Butch Jones didn’t shy away from questions about being hired as the new football coach at Tennessee only after the Volunteers had been rejected by Oklahoma State’s Mike Gundy and Louisville’s Charlie Strong. After speaking about how the Tennessee job was his dream job, here’s what Jones had to say in response to a question about whether his pride was bruised due to the fact that he wasn’t Tennessee’s first choice to replace outgoing coach Derek Dooley courtesy of CoachingSearch.com:
“Absolutely not. I think I was my wife’s third choice and it’s worked out for 20 years.”
Jones may not be the sexy hire that Volunteer nation wanted, but you have to give Tennessee athletic director Dave Hart credit for sticking to his guns. He said that he wanted to hire someone with head coaching experience, and he resisted the urge to go after a coordinator like Alabama’s Kirby Smart even after Charlie Strong and Mike Gundy said no to the Vols. Also, unlike outgoing coach Derek Dooley, Butch Jones has had a winning record at both of his previous stops before coming to Knoxville. For the sake of the SEC East, let’s all hope that Jones is the man to return Tennessee to prominence.