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Posted: Tuesday, June 20th, 2017, 7:50 AM
Your Vol Colonel and MY Vol Colonel leads off on this Tuesday morning.

Vol Colonel
'Off the top today, if you missed Phil Steele on TB's show Monday, I'd highly suggest you pull it up in the archives here at and give it a listen. Phil had some eye-popping things to say about this year's Vols.

Phil Steele for my money is the best in the business. Nobody puts in the time and effort he does in researching college football teams. Phil had position group rankings for every team in the SEC. If Phil is on the money about where the Vols rank at the positions, then we have more problems than even I think we have!

You can go across the board from running backs to linebackers and all around the field and Steele has the Vols anywhere from middle of the pack to the back end in these position rankings and more so on the back end than the middle. I think he listed our RB's at 9th best in the SEC. QB's were something like 12th best in the league and so on.

If Butch Jones is this elite recruiter that a lot of folks think he is, then how in the heck does Phil Steele have us ranked so poorly against the rest of the SEC at the various positions? What gives here? We're entering year 5 here, folks!

Are we getting the wool pulled over our eyes? Maybe, just maybe, this cat isn't the great recruiter that some people think he is. That big legacy class that brought in the likes of TK Jr. was supposed to be a great class, right?.. Well, the problem is over 60% of that class is no longer on campus. Many transferred or quit the program or moved on for one reason or another.

Coach Jones is getting a lot of pop right now in the recruiting circles. We have a top 10 2018 class as things stand right now, but where will things stack up when it's time for these young men to sign on the dotted line? It all sounds good right now, but heck, it's June. These verbal's mean nothing until they sign. It is good press though!

Are we not developing these recruits after they get here? Is that the problem? Again, it's year #5. I'm not saying Phil Steele is the be all, end all, but he clearly knows his stuff. To hear him rattle off our position rankings vs the rest of the SEC was quite alarming to me.

I know me and Tony differ on this, but I'm starting to side with some of these national writers that have Butch on the hot seat. After hearing Phil Steele I can see how Butch is on that hot seat, not to mention he couldn't win a down eastern division the last two years and let's not forget he lost to South Carolina and Vanderbilt last season.

I know some of you will read this and say I'm a Nega-Vol, but I call it just like I see it. I love Tennessee Football and I worry our standards and expectations have been lowered.

Phillip Fulmer just gave Butch a big vote of confidence going as far as saying a 9 win season is great. Phil even reminded us where we were just 4 short years ago. Note to Coach Fulmer : a 9 win season is not great! Seriously, what in the hell is great about a 9 win season?

First off, Butch Jones has never won 9 games in the regular season here and it's year #5. He's won 8 games in the regular season here twice and that's great? It sounds better to say it's a 9 win season by including the bowl victories over those slow, crappy Big Ten teams doesn't it?

I'm not trying to short change Butch here. I'm well aware we've finished the last two complete seasons with 9 wins, but it sure feels like some spin to me. We've finished the last two regular seasons at 8-4. Somehow what gets lost in all this great spin, is the fact that we've lost 4 regular season games in each of the last two years!

Everybody wants to tell us that this year we could take a little step back. We have to replace Dobbs, Kamara, Cam Sutton, Reeves-Maybin and a few others. Does that mean in year #5 that losing 5 games is acceptable?

Losing 5 games would be a small step back, wouldn't it? Is that acceptable to y'all?

Let me assure you, it isn't acceptable to me! Pardon me, if I rub some of you the wrong way, but if you think, along with Coach Fulmer, that 8-4 regular seasons are great, then I guess my definition of great is far different from yours. Eat all that 9 win spin you can stand!

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I had to get this off of my chest today. Phil Steele really hit a nerve with me with those rankings. It really made me do some thinking. I'm sick of hearing about 9 wins. Funny how we never hear about those 4 losses, but hey, I get it, let's accentuate the positive.

Pardon me for wanting more!

Y'all know where I stand! If you have any questions or comments or if you just want to cuss me upside-down, you can find me on Twitter @TheVolColonel or you can email me at

Have a Great Day and Go Big Orange!

Your Vol Colonel'

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Vol Colonel: Love the passion today. I couldn't disagree with you more on Butch Jones. He IS A GREAT RECRUITER. The problem here under him has been player development, retention and luck. Put it this way, if I was to tell anyone reading this that neither McKenzie nor Tuttle would've done much to this point. While we're on the subject, how about poor Phillips? And this is where it begins for SEC Championship contending teams. The biggest difference from the end of the Johnny Majors era to the Phillip Fulmer sweet spot was D-Line recruiting. This is where championships are won. All of these guys are potentially world class players. As for Phil Steele's QB ratings...He has Tennessee #9 in the SEC. If that tandem of young QB's is #9 in this league at year's end I'll eat any two Phil Steele annuals you can produce. Steele also has Tennessee's running backs #10. Again he has them undervalued compared to the rest of the SEC. And Colonel, I love Phil Steele. To some extent, Tennessee deserves the ranking he's assigned but in many places this is due to guys that haven't been seen yet.

Phil Steele has UT Ranked as follows versus the SEC: QB's: 12th RB's: 10th WR's: 10th OL: 6th DL: 8th LB's: 5th DB's: 6th ST's: 2nd Coaching: 8th

Poor Butch Jones is 8th??? In this league???? I don't know how to feel about Jones. The conclusion I keep reaching is that Butch Jones is one of the pack in this league. That said, the whole league is nothing but a coaching blob. The SEC is Saban and everybody else. Look at the inward migration of coaches to the SEC. Where do they come from? Lesser leagues. The only Power Five Conference coach migrating into this league is at Arkansas. Everybody else is everybody else. Compare this to the Big 10 where Harbaugh came from Michigan while Meyer came from the SEC as did James Franklin. Not only do these three ply their trade there but a guy like Mark Dantonio is no slouch. So, if you want to call Butch Jones 8th, fine but he could just as easily be 4th in this league.

As far as the other ratings Steele has ascribed to the Vols, I think he mostly has it right. I would have UT's OL higher but I can see why he doesn't. The guys on that line haven't been consistent through time.

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Can Tanner Ingle play? I don't know but he has an awesome offer list. Link

Wow. Saban...Wow....Link

Rocky Top League Got underway last night. Jalen Johnson had 7 points on 3-10 shooting while Jordan Bowden had 12 points on 5-12 shooting. Must've been a slow night for the Vols in that thing.

This guy has to contribute if the hoops Vols are going to win. Link

T B Nation:


Clearly then, what this young man needs to do is to get a mask and continue making his YouTube videos anyway. Perhaps under the name, "Not Donald DeLa Haye." Better still, ask Laremy Tunsil if he can borrow his gas mask. That way his likeness isn't on there and everyone's happy.

Perhaps even better get a mask with the NCAA President's face on it. Spoof them. Spoof them all!!! Mock the hell out of them and let the NCAA auto delegitimize.

Eric S

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The aforementioned Jim Harbaugh is super slick. Link

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