The brick house that Butch Jones built on Rocky Top has finally come crumbling down.
Tennessee has dismissed the fifth-year coach from his position Sunday following the program’s 50-17 loss at Missouri Saturday night. The Vols’ latest loss comes two weeks after the program suffered its first loss to Kentucky under Jones, three weeks after a 45-7 loss to Alabama and four weeks after a 15-9 loss to South Carolina.
News of Jones’ firing was broken by FOX Sports sideline reporter and Sports Illustrated’s Bruce Feldman. The news has since been confirmed by the school.
BREAKING Butch Jones is out as #Vols head coach, source tells me. He just informed his staff.
— Bruce Feldman (@BruceFeldmanCFB) November 12, 2017
Tennessee AD John Currie released this statement as the school confirmed the news.
“This morning I met with Coach Butch Jones to discuss the future of the football program, and I informed him of my decision that he step down as the University of Tennessee’s head football coach.”
Of course, the game that most will look back on that ultimately cost Jones his job was the 41-0 home blowout against Georgia on Sept. 30 — that final was the worst loss in the history of Neyland Stadium and set the tone for the rest of the dismal season that followed.
Jones did not get a chance to finish out his fifth year at Tennessee, but in his four-plus seasons in Knoxville, the coach accumulated a 34-27 overall record with the Volunteers. Even more disheartening was his conference mark, which finishes at 14-24. Jones failed to beat a Top 10 opponent and went only 4-19 against Top 25 opponents.
Against the teams most Tennessee coaches are judged against — Alabama, Florida and Georgia, Jones finishes with a combined 3-12 mark. Perhaps most damning, Tennessee managed to lose twice to Vanderbilt and never beat a team from the SEC West during his tenure.
Another disgraceful mark currently set by the program under Jones, Tennessee cannot claim a win over any SEC program at the moment — all 13 have defeated the Vols since last meeting them on the gridiron. In those 13 games, Tennessee has been outscored 488 to 235.
(Saturday Down South will have more to come shortly on this developing story)