Tennessee Vols head coach Jeremy Pruitt isn’t a sure-fire candidate to be fired this offseason, but he’s at least giving folks a reason to talk about his seat being warm.
Pruitt is in his third season as the Vols’ head coach and the program appears to be stuck in neutral. There’s been no noticeable improvement from Pruitt’s team in 2020, which is concerning considering the all-star assistant coaching staff he has with him in Knoxville.
But while there will certainly be some chatter about Pruitt this offseason and whether or not he should be the head coach at Tennessee, there’s one way he can quiet the noise.
And it’s incredibly simple.
Start Harrison Bailey the rest of the season.
Tennessee has four games left this season. The Vols are currently 2-4. At this point, a 4-6 record at the end of the season would be a miracle.
In other words, it’s time to start focusing on 2021 and forget about 2020.
And the only way Pruitt is going to for sure be the head coach at Tennessee in 2021 is if he gives fans/administration a reason to believe that the program is moving in the right direction.
Continuing to start Jarrett Guarantano is pointless. JG won’t be the starting quarterback at Tennessee in 2021. And he’s not going to lead the Vols to a winning record in 2020.
So why continue to trot him out there?
Bailey is the future of the program. The reps he could be getting the rest of the season as UT’s starter would be invaluable. Tennessee would 100 percent be a better team in 2021 if Bailey gets a considerable amount of playing time to close the 2020 season.
Pruitt has a lot of work to do to prove he’s the guy who can turn Tennessee around — especially after the way the program has performed this season.
He could start earning some goodwill with fans by benching JG and rolling with Bailey.
It’s the only way that Pruitt can guarantee he has a job as Tennessee’s head coach next season.
Featured image via Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports