While it looked like Tennessee’s offseason football staff shakeup had largely wound down following the departure of Mike DeBord to Indiana, the promotion of Larry Scott to offensive coordinator, and the hiring of Brady Hoke, there will be at least one more change: according to reports, passing game coordinator and wide receivers coach Zach Azzanni has left the Vols program to assume the receivers coach position with the Chicago Bears. Azzanni is replacing former Tulane head coach Curtis Johnson in Chicago, who is returning to the New Orleans Saints after a year with the Bears.
Azzanni joined Butch Jones and Tennessee in 2013, initially serving as recruiting coordinator before being promoted to passing game coordinator in 2015. In his time with the Vols he’s been responsible for recruiting several big names, including Josh Malone, Marquez North, Marquez Callaway, Von Pearson, and Josh Smith.
It’s tough to get a bead on what this move means, exactly- or if it “means” anything at all. On the one hand, Azzanni was widely considered a candidate for the offensive coordinator position recently filled by Larry Scott, so this may just be a guy feeling he’s reached his ceiling at Tennessee. On the other hand, his departure marks the sixth offseason staff change for Butch Jones, the kind of turnover that’s not historically been a great sign for coaches on the hot seat. What yall think?