Tennessee coaching search: Vols examining a trio of SEC defensive coordinators


The moves come just days after Fulmer was named the new athletic director amid Tennessee's disastrous search for a new coach.

Tucker is in his second season with the Bulldogs and now is helping prepare the team for its first appearance in the College Football Playoff.

The Southern Cal offensive coordinator, who led the Vols to the 1998 national title, helped the Trojans win the Pac-12 title this season.

Steele has had similar success with the Tigers and also is in his second season with Auburn.

Steele has the most head coaching experience of the trio, but his time atop the Baylor program long ago hardly evokes positive memories.

Sources tell FootballScoop Fulmer has met (or spoken with)...or has meetings set with Georgia defensive coordinator Mel Tucker, Auburn defensive coordinator Kevin Steele, Clemson defensive coordinator Brent Venables, SMU head coach Chad Morris and former LSU head coach Les Miles. The Crimson Tide, headed to the College Football Playoff for the fourth straight year, are ranked first nationally in scoring defense this season and second nationally in total defense. The latter two have already had two interviews with new Vols athletic director Phillip Fulmer, per ESPN's Chris Low.

Alabama defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt has emerged as a top candidate for the head coaching position at Tennessee, sources confirmed to Sports Illustrated's Bruce Feldman.

Auburn, which lost to Georgia in the SEC championship game, will face UCF in the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl that same day in a New Year's Six game.