Posted by Adam Jacobi
Philip Fulmer, the longtime Tennessee Volunteers coach who was ousted after a 5-7 season in 2008, appeared on CBS' College Football Today earlier today, and the subject of Lane Kiffin and his tenure at Tennessee came up. As you might expect, Fulmer had an opinion or two about Kiffin:
(On Lane Kiffin Leaving Tennessee after one year)
FULMER: Tennessee is a very proud program as we all know with great traditions and the people of Tennessee felt betrayed to be honest with you. They were embarrassed, felt jilted with all the cost of the change there was. Kiffin, he left Tennessee with basically his hat in his hand and a bunch of NCAA compliance questions. Many in our community are glad that he is gone. He never really embraced the traditions, the values of the program or the community for that matter. And often his arrogant attitude turned people off. The bigger question in my opinion is how does a guy like this end up with two jobs with historic football teams like Tennessee and USC…
(On college football being hurt by hiring of so called gun-slingers and rock-star coaches and really moving away from guys like Fulmer, Joe Paterno, Bobby Bowden and the like)
FULMER: You know we probably have been our own worst enemies in some cases because of the money. It’s become an entertainment industry if you will. I do think that we are missing some of the values that are out there, that the experience and the maturity older coaches can bring. But it’s changed and we have to change with the times.
Fulmer, of course, has a point; while the notion that "there's no such thing as bad publicity" has some merit to it, the point of college football isn't to win media cycles or stay in the headlines, it's to win football games, and there's little evidence to suggest that Kiffin has ever possessed the skill set to organize a winning program.