Jeremy Pruitt and the 2019 Tennessee Vols are off to the worst start possible. The Vols are 0-2 with two bad losses but can bounce back Week 3.
Jeremy Pruitt gave his pitch to the Knoxville Quarterbacks Club on Monday. With this, he asked the members to stick with him because, in the end, we’re going to want to be on his side.
"“We’re working our way out of the wilderness right now, but I can tell you, you want me on your side,” Pruitt said."
I, along with a lot of other fans, are not happy with the 0-2 start. No coach should lose to Georgia State, and BYU with the team Tennessee has. I know that they’re not great, but there was potential for a seven or eight-win season this year.
With those high expectations comes disappointing moments throughout the season. We should know this better than anyone. If there are high expectations, then something is bound to go sideways at some point but here’s what Pruitt had to say about the 0-2 start.
"“I’m standing here today, I could make a lot of excuses about why these games haven’t gone the way we wanted them to go,” Pruitt said. “I can assure you of this, when we’re busting our tails during the summer, fall camp, all of that, we didn’t envision being 0-2. But you know what? It’s what we are. And the fastest way to fix it is to own it. You look around, you see where you’re at, how you got there. I don’t blame anybody but me because my name is at the top of the chain. That’s one way that I operate. You better go look in the mirror before you start pointing fingers, so I can assure you that we’re going to look in the mirror at the University of Tennessee.”"
Pruitt has faith he will turn things around, and it starts with Chattanooga this Saturday. We’ve already lost to the worst team on our schedule so frankly, the only way to turn this around is to let the boys go out there and play loose.
The coaching staff needs to coach loose, not too loose like Georgia State, but make sure the player’s confidence is there. Call plays you know they can succeed on.
With JG, give him some easy reads and give him some easy throws to get him going. A lot of coaches resort to going back to the basics when things like this happen, and that’s what the Vols need to do on Saturday.
We don’t need to call crazy complex defenses it’s Chattanooga. I’m not saying overlook them, but Henry To’o To’o is still a freshman with only two games under his belt. Give him easy plays to call and run. Ease the defense into different things throughout the game.
I want and expect Tennessee to win on Saturday, but if they go out there and look really sloppy again, we won’t get anywhere all year. Win or lose the Vols need to capitalize on the fundamentals. If we can’t successfully run fundamental plays, we’re in more trouble than we thought.
Once we can get the fundamentals down in-game, we can do other things, but through the first two weeks, we haven’t been able to do that. Pruitt knows that, and that’s a bold statement to make knowing that.
I’d say, for the most part, we’re with you right now, so take that and fix what has happened and turn things around. We have some great coaches on our staff and some players that can be lethal on both sides of the ball if they’re used right.
This Saturday has to be when things are turned around, and the fundamentals are executed to perfection. If not, well, I hope you’re ready for a beat down in the swamp because that’s what’s coming against Florida.