in his own skin,” one source told us. “Until he has that, he’ll just never be a great coach. He’s not comfortable in his own skin in recruiting, play-calling, organization ...
“He’s great in a small setting, but he’s just not a comfortable guy.”
Jones won at Central Michigan and Cincinnati, but Tennessee is his first Power 5-level job.
“It’s like he doesn’t think he should be there,” the source said. “It’s like he doesn’t think he belongs. And that permeates through the program. Everyone feels that.”
Another source inside the building wondered if this point — 29-21 in four seasons — constituted a career crossroads for Jones.
“I think Butch is still growing as a coach, but he needs to make a decision that this is the level he wants to be at,” the source said. “I’m not sure that it is.”
The source added that Jones tendency to bicker with reporters is indicative of a coach unsure of himself and his position.
“Why would you lecture the media?” the source said. “You can’t have a slogan that says ‘Own It’ and then not own it when it comes time. People will follow true leaders through brick walls, but if you talk and don’t back it up, you turn over your shoulder and no one is there.”
But how did we arrive at this juncture, with the 2016 season serving to again stir angst and uncertainty on Rocky Top?
After all, when Jones was hired, he appeared and sounded like just the shot of positivity that was so sorely needed following Dooley’s 15-21 mark in three seasons.
It was the program’s third coaching change in five years. UT had only two coaches, Johnny Majors and Phillip Fulmer, for the 30 years prior to that. Morale had never been lower in this modern era, and that particularly manifested itself in recruiting.
Despite being the lifeblood of any successful program, especially in the SEC, it’s widely known that Dooley mangled recruiting and the roster suffered for it.
That’s the decaying fixer-upper that Jones walked into, smiling and spouting catchphrases that came across as genuine and endearing, even if a bit over-the-top. “Brick by Brick” was the most iconic, a nod toward the construction project ahead of Jones and his staff.
The foundation was recruiting, and the early staffs quickly turned that narrative. After a 247Sports top-25 class in Year 1, they then followed with two top-10 classes, No. 7 in 2014 and No. 4 in 2015 per the 247Sports Composite Rankings, to bolster talent. But those star-filled recruiting classes also increased expectations.
With veteran quarterback Joshua Dobbs and a defense with All-SEC talent at every level, momentum was building toward the 2016 season. Even with a brutal four-game stretch of Florida, at Georgia, at Texas A&M and Alabama in the middle of the fall, the sense was that a 10-2 season would get the Volunteers into the SEC title game with an outside shot at a playoff berth.
That would’ve been correct, as it turns out, but the team squandered the Eastern Division at South Carolina and then blew a shot at the Sugar Bowl at Vanderbilt.
The South Carolina loss came after a bye week.
“I have no explanation for that one,” one UT source said. “We just weren’t going to win that game no matter what.”
The Vols did end an 11-game losing streak to division rival Florida, and they did beat Georgia with a Hail Mary. But make no mistake that in a year perceived both internally and externally as a “prove-it” season, Jones’ Vols proved they were not ready for title contention.
Looking back, several people associated with the program tied the underachieving 2016 season to discipline issues stemming from a staff change earlier in the year.
Strength coach Dave Lawson, who had worked with Jones for nearly a decade, was phased out in the spring. Lawson was replaced by his top assistant, Michael Szerszen.
Some sources told us Lawson tired of Jones meddling with his program, with resulting friction sometimes causing the two to butt heads. Others told us that veteran players partially influenced the final decision to fire Lawson; they didn’t like Lawson and wanted him out. The news of Lawson’s dismissal was first reported in April.
Hood, the former Volunteers defensive lineman, said Lawson was “hands down” the best strength coach he had at Tennessee. And due to the three staff changes during his playing career, Hood had five different strength coaches.
Without Lawson, who is also widely respected in the coaching industry, the strength program wobbled and discipline waned along with it.
“The effort in the weight room wasn’t up to an SEC standard,” one Tennessee source said, adding that basic training elements were missing.
Those sources told us that spring practice suffered as a result, as did training during the summer months. Something seemed off in preseason camp, as well.
“In the progression of a team, we didn’t fulfill some of the necessary steps,” a source close to the team said. “We didn’t give ourselves a regular season.”
