Tennessee recruit: Butch Jones 'told me to find a place to go'

13 November, 2017, 01:53 | Author: Edward Fernandez
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Jones was hired to coach the Volunteers in December 2012, following the team's three losing seasons under Derek Dooley. But a low-point was reached on Saturday, with a 50-17 loss to Missouri to drop the Tennessee Volunteers to 4-6 this season and 0-6 in the SEC, and Jones was let go on Sunday morning.

Tennessee went 9-4 the next two seasons and finished both years ranked nationally, but those seasons are generally viewed as underachieving without an appearance in the SEC championship game given the Vols roster compared to the rest of a down SEC East. "I know Coach Jones will be successful moving forward, and we wish him all the best in his future endeavors". That buyout would be mitigated by whatever salary he earns in a new coaching job. Butch Jones is out, and Brady Hoke will finish out the year calling the shots for the Vols.

The Vols lost to LSU in that season's SEC Championship and beat Wisconsin in the Outback Bowl.

The new head coach at Tennessee will be the Vols' fifth in the last 11 years.

The 59-year-old Hoke has head coaching experience at Ball State (six years), San Diego State (two years) and MI (four years), and after his dismissal at MI after the 2014 season, Hoke was out of coaching for a year before spending the 2016 season as Oregon's defensive coordinator.

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When Jones took over in 2013, Tennessee had recorded just one winning season in the previous five years and had lost at least six games in a season for five straight years. TCU has signed only one top 25 class since 2010.

Last season, with talented upperclassmen sprinkled throughout the roster, Tennessee started 5-0 with wins over Florida and Georgia. Fulmer, who was sacked in 2008, has 11 of those wins.

Currie now must begin a coaching search just 7 1/2 months after taking over as Tennessee's athletic director.

Jones was sacked Sunday before completing his fifth season.

Tennessee was not expected to win the SEC East, but they were projected to be competitive in the division with Georgia and Florida. Tennessee's last top 20 finish in the final AP poll was 2007, the year before Fulmer was sacked. However, Hoke was only 20-18 in his last three seasons with the Wolverines, leading to his firing after the 2014 season.

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