How this Tennessee Vols blog predicted John Currie fiasco nine months earlier

KNOXVILLE, TN - SEPTEMBER 15: A view of the inside of Neyland Stadium during a game between the Florida Gators and Tennessee Volunteers on September 15, 2012 in Knoxville, Tennessee. (Photo by John Sommers II/Getty Images)
KNOXVILLE, TN - SEPTEMBER 15: A view of the inside of Neyland Stadium during a game between the Florida Gators and Tennessee Volunteers on September 15, 2012 in Knoxville, Tennessee. (Photo by John Sommers II/Getty Images) /

We at All for Tennessee predicted the John Currie fiasco with the Volunteers nine months before it happened. Here is how this Tennessee Vols blog did that.

When the Tennessee Vols hired John Currie at the end of February in 2017, we went out of our way to criticize the move. We then spent the football season warning fans of how bad things could get if a coaching search were to take place.

Well, it did. And what we at All for Tennessee saw became public for everybody. Well, it’s finally over. John Currie and the Tennessee Vols have finally reached a settlement Thursday. There is closure between the two sides, and it came with a hefty does of drama on Friday morning.

Emails and text messages released detailed Currie’s final days on the job in late November and December. We broke down how hectic that was, and you can see that here.

However, that’s not what this post was about. This post is about what we saw when John Currie first took the job, and what everybody should have seen. We’ll break everything down by each post we wrote on the matter.

Feb. 28, 2017: 4 reasons John Currie is an awful hire 

When the Tennessee Vols first hired Currie, if you remember, it was a bit of a shock. People were wondering why it wasn’t Dave Blackburn or Phillip Fulmer. Chancellor Davenport’s argument was that she wanted a guy with experience.

Not knowing anything yet about the details of the hire, we at this post knew that this was a terrible move.

All you needed was Currie’s decision to run off Frank Martin and hire Bruce Weber as head coach while athletic director of the Kansas State Wildcats. Weber was fired by the Illinois Fighting Illini.

Literally a month later, Martin had the South Carolina Gamecocks in the Final Four. But if that wasn’t enough, he was also the guy who pushed for Lane Kiffin as assistant A.D. at Tennessee in 2008.

Both were terrible moves, but they demonstrated an arrogant athletic director who thought he was smarter than fans and other administrators. Currie also showed he can’t evaluate coaches at all. That should have been a sign immediately. But the next week, things got more clear.

March 2, 2017: Details of Currie hire point to Jimmy Haslam

Just two days after the first post, we released this one. It analyzed the details Jimmy Hyams provided here on what went into hiring Currie. The thing that stood out the most was the fact that Jimmy Haslam was behind it.

Everybody who’s anybody with the university held Haslam in high esteem. His brother is the governor, and he’s the top booster for the school. However, we did the crazy thing and looked at his background. And it showed that Haslam was not worthy of such respect.

Haslam is a complete failure as the owner of the Cleveland Browns. He is also a failed businessman. His company, given to him by his daddy, was billions of dollars in debt in 2013. They also got hit with a rebate fraud scandal, which was just wrapping up last month.

Meanwhile, he had been making the decisions for the Tennessee Vols for years. And Currie was just another one of his decisions.

That meant one of two things: Currie would be an awful athletic director given the fact that anything Haslam thinks is good is bad, or he would be Haslam’s puppet, which is also bad. The fact that the university listened to Haslam here again showed more failure on their part.

Oct. 23, 2017: Jimmy Haslam could botch Vols coaching search

We wrote this towards the end of October when Butch Jones was on the hot seat. It was clear that he was about to be fired by the Tennessee Vols. But what only seemed clear to me was the fact that Jimmy Haslam would be pulling John Currie’s strings to find the new coach.

And I warned everybody then that Haslam’s record as a complete failure could mess up the coaching search. He loses at everything he does, and in this case, he was going to lose again with the coaching search.

Nov. 26, 2017: Jimmy Haslam looks to be behind Schiano move

The same day the Greg Schiano fiasco happened, all the focus was on John Currie and his incompetence with the Tennessee Vols. But we saw the real story first, which is that Jimmy Haslam was behind the move.

All we had to do was look back at Haslam’s track record and the fact that he was the only NFL owner who wanted to hire Schiano back in 2014 after the Tampa Bay Buccaneers fired him. It was so obvious that Haslam was pulling Currie’s strings.

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After all of this happened, we were eventually proven right on everything. Clay Travis broke everything down in this Outkick the Coverage article on Dec. 1. Pretty much everything we warned about back in February came true.

An AP report leaked that Jimmy Haslam was calling state legislatures saying that he makes the hire for Tennessee Vols football coaches, pretty much affirming he was behind John Currie’s decisions. By the way, as this happened, his company was on trial for its fraud scheme while his Cleveland Browns were stumbling to an 0-16 season, a year after going 1-15.

Currie made a last-ditch effort to save his job by trying to get Mike Leach. But that validated our warnings that he can’t identify talent, because before that he was going for Dave Doeren. Nobody with eyes thinks Doeren is a better coach than Leach. Simply put, everything we warned about happened. So we have to give ourselves credit for it.