One more thing to ponder about Tennessee’s soon-to-be historic 2018 season

If you remember how Jeremy Pruitt weeded out (see what I did there?) a fair number of defensive players from Georgia’s roster upon his arrival, this shouldn’t come as any real surprise.

Who will leave?

Pruitt means business, and he knows that coddling players is not the way to get the Vols competing for championships. His take-it-or-leave attitude may not jibe with all the players he is inheriting from former coach Butch Jones.

Tennessee’s roster has stayed mostly intact through the transition so far, but after 15 spring practices it’s likely that at least a few players will decide to depart. This creates a delicate balancing act for the new coaching staff, because the Vols can ill afford to lose much depth. It would be especially taxing to the 2018 roster if any scholarship offensive linemen decide to leave.

I can’t imagine that in his first shot as a head coach, Pruitt is of a mind to compromise his management principles.  I also can’t imagine there aren’t at least a few of Booch’s recruits who won’t see eye-to-eye with the new regime.

Between that and the shaky health in certain key areas like the offensive line, I can’t help but wonder what the over/under on the number of scholarship athletes on UT’s roster will be by the time the season opener rolls around.


Filed under Because Nothing Sucks Like A Big Orange

22 responses to “One more thing to ponder about Tennessee’s soon-to-be historic 2018 season

  1. Hogbody Spradlin

    They’ll be combing the campus for fat guys.


  2. ugafidelis

    My question is, how have they has 15 spring practices already if ours just starts today?


  3. Bill Glennon

    My philosophy (metaphorically):


  4. reality check here

    Tennessee won’t be that good this year but I am not aware of any job Pruitt has had he didn’t do well, including UGA. Bear Bryant ran off a lot of the Texas A&M players his first year there, but it had to be done to turn them around. I think Pruitt’s formula is the right one. He will demand everything his players have and he has demonstrated a propensity to stand up to authority when necessary.

    In the next few years I expect UT to be back.


    • Macallanlover

      The “reality check here” is if Pruitt doesn’t compromise his principles, or improve his organizational skills, he will flop on Rocky Top. Maybe he surprises and becomes the home run hire TN desperately needs, but chances are good this will not end well. Starting from a low base, the talent didn’t improve much in the short recruiting season. If they have another disappointing season, it will again be hard to attract top players for 2019. The main selling point is playing time, and if players are run off the bad rep Knoxville has will only grow.

      There is a lot working against them at this point: long period of below average performance, disarray among those managing the program, well publicized fail during the hiring search, lack of a state wide recruiting base, new coach lacking in experience with a new staff, etc. My guess is this is a long shot to succeed.

      Liked by 1 person

    • ChiliDawg

      I am not aware of any job Pruitt has had in which he was the head man in charge of completely rebuilding a program with nearly bare cupboards to work with.

      Nobody questions that Pruitt can coach defense. That tells us nothing about his ability to be a head coach.


    • W Cobb Dawg

      I would’ve preferred utk hire just about anybody but CJP. Unfortunately, I think he’s gonna do well. The guy is a competitor and has maintained a very high level of success. My best hope is that recruiting top players to utk is just too huge an undertaking. But if he lands good players, there’s no doubt he can coach them to plenty of wins.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. South FL Dawg

    Maybe Fulmer can come out of retirement for OL too.


  6. heyberto

    It makes sense to do it now, not later. He gets a pass this year, so if he runs off some players, in terms of ‘political capital’ he can afford it a lot more this year than in future years.


  7. Cousin Eddie

    I hope he doesn’t have 20 scholarship players to start the season. Not that I wish any of the kids ill but maybe they abandon ship.


  8. tbia

    The one thing that REALLY makes this a no-win situation for UT….

    if Pruitt IS successful, he’ll jump at taking the Bama job in a few years when Nicky hangs it up.


  9. St. Johns Dawg

    Seems like a tough year is in store for UT, but if I’m honest this reminds me of 1996 UGA. The year we started out with a home loss to Southern Miss and a road loss to SC. Entire year was tough, especially with injuries and the like. 1997 UGA was a different story. Pruitt may struggle this year, but short of a legal reason he won’t be fired.


  10. Hill Billy Dawg

    6-6, 7-5, then a return to a perennial 8-4 and 9-3 alternating seasons. He won’t be beating Bama, UGA or Florida anytime soon. Just my .02


  11. Mike Cooley

    I will never understand the folks who think Pruitt is capable of turning this crap storm into a success. What in his past makes you think he has that in him? Being a good DC at Florida State, UGA, and Ala-freaking-bama is not what he is being asked to do now.


  12. Cojones

    Pruitt is shaking his head while reading this in the rented room he got on the downlow as he’s preparing for guests with 5 iced buckets of beer and a large blunt he just finished rolling. Seems like he whispered something about “Bonding” just before leaving the athletic complex this evening.