Tennessee has a new tight ends coach, the Vols confirmed on Monday afternoon.
Larry Scott will replace tight end coach and special teams coordinator Mark Elder, who was named the head coach at Eastern Kentucky in December, but remained on with the Vols through Friday’s Outback Bowl. It’s unclear at the moment if Butch Jones will name one assistant as the special teams coordinator, or if those duties will be evenly distributed among the staff. The Vols already use a unit-by-unit approach to coaching special teams, giving different assistant coach different units to oversee.
Scott served as the interim head coach at the University of Miami following the firing of Al Golden midway through the 2015 season. Scott had a 4-2 overall record with a 4-1 mark in the ACC in his brief stint in Miami before the Hurricanes hired Mark Richt on a full-time basis following the season.
“We are very excited about welcoming Larry Scott, his wife, Shakiera, and their children (Larry, Jalen, Jurnee) into the Tennessee football family,” Butch Jones said on Monday afternoon. “Larry brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to our staff. He is a great teacher, motivator and recruiter, and most importantly, a great mentor for our student-athletes. I think the way Miami finished the season under his guidance speaks volumes to his leadership skills.”
A native of Sebring, Fla., Scott brings extensive Florida ties to a staff that has dabbled in the Sunshine State, but hasn’t found an abundance of impact players from that area. Vol legacy linebacker Dillon Bates is the only consensus four-star prospect this staff has signed out of Florida at UT. Jakob Johnson, Ray Raulerson, Tommy Townsend, Malik Brown, Lemond Johnson and Corey Vereen are the other Florida players who have signed under Jones at UT. Of that group, only Vereen has started a game at UT. Tennessee also has verbal commitments from Florida natives receiver Brandon Johnson and running back Carlin Fils-Aime in the 2016 class.
Scott served as the tight ends coach at Miami from 2013-15, before taking over the interim head coaching duties. Previously, he was at the University of South Florida from 2005-11 in various roles, including tight ends and offensive line coach.
Miami had among the best tight end production in the nation in 2014 under Scott with 52 receptions and 833 yards receiving from that group. Scott mentored Miami TE Clive Walford, who had a breakout 2014 campaign where he led the team in receptions with 44 before being drafted in the third round by the Oakland Raiders in the 2015 NFL Draft.
All of Tennessee’s returning production at tight end comes from rising junior Ethan Wolf, who had 23 catches for 301 yards and two touchdowns in 2015. Jakob Johnson and Neiko Creamer are the other two scholarship tight ends scheduled to be on the roster in 2016, joining walk-ons Will Jumper, Joe Stocstill and Eli Wolf (Ethan’s younger brother). Tennessee has commitments from tight ends Devante Brooks and Austin Pope as well.