Tennessee had a lot of rumors for potential coaches during the offseason, from Jon Gruden to Mike Leach to Greg Schiano. Even names like former Vols tight end Jason Witten were in headlines during a crazy coaching search.
But the coach that Tennessee decided on, former Alabama defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt, may seem like a more boring option than some of the alternatives. But according to SEC Network anchor Peter Burns, that’s a good thing.
“There’s not a lot of people that are excited about Jeremy Pruitt at Tennessee, I’m not going to lie,” Burns said Thursday on “SEC This Morning” on SiriusXM Radio. “The fact that Tennessee football is going to be boring is such a good thing. I want the Tennessee Volunteers to be the minivan of college football. I want them to be the one-piece bathing suit of college football for the next two years. I want this team to be so far under the radar for 24 months, I don’t need to hear a word from Jeremy Pruitt, I don’t need to hear anything from the players, I want zero headlines. I want this team to be the non-sexiest SEC team that I’ve seen in decades.”
Obviously, not having crazy headlines in the media serves well for college football teams, as it eliminates potential distractions and controversies. But that’s not the only reason that Burns believes it will benefit the Vols.
“What Tennessee needs to do is they need to build the foundation,” Burns said. “And how you build that foundation is not by chasing headlines. You build that foundation by grabbing 3- and 4-star guys that fit your program better than a 5-star guy will fit the headlines. And I think that’s what Jeremy Pruitt is going to bring to Tennessee. I think he’s going to bring no slogans, I don’t think he’s going to bring trash cans to the sideline, no gimmicks. I think that he is just going to win football.”
It may not happen right away for Tennessee. The Vols haven’t won 10 games since 2007, and last year, they went 4-8, which was the most losses they have ever suffered in a season.
So while Tennessee fans may have the right to be impatient, Burns said they shouldn’t be quite yet with Pruitt taking over at the helm.
“My message to Tennessee fans right now is that you need to show patience,” Burns said. “You’re a proud fan base, one of the most historic programs we’ve ever seen. You’re a blue blood of college football, and you’re going to get back to that point. And you’re going to probably get back to that point, closer to it, with Jeremy Pruitt running your program because I don’t believe he is a gimmick guy.”
For the full segment from Burns on Thursday’s show, listen below:
Earlier he gave his thoughts on the state of the program on #SECThisMorning
It's a must-listen. pic.twitter.com/SGg3i3O2zw
— Frank Fowler (@FrankFowlerSEC) April 12, 2018