Tennessee Athletic Director Dave Hart has no doubt that Derek Dooley improved the Volunteers’ football program after inheriting a tough situation three years ago.
Derek Dooley did indeed improve this football program. There is no question about that. He inherited a very, very difficult environment, one that I’m now very familiar with having been here for these 13 months. And quite honestly, he was given a pretty short stick to take into that battle. I think given those facts that he did a good job in a lot of areas in putting a solid foundation under our football program.
He might have made positive changes from the inside in his three years as head coach, but it sure didn’t show up in the records and standings; that is why Derek Dooley was fired Sunday as head coach of the University of Tennessee football program. He had the longest run of consecutive losing seasons in over a century.
Dooley put together a 15-21 record that consists of a 4-19 SEC record and lost 14 of his last 15 league games. He was also 0-15 against Top 25 teams. The Vols will fail to reach a bowl game in back-to-back seasons for the first time since 1978, when they were on the outside looking in for 4 consecutive years.
Dooley’s successor will become the fourth Tennessee coach in a six-year stretch. Phillip Fulmer was fired in the midst of a 5-7 season in 2008 and ended his 17-year tenure with a 152-52 record. Punk ass Lane Kiffin (excuse me, but I’m a die-hard Vols fan) stayed for just one year before Southern California hired (I rather say pimped) him away. Now Dooley is leaving after only three seasons.
Dooley’s statement released by the university.
I am sorry we could not generate enough wins to create hope for a brighter future. Although progress was not reflected in our record, I am proud of the strides we made to strengthen the foundation for future success in all areas of the program. During the last 34 months, I’ve given my all for Tennessee, and our family appreciates all this University and the Knoxville community has given us.
Written by AG2