It’s official. Alabama defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt has been hired as the head football coach of the Tennessee Volunteers.
Pruitt was announced as the coach by Tennessee late Thursday morning and will become the program’s 26th head coach.
“Six days ago, I mentioned several attributes that I sought to find in the next leader of our football program, and Coach Pruitt meets all criteria” new Tennessee athletic director Phillip Fulmer said in the program’s release. “I’m certain he appreciates the unique opportunity to lead a program of Tennessee’s caliber. He’s driven to win at the highest level. He will honor our university’s values, operate with integrity and be a role model for our student-athletes.
“I know Coach Pruitt will hit the ground running and go to work restoring our program to a championship level.”
Fulmer and other members of the Volunteer program met with Pruitt two times, on both Monday and Wednesday. The group finally sealed the deal, selecting Pruitt over Auburn’s Kevin Steele and Georgia’s Mel Tucker.
Pruitt began his football career playing at Middle Tennessee State before transferring to Alabama. After he finished two walk-on years, he became a student coaching assistant.
After spending several years coaching high school, Saban hired him to his Alabama Staff in 2007.
Pruitt has since been an integral part of improving Florida State and Georgia defensively. Of course, Pruitt has spent the last two seasons creating the best defense in the country at Alabama.
In his career as an assistant coach, Pruitt has a 128-31 record and has coached 34 NFL draft picks and 11 first-team All-Americans.