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Insider Mailing: Offseason Buzz Edition

Photo Credit: Nick Davis/RTI

We answer your questions about the Vols or anything else in our weekly mailbag, Insider Mailing. If you have questions about anything in the mortgage process, go to

“Has Paul Bain earned a scholly yet; or has the scholly earned Paul Bain?” – @neylandmafia 

Daniel: Ha! The scholarship will earn Paul Bain when it earns it. But seriously, no, not that I’m aware of. I think he has a good chance to get one before he’s done at UT. The staff likes him a lot. He would’ve played more this year if he wasn’t banged up.

Nathanael: You think the walk-on is your ally? You merely adopted the walk-on. Bain was born as a walk-on, molded by it. He didn’t see a scholarship till he was already a man.

Yes I think he’s earned it.

“Latest buzz in Knoxville about possible assistant coach changes?” – Miles Hall 

Daniel: Nothing substantive at this point, but most are expecting a handful of changes on the staff. It doesn’t look like either coordinator will be straight forced out at this point. It will be interesting to see if there’s any shift in offensive coordinator Mike DeBord’s responsibilities with Don Mahoney’s contract wrapping up after the season.The O-line simply didn’t improve last year, and that must be addressed if this team is going to take the next step. I could see a scenario where DeBord is moved to O-line and another offensive coach is brought in.

I would also expect to see a change or two on the defensive side of the ball as well.

Nathanael: I’m with Daniel in the fact that I don’t see either coordinator being let go at this point. The only way either is gone is under their own volition (leaving for another job, retiring, etc.).

I know you don’t typically want to speculate on specific jobs on a staff, but I want to be as specific with you as possible. I do think Mahoney and Willie Martinez, Tennessee’s defensive backs coach, are let go in some way from this staff. I don’t think either of those coaches are bad coaches by any means; sometimes it’s just about fit on a staff. As for others, I’m not sure. I do think if there’s an opening on the offensive side, Butch Jones should use that as an opportunity to bring in a quarterbacks coach and shift responsibility around to accommodate that. There needs to a be a QBs coach with actual experience as such on this staff in 2017.

“Fan base even more fractured on Butch. How does a lame duck ’17 season he’s expected to win big (w/harder schedule) help?” – Mike Jehle 

Daniel: I hear you, but I think it’s be more harmful to have Dave Hart make a hire this offseason and then possibly have somebody who the new AD doesn’t work well with. Let the new AD come in and let him or her have a full season to make a judgement on Jones in what should be a win-or-else season for him in 2017 and then make the call.

Nathanael: It doesn’t, you’re right. This upcoming season is going to be a rough one in many respects. Unless Dormady or Guarantano is like Cam Newton and just leads the Vols to some improbable victories, I don’t see them being better than what they have been the last two seasons: 8-4. The excitement level for next season won’t be abominable, but it won’t be great either. But I do agree with Daniel that it’s just not ideal to fire him and make Dave Hart make a hire either. The whole situation is just unfortunate from many perspectives.

“What is your favorite color?” – Jon Tweet 

Daniel: Two-tone blue. The slimming effect of black and dark gray is underrated, however.

Nathanael: I knew as soon as I saw this question that Daniel would answer with what he did. Mine is plain and simple: black. Used to be navy/just blue in general, but I just like black.

“When and where can I buy my “champions of life ” championship memorabilia?” – L.T. Sewell 

Daniel: I don’t know if anybody has done this yet, but it’s actually a great idea. I don’t think there would be any UT licensing issues if you just used that phrase, so somebody should go get rich. “Back-to-back champions of life,” etc. could be follow-up ideas.

Nathanael: I actually have a friend who made her own Champions of Life shirts she’s selling to help raise money for her mother’s surgery. So if you’re interested in that, I can hook you or anyone else up with a link to it.

“What is the most overrated Christmas movie? Underrated?” – Travis Cabage 

Daniel: I’ve already taken heat on air, so I’ll take it online now – Christmas Vacation isn’t the all-time great that some make it out to be. Funny in parts, sure, but it’s not a must-see every year for me. Underrated: The Santa Clause and Love Actually.

Nathanael: I agree with Daniel about Christmas Vacation being a bit overrated, but it’s not the most overrated in my opinion. That title belongs to A Christmas Story. Is that movie funny? Yes. Is it quotable as all get out? Absolutely. But it plays for 24 straight hours on TBS every single Christmas. Once you’ve seen it 50 times, there’s no need to see it for the 51st time. I like it, but it’s not 24-hour marathon worthy in my opinion. My most underrated one goes to Nightmare Before Christmas. It’s personally one of my favorites, and I don’t feel like it gets enough love. It’s a great mix of Halloween and Christmas both, so I’m all for it.

Side note – I’ve never seen Love Actually and never plan to if I can help it.

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