Tennessee hires Jeremy Pruit as new head coach

Jeremy Pruitt Alabama

"Six days ago, I mentioned several attributes that I sought to find in the next leader of our football program, and Coach Pruitt meets all criteria" Tennessee athletics director Phillip Fulmer said in a statement.

Tennessee will hire Alabama defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt as its head coach, according to Sports Radio WNML in Knoxville. His first year as a defensive coordinator was in 2013 at Florida State. If Alabama wins, it will move on to the College Football Playoff National Championship Game on January 8.

This year, Pruitt has coached Alabama's defense to the No. 2 overall defense in the country after guiding the Crimson Tide to the No. 1 defense last season. He initially coached in Tuscaloosa from 2007 to 2012, the final three seasons as defensive backs coach.

Another name being discussed is Georgia outside linebackers coach Kevin Sherrer who coached alongside Pruitt at Georgia.

Considering how bad this search has gone for the Vols, I think the hire of Pruitt is a home run.

Former Georgia defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt is back in the SEC East.

Fulmer then reportedly moved on to hiring Pruitt. During that time, the Crimson Tide appeared in the College Football Playoff both years, losing to Clemson in the national championship game in 2016. Before the 2015 playoffs, Smart accepted the head coaching position at Georgia, but he also attempted to stay on the Alabama staff through the playoffs. That means he will basically be working two jobs, game planning for the Tigers while also recruiting and putting together a coaching staff at Tennessee. However, the search for a new coach had been so unsuccessful that it was even jokingly rumored North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un even turned down the job. "That's a high bar that was set, but I think player development, which will be much better, is more important and Pruitt should have a leg up there".

Pruitt has served as defensive coordinator at Alabama since 2016.

Tennessee was close to hiring Ohio State defensive coordinator Greg Schiano on November 26 before that deal fell through amid a public backlash.

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