John Currie has been fired as Tennessee’s athletic director just eight months after taking over for Dave Hart. The move comes in the midst of a coaching search that has brought embarrassment to the University.
Currie was previously the athletics director at Kansas State after serving in different capacities in Tennessee’s athletic department from 1997-98 and 2000-09. He left Knoxville in 2009 to accept the Wildcats’ vacant athletic director position. Currie earned his master’s degree from Tennessee.
After firing Butch Jones on Nov. 12, Currie led a coaching search that has brought national embarrassment to the University and raised tension amongst the fan base and administration as multiple coaches have turned Tennessee down.
Last Sunday, when reports surfaced that Tennessee would be hiring Ohio State defensive coordinator Greg Schiano, Tennessee fans revolted due to Schiano’s potential involvement in the Jerry Sandusky scandal at Penn State.
The situation brought on the ire of national media members all over the country, painting the University in a bad light as tension continued to rise.
On Wednesday, tension continued to rise after Currie targeted NC State head coach Dave Doeren. The Wolfpack would later give Doeren an extension, much to the pleasure of Vol fans as they were unhappy with the potential hire.
Currie has also drawn a lot of negativity from former players for not reaching out to USC offensive coordinator Tee Martin. In 1998, Martin led Tennessee to a National Championship as the team’s star quarterback. Despite being one of the best assistant coaches in all of college football, Martin has not been contacted in relation to the Vols vacant head coach position.
Chancellor Davenport will hold a press conference this afternoon at the Ray and Lucy Hand Digital Studio on campus at 4 p.m.
According to John Brice of Gridiron Now, it is expected that former Tennessee head football coach Phillip Fulmer will be introduced as the Vols next athletic director. It is to be determined whether it will be on an interim basis or full-time. The Hall of Fame winning coach was up for the job in the spring, but Tennessee’s administration chose to hire Currie.
Edited by Seth Raborn
Photo courtesy of UT Sports