“You can see why Coach Fulmer was a good recruiter when he was coaching,” Pruitt said at Southside Social in Chattanooga on Thursday night. “He’s easy to get to know. Me and him have a lot of the same things in common, and we see a lot of things the same way,”
One of the more curious early narratives within the Tennessee fan base related to how the 67-year-old Fulmer and Pruitt would get along, in terms of their football relationship.
Some were worried Fulmer might interfere, perhaps not realizing that he is Pruitt’s biggest advocate and would not have hired him if he didn’t have supreme confidence in his coaching abilities.
Pruitt has said he feels fortunate to have Fulmer as an athletic director, going so far as to say other coaches are “jealous” of his situation.
“I’ve only known him for a short time, but it seems I’ve known him for a very long time,” Pruitt said. “So I’m excited to continue to work with him and what he can help bring to our program.”
Fulmer was not known to be a harsh critic of his players during his College Football Hall of Fame coaching career, but he supports the hard-core approach Pruitt has used this spring.
“I’m gonna tell you this, he has challenged everybody in every way, and I love it,” Fulmer said.
That is so cute. Kinda reminds me of this budding romance.
Jeremy Pruitt has wanted to work at Georgia for a long time.
The former Florida State defensive coordinator first met Georgia head coach Mark Richt in 2003 as a high school coach in Fort Payne, Ala., when he brought two recruits to the university. Pruitt, who coached under his father Dale Pruitt at Fort Payne, was so impressed with the meeting 11 years ago that he promised himself something when exiting the room.
“When I walked out of that room 30 minutes later I was wowed,” Pruitt said. “My father looked at me and said ‘That’s what college football is all about.’ I said right then and there that if I ever had an opportunity to work for him that I would be a part of his staff.”
… After transferring from Middle Tennessee State to Alabama, Pruitt roomed with Georgia offensive line coach Will Friend. Pruitt said that the two have continued talking weekly for the past 15-20 years, and Friend called him this week with news about an opening at the defensive coordinator position.
“When the job came open in the small talk we had weekly, he asked me if I would be interested and this is the University of Georgia, and who wouldn’t be interested in this job,” Pruitt said.
“It’s one of the premier jobs in college football, and I had the opportunity to work with coach Richt and I just couldn’t turn down.”
Yeah, that ended well. This time will be different. Probably…