On Tuesday the Tennessee Football Twitter page posted a graphic of several NFL stars with the caption, “Be coached by the best, then become the best.” Although the intention was to showcase the coaching resume of our current staff, it may have missed the mark.
Be coached by the best, then become the best. #PoweredByTheT #VFL pic.twitter.com/HTDojxP08r
— Tennessee Football (@Vol_Football) April 24, 2018
The graphic included photos of Ha Ha Clinton Dix, Green Bay Packer, who played at Alabama and Leonard Floyd, Chicago Bear and former Georgia Bulldog. A full list at the bottom of the graphic reads players from Alabama, Georgia, LSU, and Clemson, among many other programs in the nation. Tennessee is fortunate to have coaches with years of experience, talent, and recognition, but showcasing rival schools (that Tennessee often loses recruits to) may not be the best marketing tool.
Tennessee has always been one of the most dominant programs in college football. And while recent years have undoubtedly been difficult to watch (lookin’ at you, 2015 versus Oklahoma and 2015 versus Florida and 2015 versus Arkansas and 2016 versus South Ca— you get the point), good things have come out of the program. Eric Berry, Alvin Kamara, Derek Barnett, Ju’wuan James — all of these players emerged during one of the worst eras of Tennessee football. Tennessee has talent; showcase it.
How would you feel if our former coaches went to other schools and started boastfully claiming Eric Berry as their own? It’d make you kind of mad, right?
Boasting the achievements of the current coaching staff is understandable. After the coaching search fiasco, presenting a well-respected, accomplished staff was necessary to regain the trust of fans. It’s important to show that the coaches have had success in both recruiting and development.
Now, it is time to focus on Tennessee; the traditions that set our institution apart from every other school in the nation, the success our program has had, and the relentless spirit the fan base has possessed through the highest of highs, and the lowest of lows.
Tyrann Mathieu is a great player. Reuben Foster, Nick Fairley, and A’Shawn Robinson are all very talented. But they are not Tennessee. If you must show off these players, show them off on recruiting visits.
Let’s focus on Tennessee when we are on Tennessee accounts talking to Tennessee fans.