The Coach Duggs era on Rocky Top is officially over.

After two seasons that provided excitement, heartbreak, and ultimately redemption, Gus Duggerton announced his intentions to return to Toledo.

The coaching carousel was in full motion on Sunday night and Coach Duggs turned down numerous Power-5 head coaching opportunities so he could return to where it all started (Duggerton started his career at Toledo as an offensive coordinator).

This was certainly an odd move after Duggs reached the pinnacle of college football in 2018 with the Vols.

But that’s exactly the reason I think Duggerton chose to return to the MAC.

Tennessee fans didn’t really give him a choice.

I think we all knew that Duggs was done at Tennessee after two years and a national championship. It was time to move on.

But because of the overwhelming social media presence of Vol fans, there was nowhere Coach Duggs could go that would match that same level of enthusiasm.

Say what you will about Tennessee football, but Vol fans get things done on Twitter and other social media platforms (they’re partly responsible for Greg Schiano NOT being UT’s head coach).

For that reason, Duggs had no choice but to go somewhere and basically reset expectations. No one is expecting the same type of social media engagement at Toledo.

Essentially, the only way Barstool Big Cat could garner the same audience away from Tennessee is to take Toledo to a national championship. That’s the only way I think he could get the same audience for a championship game that he did at UT.

And then he can climb the coaching ladder again. The audience won’t be the same if he lands at Wisconsin, but it won’t be as big of a letdown going from Toledo to Wisconsin (or another Power-5 program) as it would’ve been if he went directly from Tennessee.

This is just another example of Vol nation continues to be one of the powerful fan bases on social media.

Featured image via Twitter.
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