Athens North?

Who would have thought the key to the restoration of greatness for Tennessee football would run through Mark Richt’s former Georgia staff?

Tennessee plans to fill its final assistant coach opening with a versatile coach who has experience coaching special teams and defense.

The Vols are finalizing a deal to hire North Texas special teams coordinator Mike Ekeler, a source with knowledge of the situation confirmed to Knox News.

… His first on-field SEC job was at Georgia, where he coached inside linebackers and was co-special teams coordinator in 2014-15 under coach Mark Richt. Former Tennessee coach Jeremy Pruitt was Georgia’s defensive coordinator during those two seasons.

Ekeler couldn’t stand the sight of Pruitt, so I’m sure he’s thrilled for the opportunity.  Meanwhile, that makes thirty percent of Heupel’s assistants who once coached under Richt, for better or worse.  The Vols are back, baby!



Filed under Because Nothing Sucks Like A Big Orange

18 responses to “Athens North?

  1. psyopdawg

    The terrain at Rocky Top is just that! My first feeling when I here that is a humorous one. I do however like it best when all teams we face are at least competent.


  2. pdawg30577

    The most remarkable thing is that that 30 percent of UT’s new staff represents the absolute bottom 30th percentile of all the coaches Richt had over his long tenure. It’s like they ranked them all and started picking from the very bottom and worked their way up. It’s amazing, really.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. psyopdawg

    By the way, did you here Andy Staples yesterday on Finebaum say LSU and A&M were better jobs than Georgia and that Athens was Boring?


  4. Down Island Way

    My bad, thought Terrapin Beer Company was Athens north…


  5. Godawg

    Isn’t Ekeler the guy that drank like 17 Red Bulls a day?

    Liked by 2 people

    • mwodieseldawg

      The players called him coach red bull.


    • hassan

      He’s also the guy that would go run 10 miles to kill time while the catering staff was setting up for lunch. High energy guy, but not in an intense Macho Man Randy Savage kind of way. Had lunch with him at a football clinic one time. Super easy to talk to and engaging.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. barneydawg

    I hope that the Tennessee staff will have the same cohesion,togetherness and “be on the same page-ness” that our 2015 staff had.

    Liked by 3 people

  7. armydawg

    Will the new HC have the stones to press the “you’re fired” button. Or is he of the mindset that he can “rehabilitate” these coaches? It’ll be fun to watch either way. I still can’t believe they just let Phat Phil slink away untouched.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Corch Irvin Meyers, Former Jags Corch (2024)

    Well, one of Richt’s greatest accomplishments was ending Tennessee’s run as a top-tier SEC program, so in a way what they’re doing kinda makes sense. It’s the execution that’s all wrong. They bringing back some of the worst old Georgia coaches (Soft Willy and Ekeler) and some who should’ve retired long ago (Gardner).

    Liked by 4 people

  9. stoopnagle

    Ekeler is the one who has said the most about Pruitt’s time in Athens. It’s not much, but I seem to remember him maybe letting a bit more slip than he should.


  10. Greg

    Remember Ekeler now, he was that crazy guy that came from the Nebraska. I liked the hire……wished he would’ve kicked ole “Sand Mountain” Pruitt’s ass.

    He needed it…

    Liked by 1 person

  11. godawgs1701

    Good for Ekeler. I really liked him, and I really respected the way he went about his business in one of the most turbulent seasons Georgia’s ever had. He definitely didn’t have any love for Jeremy Pruitt and the way he showed his ass around Butts-Mehre and that alone makes him a good one in my book. I hate that he had to land at a place like Tennessee, but I’m hoping it will turn out to be a good move for him. Seems like a good man. He had nothing but great things to say about UGA and Athens in the years since he left.

    Liked by 1 person