Rarely do college coaching staffs stay exactly the same from year to year.
(Despite Nick Saban’s protests.)
Head coaches are always looking to upgrade their staffs, while assistants are always looking to upgrade their jobs.
Tennessee Vols head coach Jeremy Pruitt will likely do his best to keep his staff together in 2020. The team clearly performed well will the group of assistants that Pruitt assembled, so I’m sure he’d love some continuity heading into 2020.
But there’s one coach who could catch the eye of another SEC program and receive a job promotion.
Vols inside linebackers/special teams coach Kevin Sherrer would make a lot of sense as Sam Pittman’s defensive coordinator at Arkansas.
Sherrer was Pruitt’s defensive coordinator in 2018 at Tennessee. But he was “demoted” after the season in favor of Derrick Ansley, who now serves as Tennessee’s defensive backs coach/defensive coordinator.
There’s no doubt that Sherrer wants to continue to climb the coaching ladder. Receiving a job offer as a defensive coordinator in the SEC would likely be tough for the Alabama native to turn down.
Of course, he has to receive an offer first.
247Sports has reported that former Missouri head coach Barry Odom is a candidate to be Pittman’s inaugural defensive coordinator at Arkansas. Odom would certainly be a good fit — he was the Tigers’ defensive coordinator from 2012-2015 and he served as Mizzou’s head coach from 2016-2019.
But if Pittman is looking for familiarity and someone he’s comfortable working with, Sherrer could be the guy.
Pittman and Sherrer coached together at Georgia in 2016 and 2017. A reunion in Fayetteville would be beneficial for both. Sherrer has plenty of SEC experience and he knows what it’s like to work with a first time head coach.
Joining Arkansas’ staff as a defensive coordinator would also put Sherrer back on an upward trajectory in the coaching business.
And if Sherrer leaves, it wouldn’t be a surprise if former Alabama assistant Tosh Lupoi becomes a strong candidate to join Tennessee’s staff.
It’s all speculation at this point, but I wouldn’t be shocked to see Sherrer become a serious option to join Pittman’s staff at Arkansas.
Featured image via Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports/247Sports