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Rivals 3 Stripe Camp Nashville survey: Players weigh in on Pruitt

CLASS OF 2019 RANKINGS: Rivals250 | State | Position | Team

Jeremy Pruitt
Jeremy Pruitt (AP Images)

NASHVILLE -- It’s been six months since Tennessee put an end to its tumultuous coaching search and hired former Alabama defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt to take over the job vacated by Butch Jones. With top talent from Tennessee, Alabama and Georgia on hand at this past weekend’s Nashville stop of the Rivals 3 Stripe Camp Series, we decided to catch up with the players to get their impressions of the Vols hire, as well as their expectations for his first season in Knoxville.

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What did you think when Jeremy Pruitt was hired as the Tennessee head coach?  

“I thought it was a good decision. I like him a lot. ... Me and him just vibe together.” Rivals100 wide receiver Trey Knox

“I thought it was great because he’s won championships and has produced players.” Rivals100 defensive back Woodi Washington

“Their defense is going to be better and they aren’t going to accept anything except the best players to come in.” Rivals250 defensive back Adonis Otey

"Coach Pruitt's background with Nick Saban likely makes him a good hire for Tennessee. He has a great background and he is going to put great coaches around him." Rivals100 Auburn quarterback commit Bo Nix

"Tennessee is getting a good coach and it could be a great hire for them. I think he turns their program around." 2020 four-star Alabama wide receiver commit Dazalin Worsham

"I think it is a really good hire. I think he will do a great job with the players on and off the field. He will get his players to play hard for him and I think he makes that program stand out." – Three-star quarterback Zach Calzada

“When I saw he got hired I thought it was a great fit for him and their program.” Three-star Louisville quarterback commit Jaden Johnson

“I think Coach Pruitt is a great coach. He was the one who wanted me at Alabama. I haven’t talked to them much since he got to Tennessee, though. I don’t know if I’m the kind of guy they are looking for in their scheme.” Rivals250 linebacker Jackson Hannah

"He has a great history at Alabama, so I see him making a big change at Tennessee and being a great hire for them." Three-star defensive back Jaydon Hill

"It was a great hire for Tennessee. I see him picking the Tennessee program up. He was a great coach at Alabama." 2020 defensive back Malachi Moore

"I kind of saw this hire coming, so it was not a surprise or anything. He was a great coach at Alabama and he will be good at Tennessee, too." Three-star athlete Jamil Muhammad

"I see him being successful at Tennessee, so I think it was a great hire." Three-star athlete Reddy Steward

Have you had a chance to meet him? What were your impressions of him? 

“I thought he was going to be very intense, but he’s very laid back when you talk to him. He just crosses his legs and speaks to you. He’s just very laid back and he’s cool. I like him as a coach.” – Knox

“He’s straightforward and he’s going to go keep it real. He told us what we need to work on and I feel like I needed that from a college coach.” – Otey

"He is a great guy to talk to. He is real. He is straightforward and always honest." - Worsham

“I like him. He’s straight up with you.” – Washington

"He is very serious about football and he is all about business. I really like how he does not sugar-coat anything." - Hill

"He keeps it real and I like this. He does not play around, but he is always up front and honest." – Moore

"He is someone that should be around college football players. He can develop players and people." - Calzada

"He is just a great person. He is down to earth and he is about business. He is always honest, too." - Muhammad

"Pruitt brings a lot of energy, he is a very smart coach and all that shows when you are around him." - Steward

"He is a great guy that knows what he is doing. He is great scheming on the football field." - Nix

How many games do you think Tennessee will win this year?  

Athletic director Phillip Fulmer and Pruitt
Athletic director Phillip Fulmer and Pruitt (AP Images)

“I say they should win a lot more than they will lose. I think they might lose to Georgia and Alabama but I think those are the only two teams that are going to beat them for sure.” – Otey

“I think they’re going to win a solid eight games.” – Knox

“I think they win nine games next year.” – Washington

"I see Tennessee winning six to eight games this season." - Moore

"I see them playing in a lot of close games. I am going with eight or nine wins this season." - Calzada

"I'd say six to eight games." - Worsham

"In his first year, it will be tough. But I see him winning six to seven games." - Hill

"I have Tennessee winning about seven or eight games. I see him having a successful season." - Muhammad

"I think he wins nine to 10 games." – Steward

"I think he wins six or more games and makes a bowl game in his first year." – Nix

“I think they should win about seven games. I think that’s a fair expectation for a new head coach.” – Johnson

“I think they will win six games this year at most. They are rebuilding and it’s a rebuilding year for them. I think this year they will be better than last year, though.” – Hannah