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Trooper Taylor Turns Tail on Tradition

Update [2008-3-11 7:32:52 by Joel]: If you read this post, please be sure to read the follow up as well. I for one misinterpreted Taylor's remarks.

-- Joel

Credit goes to Loser with Socks via EDSBS for finding this story

Trooper Taylor's departure was met with several emotions from the Orange faithful:

  • Gate 21: Concern
  • TSIB: Humor (Read some of the comments.)
  • GVX commenters: Dante's Inferno, which includes a whistlestop tour through the Third, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, Seventh (Middle Ring), Eighth (Bolgias 8, 9, and 10), and Ninth (Zones 2 and 4) Circles as we ride along the train of kneejerk reactions. (Just remember before you go there: what is seen can never be unseen.)

Now, as you've probably already heard, Taylor has a juicy quote for the Tennessee faithful to chew:

"It's fun getting back to the spread offense and hearing the formations being called the same way and hearing some of the plays being called the same way," Taylor said. "It's like I'm speaking the same language again where before I went to Pluto and I had to learn 3 yards and a cloud of dust again."

The implications are quite clear: Trooper is much happier with the more wide-open and high-techish offensive style they're trying to run at The Other OSU. Knoxville = Pluto?!? Who knows.

Here are some thoughts to consider:

  • Remember the offense we ran last year? Was Taylor correct in his assessment of UT being too conservative?
  • Remember Taylor's personality. That wild, excitable guy we loved so well? Now remember Fulmer's and Cutcliffe's personality. Don't they make movies about that kind of personality dichotomy in a hierarchy?
  • Remember the mysterious lack of effort to keep Taylor around? Was this perhaps a rift long in developing between Taylor and UT?

For Taylor to be that bold about his feelings here at UT speaks volumes. He's not preserving any bridges with statements like these. They're not particularly useful in his current location, where he already has the full support of the school and the fanbase. It sounds like there's some honest disgruntlement and that it's been building for a long time. Who's to blame? Is anybody to blame? Was this simply a case of a personality mismatch - getting a great hire that just doesn't fit? Remember: the spread offense is not for every program - there's too many pro-style players and not enough spread-style players to convert the whole NCAA over. Some teams will go with the new-fangled stuff and some will stick with the, um, well, traditional.

Why? I'll tell you why. ... I don't know.

Was it possible for these two to make it all work out? Could we have kept Taylor after Cutcliffe left? I honestly don't know. Now, I do think there's no way we could have kept both Cut and Taylor...

The offense. It is yours. We must maintain tradition!

She loves him. But this isn't tradition!

Think it over and leave your thoughts below.