Report: Those close with Tennessee program say 'culture is a disaster'
Among all SEC teams, no season may have been more disappointing than Tennessee’s
2016 was supposed to be the culmination of everything the program had worked towards since Butch Jones took the helm in 2012. The Vols were picked to win the SEC East, and they were given an outside shot at making the College Football Playoff.
A 5-0 start, albeit with several close calls, kept all of the program’s stated goals intact. A 3-4 run down the stretch, however, crushed all of those hopes and have left a lingering cloud of confusion and disappointment.
In an excellent bit of reporting by Travis Haney, 247Sports spoke with several people close to the situation and the feeling is not a positive one.
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“Butch is not very comfortable in his own skin,” One source told Haney. “Until he has that, he’ll just never be a great coach. He’s not comfortable in his own skin in recruiting, play-calling, organization … He’s great in a small setting, but he’s just not a comfortable guy.”
The belief is that Jones’ stated promise of bringing a championship back to the storied program led to some of the top recruits having too much leeway. There was a sense of entitlement with the players instead of discipline.
Perhaps the most blunt and telling nugget that Haney uncovered came from someone who works in the football building.
“The culture is a disaster,” they relayed to Haney.
It remains to be seen how Tennessee moves forward from this season, but the clock appears to be ticking.