Published: Fri, December 08, 2017
Sport | By Wendy Sparks

Vols name Pruitt new Head Coach

Vols name Pruitt new Head Coach

An athletics director was suspended, a hall of fame coach was elevated to his position and after countless conversations, the Vols end up with a head coach born and raised in the state of Alabama.

A news conference is planned for Thursday in Knoxville to introduce Pruitt, who replaces Butch Jones.

Pruitt spent two seasons as Georgia's defensive coordinator from 2014 to 2015 before returning to Tuscaloosa for the 2016 season. He left to become Florida State's defensive coordinator in 2013 and won a title in his one year with the Seminoles. As a DC, he's probably one of the best I've been coached by. After serving as the Bears' defensive line coach for four years, he worked as the defensive line coach and defensive run game coordinator at Washington from 2012-13.

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Throughout his impressive time as an assistant coach, Pruitt has coached 34 National Football League draft picks. His big break came again at Alabama when Nick Saban hired him for an off-field job in 2007 when Pruitt was the Hoover High School defensive coordinator. He also had a previous stint at Alabama where he served as the Crimson Tide's secondary coach from 2010-12.

Pruitt is 43 years old and a native of Alabama. This will be Pruitt's first head coaching job as he looks to replace Butch Jones who was sacked on November 12 after going 34-27 over five seasons. Tennessee went 4-8 this season and set a school record for losses.

Tennessee was close to hiring Ohio State defensive coordinator Greg Schiano on November 26 before that deal fell through amid a public backlash.

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According to, Fulmer had second interviews with Auburn defensive coordinator Kevin Steele, Georgia defensive coordinator Mel Tucker and Pruitt, who was eventually dubbed as the next head football coach. Pruitt's hire could be made official as early as Friday, per FOX Sports' Bruce Feldman.

Tennessee's coaching search then ranged from Oklahoma State's Mike Gundy, Duke's David Cutcliffe, Purdue's Jeff Brohm, North Carolina State's Dave Doeren and Washington State's Mike Leach until athletic director John Currie was sacked last week.

Anyway, here's what we think Pruitt's staff could look like at Tennessee.

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