Earlier this week, I suggested that Tennessee Vols inside linebackers coach/special teams coordinator Kevin Sherrer could be an option for Sam Pittman at Arkansas.
Sherrer isn’t the only Vol assistant that might be coveted by another program.
(Update: Arkansas is reportedly set to hire former Missouri head coach Barry Odom as their defensive coordinator.)
Running backs coach David Johnson is a name to watch at Florida State.
Before joining Jeremy Pruitt’s staff at Tennessee, Johnson coached for two seasons at Memphis alongside Mike Norvell as the Tigers’ passing game coordinator/wide receivers coach.
Norvell, who was hired by Florida State earlier this month to replace Willie Taggart as the Seminoles’ head coach, has already hired Kenny Dillingham as his offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach.
But there could still could be room for Johnson on Norvell’s staff, in a position that is considered a promotion.
Ryan Silverfield served as Norvell’s co-offensive coordinator at Memphis. He’s currently the Tigers’ interim head coach and he has a legitimate shot to be the permanent head coach in Memphis. If that happens, then it’s possible that Norvell could bring Johnson to Florida State as his wide receivers coach/co-offensive coordinator.
(Update: Silverfield has been hired as the head coach at Memphis.)
In 2017, Johnson turned down an opportunity to join LSU’s staff in part because of his relationship with Norvell. Johnson told the Commercial Appeal that Norvell was “key” in his decision to stay at Memphis.
Johnson is currently making $500,000 annually on Pruitt’s staff, so luring him to Tallahassee would require a financial commitment from Florida State.
But it would certainly be worth it for the Seminoles.
Johnson’s ability to recruit the Memphis area has proved to be invaluable for Tennessee. That’s why the Vols need to make sure they keep the New Orleans native from heading south to Florida State.
Staff movement in college football is common, but it would be wise for the Vols to do whatever they can to keep the bulk of Pruitt’s staff together.
Tennessee already has one of the highest paid coaching staffs in the country, but they’ll probably need to hand out some raises to keep Pruitt’s outstanding group of assistants together.
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