Talent wins football games. No one understands that better than Tennessee Vols head coach Jeremy Pruitt.

But the environment that surrounds a football program is as equally important as the talent on the roster. If there’s a bad culture, the program will suffer.

So while Pruitt is working overtime trying to rebuild Tennessee’s roster after Butch Jones demolished it, he’s also making sure the environment is where it needs to be.

Fortunately for the Vols, and the passionate UT fan base, Pruitt believes he has the environment where it needs to be for the program to be successful.

What Pruitt is saying isn’t just lip service. The current players on the roster are working just as hard as the coaching staff to recruit top talent to Tennessee. If the environment was bad, you wouldn’t see that kind of effort from the current players.

The UT fan base has always showed up in droves, but it’s important not to discount their contributions to the environment at Tennessee. When a fan base shows up for a spring game for a program coming off back-to-back losing seasons, it sends a big message to recruits.

The message, essentially, is “if this is the fan support when the program is losing, imagine when it is when the Vols are winning 10 games a year on a regular basis”. That’s something that resonates with recruits.

Pruitt definitely has a lot of positive momentum going for Tennessee right now. But so did his predecessor at one point. It’s important that Pruitt stays locked in on his goal and doesn’t let a few failures here and there alter his plan.

The Vols are on the right path. It might take them a couple more seasons to get where they want to be, but Pruitt certainly has the ability to get them there.

Featured image via Randy Sartin-USA TODAY Sports

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