A central theme, represented there, is a culture that allotted players — especially veteran players who were pieces of those top-rated recruiting classes — too much control.
“It was appeasing them rather than toughening them up,” one UT staffer said.
Multiple people close to the program thought it went back to promises made during the recruiting process, an enablement of players who were already entitled due to high school hype. There was no de-recruitment, in other words.
“Certain guys had more of a voice than they deserve,” a source close to the team said. “Certain guys would become team captains even though they didn’t earn it. When that happens, it dissolves trust the rest of the team has in you.”
A few former players and the media relations office refuted these claims.
“I don’t see any scenario where I believe there would be that type of favoritism. I just can’t see that,” said Hood, who played for Jones in his first season, 2013. “I love the guy. I could say hands down that of every single coach I played for, that was the one staff that really got it from the top down.”
Reported facts from the 2016 season, however, seem to back those saying there were internal issues that undermined ultimate success:
Injuries riddled the team, particularly on the defensive side, but sources told us that philosophical squabbles between defensive assistants also undermined performance.
Receiver Preston Williams, citing a lack of targets, decided to transfer midseason, before playing No. 1 Alabama in one of the biggest home games in years at Neyland Stadium.
Running back Jalen Hurd, one of the highest-rated recruits Jones has signed, decided to leave the team midseason, saying he would transfer to play a different position.
Defensive lineman Jonathan Kongbo, sources said, all but refused to play tackle, leaving less talented players to fill the spots when players were injured.
Multiple players were suspended or dismissed for drug-related issues, a source said — though that isn’t uncommon in major programs. (And the Vols did avoid arrests, one UT official pointed out.)
Sensing the vibe put off by the veterans, sources indicated that some freshmen, including ones getting reps, were lackadaisical in their effort to learn. A coach said one freshman, who played a lot of snaps, was unable to recognize basic scheme principles because of a lack of work ethic.
“The culture is a disaster,” said someone who works in the football building.
For now, Jones is still on the job. A $10 million buyout and Tennessee’s uncertain athletic director situation make a move all but impossible, even amid profound frustration.
Is there hope for 2017? Or is this a matter of time and buyout arithmetic?
For one, sources have told us that the staff will look different.
Notably, GoVols247 has reported that Los Angeles Rams strength coach Rock Gullickson, a longtime associate of Jones’, is a frontrunner to take over the strength and conditioning program. There’s optimism that Gullickson, or whoever takes over the department, will again restore toughness and discipline.
Also, sources said many of the players who were “coddled” are not returning. The sense is that a team with fewer stars “might actually play as a team.” But one source wanted to be clear that several Vols veterans in 2016, such as Dobbs and end Derek Barnett on defense, were quality leaders.
“We had some guys who showed up to work every day,” the source said. “I just wish we had more of them.”
Additionally, as many as four assistant coaches could be out, though 247Sports has already reported that neither offensive coordinator Mike DeBord nor defensive coordinator Bob Shoop are expected to be fired. It’s still possible that DeBord retires or is reassigned, sources have told us.
The AD piece of the puzzle could soon be settled, as well. Sources have indicated to 247Sports that things are progressing toward Chattanooga AD David Blackburn being hired within weeks to replace the retiring Dave Hart at Tennessee.
A source said Blackburn has been in contact with UT administrators in the past week. He also spoke last week with Jones, a source told 247Sports.
The well-liked, highly respected Blackburn graduated from Tennessee in 1990 and worked in the athletic department until 2013, meaning his time did overlap some with Jones’.
At Chattanooga, Blackburn has excelled in fundraising, but he has also made significant coaching hires, particularly in men’s basketball. Will Wade went 40-25 in two seasons before taking the VCU job. Wade’s replacement, Matt McCall, then went 29-6 and reached the NCAA Tournament. The school’s football team has made the FCS playoffs in each of the past three seasons.
Those close to the Tennessee football program believe Blackburn returning to Knoxville would be the best-case AD scenario for Jones.
“He could help Butch. He could help him tremendously,” one source said, “because I don’t know that Butch is fully ready to handle this offseason. (Blackburn) would give Butch every chance to be successful.”
Whether it’s Blackburn or someone else, it remains to be seen if Jones can do enough in 2017 to save his job.
“Are you willing to learn and grow? Are you going to trust the right people to help you?” one of the Tennessee sources said. “The margin of error has gotten remarkably slim now.
“If he’s going to have that eureka moment, it has to happen now.”
Travis Haney @TheBigSpur247
Article 2 - http://southcarolina.247sports.com/...appen-in-the-SEC-East-Plus-Vandy-and-51681652
The Inside Read: Dissecting the SEC East, other buzz
Taking stock of the SEC West, plus notes on Washington's hire that has people talking and how Nashville's bid for an MLS club affects Vanderbilt.
Travis Haney - Mar 9, 9:40 AM
Georgia will likely be the prohibitive favorite this fall in the SEC’s Eastern Division, but it’s a division in which the favorites seem to rarely win in the end. That’s in large part due to the fact that there has been no clear separation by the division’s top three — Florida, Georgia and Tennessee — even though there should be, based on recruiting geography (UF and UGA) and/or internal resources such as top-notch facilities (UT).
It’s a division in college football that seems to be stuck at a perpetual crossroads, with no one program really taking the lead the way that Alabama has in the West.
Florida appeared on the right track under Urban Meyer, but he departed following a pair of national championships due to health reasons. Florida under Jim McElwain again has the most recent success, with consecutive SEC East titles, but the perception, both in the sport and by many Gators fans, is that UF backed into those appearances in Atlanta.
McElwain appeared on paper to be a fit, someone who had success offensively under Nick Saban and then on his own at Colorado State. But offense — and particularly finding a quarterback — has been continually elusive, as it was for Meyer at the end and the entirety of Will Muschamp’s stay.
Florida’s quarterback enigma remains one of the biggest mysteries in college football, and McElwain is left hopeful that one of the program’s young passers, Feleipe Franks or Kyle Trask, takes a step toward redeeming the offense.
“With all the talent in that state, how it can it be miss after miss (at QB)?” one agent asked us last week in Indianapolis during the NFL Combine.
But industry sources remain skeptical that will happen, placing McElwain and his staff closer to the hot seat than becoming the standard in the division.
It turns out that Meyer and Steve Spurrier rather spoiled the fans with offensive prowess.
Compounding that frustration is that McElwain has a new boss. AD Scott Stricklin’s stamp and reputation is now on the line at UF.
Aforementioned Georgia has the earmarks of the program most likely to step out as a leader in the division. But coaches and other sources remain uncertain of Kirby Smart’s ceiling at his alma mater.
Peers are quick to tip their hat to Smart and his staff for signing this year’s No. 3 recruiting class in the 247Sports Composite Team Recruiting Rankings. Incredibly, Georgia signed 13 of the state’s top 20 players.
But there’s no proof to this point that they’ll know how to turn recruiting wins into football wins.
“He’s a seven-win coach right now,” one SEC assistant said, referring to the Bulldogs’ 7-5 regular-season mark. He added that the Year 1 losses to Vanderbilt and Georgia Tech only increase the pressure in replacing a successful coach, Mark Richt. “We are only as good as the number of games we win. You can’t predict much of anything (in coaching) until you’ve seen it happen for the first time.”
Of the programs in the East, coaches and other sources were most critical at Tennessee’s inability to break through the past couple of seasons with a veteran quarterback and an improving roster. It’s no secret that Butch Jones is facing pressure as new AD John Currie arrives.
“I think he’s been benefitted from that (AD change),” one SEC assistant told us. “If they had a stable AD, I bet he’s gone. I know a lot of coaches who feel like they’re kind of taking it easy on him. It’s been there for the taking for them. They never took it.”
We’d say the window might be closing, but that would require one of these programs actually emerging on a consistent basis. Until that happens, the chance for opportunity remains for the Volunteers, as it does everyone.
But one coach did note that Jones and Tennessee fell short with an abnormally talented group of in-state recruits. The Vols snagged elite tackle prospect Trey Smith, but many high-end prospects left the state. Some never considered Tennessee.
Jones dismissed it, crediting the new signees’ “five-star hearts.”
The bottom line: Other coaches are confused why Tennessee has not done more, given the best resources in the division. Soon, they suspect, it will be Currie’s charge to find someone who can properly leverage the advantages that UT does have.
