Tennessee (Reportedly) Finally Has a New Coach: Alabama Defensive Coordinator Jeremy Pruitt


Tennessee (Reportedly) Finally Has a New Coach: Alabama Defensive Coordinator Jeremy Pruitt

Pruitt would put the kibosh on Tennessee's embarrassing coaching search in wake of Butch Jones' firing.

Tennessee's circuitous head-coaching search, which has taken on just about every twist imaginable, is nearing an end, as the Vols are trying to finalize a deal with Alabama defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt after offering him the job earlier Wednesday, sources told ESPN. Tennessee struck out landing Dan Mullen, former Mississippi State and now Florida head coach, and once that deal fell through, Currie reportedly offered the Tennessee coaching job to Ohio State defensive coordinator Greg Schiano last Sunday. As an assistant coach, he has been a part of four national championship teams. Good luck to everyone involved.

But an outcry by the school's fans led to that offer being rescinded and set the stage for athletic director John Currie's dismissal.

After the Schiano deal fell apart, Tennessee's coaching search ranged from Oklahoma State's Mike Gundy, Duke's David Cutcliffe, Purdue's Jeff Brohm, NC State's Dave Doeren and Washington State's Mike Leach until athletic director John Currie was sacked last week. He was initially there from 2007 to 2012, the last three seasons as defensive backs coach. Pruitt may need a little longer to turn the Volunteers into a national title contender.

Particularly at point in the ongoing conversations between the two parties are questions regarding Pruitt's obligations this month to College Football Playoff and Alabama's participation versus Tennessee's need for a head coach to hit the ground running immediately and without distraction upon being named. By 2015, Georgia was eighth in total defense (298.0 yards per game), ninth in scoring defense (16.9 points per game) and eighth in defensive efficiency, according to ESPN.com.