UT Coach Canales talks about differences in quarterbacks
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (UTSports.com)– The Tennessee football team has one of the nation's top head coaches in Butch Jones – a leader who has led the Vols to three consecutive winning seasons, including back-to-back nine-win campaigns.
Jones will enter his 11th season as a head coach in 2017 with unquestionably one of the nation's top coaching staffs. Four of the Vols' assistants have previous experience as head coaches at the NCAA Division I level, giving UT an impressive collection of mentors at the top of the college football ladder.
Associate head coach/defensive line coach Brady Hoke has been a conference coach of the year in three different leagues during stints at Ball State (2003-08), San Diego State (2009-10) and Michigan (2011-14), while defensive coordinator Bob Shoop was the head coach at Columbia from 2003-05. Offensive coordinator/tight ends coach Larry Scott spent the second half of the 2015 season as the interim head coach at Miami (Fla.) and quarterbacks coach Mike Canales spent parts of two seasons as the interim head coach at North Texas in 2010 and 2015.
Hoke and Canales will enter their first season with the Vols this fall. Shoop begins his second season as defensive coordinator. Scott enters his second season on Rocky Top, and his first as offensive coordinator.
The four assistants talked to the media on Friday about their experiences as head coaches and took questions on the upcoming season with fall camp set to start on July 29.
"There's not a day that we come into work that we don't enjoy working with one another in the defensive room, offense and defense, and the quality controls and the graduate assistants," said Shoop, who has 28 years of college coaching experience, including the last six years as a Power 5 defensive coordinator.
"We've assembled a big-league staff and most importantly it's a good group of men, leaders, teachers, role models and mentors who happen to be good football coaches."
Hoke was one the nation's most impressive hires this offseason. A veteran of 33 years coaching experience at the collegiate level, Hoke has seen 39 of his players get drafted as a head coach. He was named Big Ten Coach of the Year in 2011 and collected the same honor from the Mountain West Conference in 2010 and from the Mid-American Conference in 2008.
Scott led Miami to the Sun Bowl finished with a 4-2 record as the head coach for the Hurricanes during the second half of the 2015 season. He was hired as Tennessee's tight ends coach in 2015 before being promoted this offseason.
Canales served as the head coach at North Texas for five games in 2010 and seven games in 2015. On of college football's top developers of quarterbacks, he has 32 years of coaching experience, including 23 years as an offensive coordinator. He watched Jones' rise to a top head coach from afar and has been impressed with Tennessee's success in recent years. Canales said he will take his lessons learned as a head coach into his position room.
"Being here where I've had a chance to watch Coach Jones' career, his development and his growth as he climbed the ladder into this position at the University of Tennessee and being good friends and watching what he's done, it's been good for me to be here in this situation where I just get to coach a room," Canales said. "I know I am the CEO of our quarterback room. I think that's important that they understand that I've been a coordinator, a quarterback coach and a head coach. I think Coach Jones values the opinions that we have, but it also gives me a chance to work my room and give them my philosophy that I have gained over the many years that I have coached."