South Carolina might actually have the most optimism in the division after surprising to reach a bowl game in Will Muschamp’s first season. Both Georgia (Jacob Eason) and South Carolina (Jake Bentley) have unparalleled quarterback stability for the next two or three seasons.
Still, coaches and others are skeptical about South Carolina’s ability to recruit at the level necessary to compete for championships. It’s always been the rub with the job, though Muschamp and his staff have been aggressive since arriving. New facilities have greatly upgraded the school’s ability to sway recruits.
Kentucky has some positive vibes brewing, as well, having reached its first bowl game under Mark Stoops. But it’s the same story as the Gamecocks, as far as recruiting: Even given a solid signing day showing for the Wildcats - and they’ve had a few under Stoops - it remains an uphill climb for high-level success.
Vanderbilt and Missouri feel like afterthoughts to coaches and industry sources at this point, with the Tigers particularly disappointing after consecutive division titles early in their SEC history.
So does anyone in the division wish to step forward, or will it continue to be a conference dominated by the SEC West? Florida and Georgia’s spending trends projects well for closing the gap — and Tennessee has spent at a high level for years — but questions surrounding the coaching staffs continue to persist within industry circles.
Coaches and industry sources sent out a flurry of texts when Washington announced the late-February hire of Baylor’s Matt Lubick as an offensive assistant. But the move made sense, even if it capped off a dizzying couple of months.
Lubick had been let go at Oregon when head coach Mark Helfrich was fired. He landed initially at Ole Miss as its receivers coach, only to leap to Baylor after a very short stay in Oxford.
When Chris Petersen reached out with an offer to return to the Pac-12 and a co-coordinator role, it was impossible to say no … even if he’d committed to join the staffs in Oxford and Waco in short succession.
Right now, Lubick’s name is slightly damaged in coaching circles. Anyone who makes two jumps like that would be questioned. But think about it: He avoided probation at Ole Miss and a significant administrative and football rebuild at Baylor to join a program that just played in the College Football Playoff.
The timing was awkward, but Lubick — considered a rising star in the profession before all the musical chairs — made a decision that was best for him and his family. Hard to fault a guy for that. And agents sensed that all will be forgiven, and likely forgotten, if Lubick stays with Petersen for a while.
We stopped by Bobby Dodd Stadium earlier this week to find a different-looking playing surface. The field was wider, nearly to the brick retaining walls, and nets had taken the place of the traditional golden goal posts.
Georgia Tech is sharing its space with the new Atlanta United FC MLS club. The United had its first game Sunday night, drawing a raucous 55,000 fans to Bobby Dodd.
“All I know is I saw piles of beer bottles when I got to work Monday morning,” one Tech staffer said. “There was definitely a party before, during and after the game. I think they almost won, too.”
A friend of ours said it was one of the top 5-attended soccer games of the weekend in the entire world. The United, another friend said, has sold 23,000 tickets, showing a deep passion for the sport in some growing metro areas.
The MLS team will eventually move to its new home; it intends to share the immaculate Mercedes-Benz facility with the Atlanta Falcons. Until then, Bobby Dodd will double as a soccer pitch.
It’s an interesting stadium-share, and one being reportedly considered by Nashville, a city attempting to woo an MLS franchise to replicate the success in Atlanta.
Vanderbilt and those in the city supporting a soccer club, including mayor Megan Barry, are kicking around the idea of a mixed-use facility near the fairgrounds, just south of downtown. It would be a couple of miles from Vanderbilt’s campus, but it’s certainly something for Vandy to think about given the modest condition of its current facility. It’s a creative way in which the school could catch up with some SEC brethren.
Travis Haney @TheBigSpur247
Here is the thread:
Calling For Shannon Terry's Resignation
Those are some sensitive hillbillies.
The guy reported the truth. How are they thinking they can force the company to fire him?
What's the cliffs on all that? UT fans still support Butch so they don't like the hit pieces? That's what I gathered.
That's surprising. We hated Bowden and Dabo at first. We would have praised hit pieces. You'd think that group would hate Butch by now
I know it has been mentioned plenty of times, but it really is astounding:
That's pretty impressive