Almost a decade ago, I wrote a piece slamming then-Tennessee athletic director Mike Hamilton in the wake of the news surrounding then-basketball coach Bruce Pearl.
At the time, Hamilton, who hired Lane Kiffin to replace Phil Fulmer as football coach and Todd Raleigh to replace Rod Delemimco as head baseball coach, had the virtues of Bruce Pearl to hang his hat on. After all, months earlier, Pearl had taken Tennessee to their first-ever Elite Eight and two years prior, a #1 ranking.
So when Bruce Pearl got busted for lying to the NCAA, Hamilton could have easily fired Pearl with cause and got a jumpstart on the coaching search.
Except he didn’t.
Despite the fact that Pearl served a suspension for the NCAA mess, Hamilton stuck by him for 2010-11, only to fire him after a listless showing in the NCAA Tournament.
Sure, Hamilton was the guy who hired Cuonzo Martin, but I always thought that he should have followed Bruce Pearl out the door, which happened after the fact.
Over the last 24 hours, Tennessee fans on social media led a revolt against athletic director John Currie’s pick for head football coach, former Rutgers head coach Greg Schiano.
That’s right, the guy who got cursed out by a Tennessee legend, had a smear campaign against one of his players in Tampa Bay, was Currie’s pick for head coach, drawing the justifiable ire of Vol fans. And while some of it was due to the allegations that Schiano covered up child rape at Penn State, some of it also was geared from the fact Schiano went 68-67 at Rutgers and couldn’t win a conference championship in the Big East.
While this would have been a solid hire in maybe 2008 or 2009, attempting to hire a retread, which John Currie did with basketball at Kansas State after pushing out Frank Martin, a retread hire doesn’t work at a place like Tennessee.
You don’t emerge 15 days later and present your fanbase with Greg Schiano.
That’s the equivalent of presenting dogshit to Gordon Ramsay and proclaiming it as a culinary masterpiece.
So no, don’t be angry at the Vol fans for their protest.
Be angry at the man who has a picture of himself with the words, “Will It Help Us Win?”
Because at the rate John Currie is going, he’s doing more harm than good to the University of Tennessee.