Butch Jones to media: Want to make sure that we're respecting players
Butch Jones is known as a strict disciplinarian, but he’s also known as a player’s coach and someone parents would want their children playing for.
During media days, the SEC Network’s Booger McFarland and Marcus Spears couldn’t say enough great things about Jones, explaining why they would want to play for Jones at Tennessee.
On Tuesday, Jones met with the media and once again proved the theory right: he protects his players, even scolding the media a bit about freshman wide receiver Preston Williams, who had to retake the ACT recently.
Jones was asked about Williams’ status — he’s currently ineligible because the NCAA flagged his ACT score — and he took the opportunity to teach the media a lesson, in a nice way, of course.
“We have to start respecting more our players,” Jones said. “And we love our players, but everybody wants to write about Preston Williams and the ACT test.
“I love Preston Williams,” Jones continued. “I’m a father to him. That’s our role, and I think, how would everyone like if the media followed their own son or daughter around to ACT testing and talked about their own son or daughter going to the ACT test?
“These aren’t professional football players,” Jones said. “These are young adults, and it’s my job to protect them. It’s all on my shoulders, but we need to start respecting our players a little bit more in terms of these are still kids. I love them, and I want to make sure that we’re respecting them.”
Williams was one of Tennessee’s most hyped signees in the 2015 recruiting class. The four-star prospect was one player who could make an immediate impact on offense, but he’s currently ineligible with the flagged test.
Tennessee and Williams are awaiting the test results.