On Thursday, Tennessee and athletic director Phillip Fulmer named Alabama defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt the 26th head coach in program history.
After a well-received introductory press conference in which Pruitt laid out his plan to make Tennessee into a team “that nobody in the SEC wants to play,” Vol Nation feels excited for the new era of Tennessee football, especially after a long and often surreal coaching search.
Now that the Vols have their man for the future, here’s a look at Jeremy Pruitt by the numbers:
2 – Pruitt is the second head coach in Tennessee history to have played his college football at Alabama — the other being Bill Battle. Pruitt transferred to play defensive back at ‘Bama in 1995 after spending two years at MTSU. Pruitt played for the final two squads of Hall of Fame coach Gene Stallings’ tenure. In the two on-field meetings with his future team and boss (then-coach Fulmer), Pruitt’s team lost 41-14 in ’95 and 20-13 in ’96.
4 – The number of national title-winning teams that Pruitt has been a part of in his college coaching career. His first three titles came during his first stint at Alabama as the director of player development (2009) and defensive backs coach (’11, ’12). Pruitt’s first title as a full-time defensive coordinator came in 2013 as Florida State’s defensive coordinators. That year, the Seminoles finished first in scoring defense (12.1 points per game) and third in total defense (281.4 yards per game).
6 – The number of new staff members — as of Saturday — Pruitt has brought in to Knoxville that have SEC coaching experience. The new coach has wasted little time in putting together an impressive staff. Notable names include VFL and former All-SEC defensive back Terry Fair, former Heisman Trophy winner Chris Weinke, former UGA offensive line coach Will Friend and defensive line coaches Chris Rumph and Tracy Rocker — coaches at Florida and Georgia, respectively. How many more will we see Pruitt add by the time his staff member limit is reached?
8 – The number of games that Pruitt has lost as a defensive coordinator in college. Six of his eight losses came as Georgia’s defensive coordinator and he has only been a part of two losses after returning to Alabama, with one coming on the last play of last year’s national title game against Clemson.
11.5 – The average points per game that Pruitt’s defense at Alabama has allowed this season, which ranks first in the nation. Pruitt’s unit leads the SEC in interceptions (15) and ranks in the top five in the conference in sacks (31). Thus far, Pruitt has improved upon his first season as the Tide’s defensive coach last season, when it was also first in the nation in scoring defense (13 PPG).
21 – The total number of seasons that Pruitt spent coaching before becoming Tennessee’s head coach. After starting out as a graduate assistant at Alabama in 1997, Pruitt spent nearly a decade in Alabama high school football — most notably at state powerhouse Hoover — with the exception of a stop as West Alabama’s defensive backs coach in 1999. In college, Pruitt has spent eight of his 11 seasons on Nick Saban’s staff at Alabama, with stops at Florida State (2013) and Georgia (2014-15) in between.
34 – The number of NFL draft picks Pruitt has coached. Pruitt has a laundry list of talented names that he has both recruited and helped send to the pros. Notable players that have either been coached or recruited by him include Jalen Ramsey, Derrick Henry, Jonathan Allen, Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, Lamarcus Joyner and Reuben Foster, among others.
43 – Pruitt’s age, which makes him the fourth-youngest head coach in the SEC. The Rainsville, Alabama, native may have a more youthful side to him than other coaches in the conference, but already has two decades of coaching experience under his belt.
128 – The number of wins attributed to Pruitt as a collegiate assistant (128-31 overall). While there’s no such thing as an official assistant win/loss record, this shows just how many successful programs that Pruitt has been a part of throughout his career.
2005 – It’s made its rounds across the internet, but you have to point out that this was the year in which Pruitt learned what asparagus was for the first time in his life. The moment was documented during Pruitt’s time as Hoover’s defensive coordinator on the 2006 MTV reality show Two-A-Days.