Tennessee has sputtered to an 0-2 record out of the gate with losses to Georgia State and BYU, turned into an organizational mess and the thought of a potential bowl game around the holidays seems more like a pipedream than a possibility. To compound the problem, players were jumping ship throughout the offseason, while defensive back Terrell Bailey and wide receiver Jordan Murphy bailed after the Week 1 loss to the Panthers.
It's safe to say that Tennessee is a mess, and coach Jeremy Pruitt clearly knows it. The second-year coach of the Volunteers spoke at the Knoxville QB Club on Monday where he compared players leaving the program to a scene from the movie "Titanic" when the ship was headed under water.
"I think 'Titanic' came out maybe when I was in college," Pruitt said, according to the Knoxville News-Sentinel. "When the boat starts going down, remember all the mice running to the top, right? We have had a few that left our program, but you will figure out who wants to be a Tennessee Vol and who don't. I can tell you this: I want to. I know the standards and expectations that we have and the men on our staff and the character that we have. You will see the best of the players at Tennessee throughout the year."
In case you aren't a fan of history, the Titanic was a luxury cruise ship that sank in its maiden voyage in 1912. So ... apparently Pruitt thinks his program is comparable to the Titanic? That's not exactly reassuring if you're a Tennessee fan.
After watching Tennessee play this year, the comparison does make sense, though. The coaching staff has looked disinterested and discombobulated in both games this year. To the credit of the players, they looked ready to go against Georgia State and BYU but were often confused by what they were being asked to do. Could it be a case of the staff over-coaching and overcomplicating things? It sure looks like it.
For what it's worth, Pruitt did notice how hard his players worked on Saturday in the loss to BYU.
"The way I look at this, the last two weeks are over with," he said. "We had 60 minutes to change the the last two Saturdays at Neyland Stadium. We have to move forward. Did we improve the first week to the second week? Absolutely. We have to continue to do that because we have a young, inexperienced football team."
Tennessee will look to get in the win column for the first time this season when they host Chattanooga on Saturday at noon ET.