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Tracking possible assistant coach hires for Jeremy Pruitt at Tennessee

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Keep it here for the latest.

NCAA Football: Chick-fil-A Kickoff-Alabama vs Florida State Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

1/12: 8:00 AM

According to John Brice, the search for a receivers coach has been narrowed down to three names. Lawrence Dawson, David Johnson and Des Kitchings were all named by Brice.


1/10: 1:00 PM

Jeremy Pruitt announces his initial hires at Tennessee.

OC/QBs: Tyson Helton

RBs: Robert Gillespie

TEs: Brian Niedemyer

OL: Will Friend

DC: Kevin Sherrer

Co-DC/OLBs: Chris Rumph

DL: Tracy Rocker

CBs: Terry Fair

Saf/ST: Charles Kelly

Strength: Craig Fitzgerald

Player Personnel: Drew Hughes

Football Ops: Todd Watson


1/5: 8:00 PM

Per Football Scoop, Tennessee has hired Drew Hughes as their director of player personnel. Hughes left Florida to take the job. He served as a recruiting specialist at Alabama before heading to Florida, working with Jeremy Pruitt.


1/5: 7:00 PM

Aaron Wilson reports that Tennessee will hire Craig Fitzgerald as the strength coach.


12/28: 11:00 AM

Per VolQuest, Charles Kelly could join Tennessee’s staff as a special teams’ coach.

UPDATE: Kelly will run the special team and coach the safeties.


12/18: 9:00 AM

It appears that LSU GM Austin Thomas won’t be joining the Tennessee staff after all. Word is that talks got hung up in title and responsibility.


12/13: 11 AM

Tennessee has hired Austin Thomas away from LSU. His role isn’t clear yet, but expect him to take on something similar to his GM role at LSU.


12/12: 1:00 PM

It looks like Tennessee talked to Chris Weinke, but no deal has been struck. We’re in a holding pattern here. Weinke was an offensive analyst for Alabama last year.


12/12: 12:00 PM

After just one season in Knoxville, strength coach Rock Gullickson won’t be retained by Jeremy Pruitt. Add strength coach to the list of needs.


12/11: 7:00 AM

To update, here’s where we stand. To be clear, these haven’t been officially announced at this point. Some of the position assignments are still a little fuzzy.

OC: Tyson Helton

RB: Robert Gillespie

OL: Will Friend

Kevin Sherrer: DC, ILB, Co-DC?

DB: Terry Fair

Tracy Rocker: DL?

Chris Rumph: DL? OLB? Co-DC?

Chris Weinke: QB? Offensive analyst?

Brian Niedermeyer: Director of Player Personnel?


12/9: 5:30 PM

LSU GM Austin Thomas has been connected to Tennessee since the start of the coaching search. That connection now appears to be gaining some traction, according to a report from Football Scoop. His GM position at LSU is unique — Thomas is currently one of two college GMs in the country. Could he fill a similar role at Tennessee?


12/9: 1 PM

An update from Football Scoop says that Todd Watson will join the staff, likely as director of football operations.

Troy director of operations / high school relations Todd Watson will join Jeremy Pruitt’s staff at Tennessee sources tell FootballScoop. Watson and Pruitt coached together at Hoover High (Watson as defensive coordinator and Pruitt as special teams coordinator).


12/8: 7:30 PM

Heads up: Former Heisman winner Chris Weinke is in Knoxville, according to Brent Hubbs of VolQuest.com. Weinke is currently on Alabama’s staff as an offensive assistant.


12/8: 11:30 AM

Tracy Rocker and Chris Rumph are set to take positions on staff. They are already in Knoxville, per Volquest. Rumph served as the defensive line coach for Florida last year while Rocker held the same position at Georgia. Both have extensive SEC ties.


12/7: 6:00 PM

Bruce Feldman says Kevin Sherrer is expected to be Tennessee’s new DC.


12/7: 2:45 PM

VolQuest reports that Tyson Helton will be Tennessee’s offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach. They also confirm that Will Friend will join the staff, along with Terry Fair. They also report that Pruitt wants to keep Robert Gillispie.


12/7: 2:10 PM

Football Scoop reports that Terry Fair is in play.

Jeremy Pruitt has had discussions about bringing Colorado State cornerbacks coach Terry Fair back to campus, although we don’t believe anything is done at this time.


12/7: 2:00 PM

According to Football Scoop, Will Friend is indeed heading to Tennessee. It remains to be seen in what capacity, but Friend will be a part of Pruitt’s staff, per this report.


12/7: 9:00 AM

Will Friend is expected to leave his post as the Colorado State OC to be Tennessee’s new offensive line coach, per Feldman.


12/7: 9:00 AM

Feldman drops a couple of names on us. He mentions Sherrer, which backs up what Football Scoop reported first.

Feldman mentions USC passing game coordinator Tyson Helton, the younger brother of Clay, as a potential offensive coordinator. As reported last night, don’t expect Tee Martin to be in play for the OC gig.


12/7: 8:00 AM

Football Scoop gives us one name to watch for the defensive coordinator spot, along with a name to watch for the defensive line coach.

On the defensive side of the ball, Pruitt and Georgia outside linebackers coach Kevin Sherrer are very close and we understand he is strongly in consideration for a senior position on the defensive staff. We also have been hearing Tracy Rocker’s name for the defensive line position.

Football Scoop mentions two early names to watch for the offensive coordinator position. They also say that Enos could be in play for Michigan and to keep an eye on Colorado State OC Will Friend.

Last night we shared that two of his top choices for offensive coordinator were likely to be Billy Napier or Dan Enos. With Napier recently re-upping with Arizona State, one would think he’s out of the running. Thus, it would appear Dan Enos has a great shot at the position


12/6: 10:00 PM

Jeremy Pruitt has reportedly agreed to become Tennessee’s next head coach. This has since been finalized with Pruitt agreeing to a six year deal.