Tennessee fires head coach Butch Jones

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee fired coach Butch Jones on Sunday with two games left in a regular season in which the Volunteers started ranked but are now still winless in the Southeastern Conference.

Vols athletic director John Currie said defensive line coach Brady Hoke would serve as interim head coach for the remainder of the season. The move has seemed almost inevitable for weeks.

“Unfortunately, we are not where we need to be competitively,” Currie said in a statement. “For that reason, I have asked Coach Jones to step down as head football coach. I know Coach Jones will be successful moving forward, and we wish him all the best in his future endeavors.”

Jones went 34-27 overall and 14-24 in the SEC over five seasons. He led the Vols to bowl victories each of the last three years before the program took a giant step backward this fall.

Tennessee (4-6, 0-6 SEC) has dropped five of its last six games, including a 50-17 loss to Missouri on Saturday.

Jones was making $4.1 million annually and has a contract that runs through Feb. 28, 2021. His buyout states that if he’s fired without cause, Tennessee would owe him over $8 million. That figure could be mitigated if he does land another position.

Jones inherited a program that had posted three straight losing seasons under coach

Article source: https://www.foxsports.com/southwest/story/tennessee-fires-head-coach-butch-jones-111217

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