However, that sentiment came to a crashing halt after the four-overtime loss to Missouri on Saturday. That should be the final nail in the coffin for Dooley at Tennessee who has proved to be consistently inconsistent in his time in Knoxville.
Keeping Dooley on campus for a fourth season would just be prolonging the inevitable and finding a coach that could change the culture of losing and bring a defensive mindset comparable to the elite teams in the SEC.
I view Tennessee as a sleeping giant that is fully capable of returning to greatness in the SEC east.
When I look around the conference and see Mississippi State and Ole Miss making rapid improvements with their head coaches Dan Mullen and Hugh Freeze, respectively, with far less resources than Tennessee and the opportunity is there for the Volunteers to make a similar leap and return to relevance.
The $5 million buyout is nothing for Tennessee and instead of treading water in 2013 need to fire Dooley immediately and start the search for his replacement.
A number of prime candidate to succeed Dooley are on this list of the hottest coaching candidates and some even have SEC ties.
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Patrick is a diehard Chicago sports and an avid college football fan, and host of “The Wake-up Call,” a weekly sports show on Sportstownchicago.com airing live on Wednesday mornings from 8-10. View his show’s website here.