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A Tennessee Fan’s Letter to Jeremy Pruitt

Photo: Tennessee Athletics

Dear Jeremy Pruitt,

When Phillip Fulmer introduced you as the next football coach of the University of Tennessee, the majority of fans felt a sense of relief. The fans were thrilled to have a coach who’s known for winning at a high level, and who has recruited elite talent throughout his career.

Having a southern coach who acknowledges the traditions of Tennessee and understands the passion that runs through our program is a breath of fresh air. You stood at the podium and provided every Tennessee fan with honesty. You didn’t fill the room with false narrative about how Tennessee has been your dream job since you were a little boy — instead you stood up and told everyone how honored you were to be recognized as Tennessee’s head coach.

You want everyone who’s touched Tennessee’s program to be on the same page, including fans, staff, and especially former players. Understanding what previous coaches failed to realize helped you gain immediate respect from those who have poured their lives into this university.

The fact that you’re able to recruit for our program while coaching the players you previously committed to shows us exactly what kind of coach we are getting. You are telling every Vol fan that you live and breathe football 24 hours a day for seven days a week, displaying the work ethic that our program desperately needs.

We are tired of watching our Vols run through the “T” and singing “Rocky Top” knowing our team will struggle against opponents that we are accustomed to blowing out. We want our traditions to mean something again, and we want to compete against our rivals who make us look like a national embarrassment. The only tradition Tennessee is known for nowadays is losing.

Over the last five years there have been numerous players who deserved a chance to showcase their talent, but were held back by a man who thought J.J. Watt was better suited at tight end than on the defensive line. We are used to decades of dominance, but recently our football program has been demoralized by mid-grade coaches and poor leadership. We need a coach who “gets it,” a coach who doesn’t blame everyone else for his lack of common sense, and a coach who doesn’t promise our players one thing only to do the complete opposite.

If Phillip Fulmer felt comfortable giving you the keys to our football program, then I think the fans will sit down and trust you as the next head coach at the University of Tennessee.


a Tennessee Fan

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