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Book Excerpt: “Fast and Furious: Butch Jones and the Tennessee Volunteers’ Offense”

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Here’s a free look at the introductory chapter to Seth Price’s new book about Butch Jones and his offense: Fast and Furious: Butch Jones and the Tennessee Volunteers’ Offense.

You can buy the full book in paperback or for Kindle on


“It’s fast and furious. That’s our offense”
Alvin Kamara, Tennessee running back

Butch Jones is a winner. As the head coach at Central Michigan from 2007-2009, he improved his team’s record each year and won two conference titles. At Cincinnati from 2010-2012, he worked his magic again, winning two more conference championships.

Jones was then hired by the University of Tennessee, where he was tasked with changing the culture of the program. The Volunteers had been knocked from their standing among the elite in the college football world by the errors of their two previous head coaches. Lane Kiffin brought little more than controversy before leaving in the middle of the night after one short season to head to Southern California. He was replaced by Derek Dooley, who came to town with a losing record as a head coach and left as one of the worst head coaches in SEC football history.

Jones took over a sputtering program in America’s toughest conference and, just like he has done everywhere else, has simply won. The Volunteers have shown rapid improvement each year under Jones, going from 5-7 to 7-6 to 9-4 in three seasons. Tennessee finished off the 2015 season strong with an Outback Bowl victory and a top 25 ranking and carry that momentum into 2016 as one of the hottest teams in college football.

There are many reasons for Jones success. One of the more interesting factors is his offensive system. Jones’ background as an assistant coach comes almost entirely on the offensive side of the ball. He does not call the plays as a head coach; Jones has trusted Mike Bajakian and Mike DeBord with that task. Bajakian served as Jones’ offensive coordinator for his first eight years as a head coach, and DeBord took over when Bajakian departed for the NFL in 2015. Both men are close friends of Jones; both are coaches he has spent many years working alongside.

But make no mistake. Even though he doesn’t call plays, this is Jones’ offense.

Jones has refined his scheme over many years as a position coach, coordinator, and head coach, and he has developed it into one of the more effective systems in college football. The next few pages aim to dissect the concepts that Jones has built his scheme around and the philosophies behind them that have enabled his success.

Read more in the book and at Seth’s website,

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