Pruitt 'excited' to put all his energy into Vols program

Ruben Hill
January 13, 2018

Despite the injuries, Alabama had the top-ranked scoring defense in the country, held Clemson to six points in the College Football Playoff semifinal and shut down Georgia in the second half of the championship game.

Safety Dominick Sanders wasn't offered a scholarship to Georgia until soon after Pruitt was hired in January 2014. "I think he's going to have the same success that Kirby had". "Without that, I'd probably be at UCF".

Now that he no longer has to divide his time between two jobs, Tennessee coach Jeremy Pruitt can concentrate exclusively on transforming the Volunteers into Southeastern Conference championship contenders once again. Marvin Gentry-USA TODAY Sports Georgia Bulldogs defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt celebrates with defensive tackle James DeLoach (89) after their game against the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets at Bobby Dodd Stadium.

University of Tennessee head football coach Jeremy Pruitt addressed the media for the first time Wednesday since he was introduced as the Vols head coach in December. "You nearly feel like as I'm sitting here working on this game, should I be doing something to the place I'm about to go?" "They always are at the first meeting".

"Everybody was all smiles", Pruitt said.

The problem was exacerbated Monday night.

A dead period in college football recruiting ends today, which will allow Tennessee's staff to spend more time recruiting ahead of the traditional signing period that begins February 7.

"Most of the time", he said, "my mind was thinking in Knoxville". "Trying to do what was best for Georgia".

Pruitt replaced Butch Jones at Tennessee on December 7 after an embarrassing and prolonged coaching search for the Volunteers, but he remained at Alabama to help through the national championship. "That never happened. Never would have happened".

Sleep was optional. Really, rest remains on Jeremy Pruitt's back-burner.

"We'll have to look at what we want to do to try to get the best coaches in there to help our players, develop our players with this next group, but we have some good coaches on our staff".

Outside linebacker Davin Bellamy was one the players vocal in his support then for Pruitt.

"This place is like a coach factory, to be honest with you", Evans said. He's on the other sideline. "We've got to get (big-time) guys".

He recently helped the Alabama Crimson Tide win the national title as defensive coordinator.

Pruitt said there are certain traits that he hopes for in his staff members.

"We'll either be happy in Knoxville, or Kirby will be happy in Athens", Pruitt said. "I gave him a hard time. I can tell you that".

Some players fall through the cracks of recruiting. Two other of his former Colquitt County defensive teammates, Ja'Quain Barkley and Shawn Shamburger, now play for Tennessee.

Davis was a backup that first season, making 40 tackles, and has started 44 games over the last three seasons with five career interceptions. That's why we do it as coaches.

"We have a great coaching staff right now, obviously, we're in the national championship", Bellamy said. "We're a different team". "That's kind of what our focus is on right now".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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