Report: Pruitt Adds Another Member to Staff

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    Photo credit: Will Boling/RTI

    New Tennessee head coach Jeremy Pruitt has been adding more and more people to his support staff with the Vols. And according to a report, he’s made another addition and may still not be done filling out his staff.

    According to a report from John Brice of Gridiron Now, Pruitt has made a change at nutritionist. Pruitt has reportedly hired Alabama’s former nutritionist Rachel Pfister, and she’s reportedly been on the staff for a few weeks and is “already making an impact.”

    “Pfister is highly regarded in her field for both her work optimizing athletes’ meal options as well as her use of advanced methodologies for growing players,” Brice writes. “Pfister’s work on the ‘Bod Pod’ has been featured nationally, as has her work with Alabama’s nation’s-best collegiate gymnastics squad.”

    Pfister will be the third nutritionist in the last three seasons for Tennessee. Butch Jones parted ways with Allison Maurer before the start of the 2016 season, and Pruitt elected to move on from Stephanie Horvath, Jones’ hire to replace Maurer.

    A team’s strength and conditioning staff doesn’t grab the headlines that the head coach and coordinators do, but they’re just as important in developing players. Pruitt has stated before that he wants this team to be bigger and stronger than they have been over the last few years, and he’s doing everything he can to make that possible. The hiring of Pfister and strength and conditioning coordinator Craig Fitzgerald are both viewed as solid moves in the right direction.

    But as good as those hires may be, they only add to the turbulence at those position.

    Fitzgerald will be Tennessee’s fourth different strength and conditioning coordinator in the last three seasons, and Pfister will be the third nutritionist in the last three seasons. But Pruitt is hoping his hires add some stability to that part of the staff.

    But Pfister isn’t Pruitt’s last addition per Brice’s report. He also expects Pruitt to hire John Lilly, a former Georgia assistant with NFL ties, to be an “assistant to the head coach from a football standpoint.”

    We will update as more news becomes available.



    Nathanael Rutherford is the managing editor and social media manager for Rocky Top Insider. Nathanael graduated from the University of Tennessee and cultivated a passion for the Vols while growing up in Knoxville a mere 10 minutes from Neyland Stadium. He's been a part of the RTI team since November of 2015 and has been the editor of RTI since June of 2017. If he's not talking or writing about Tennessee athletics, he's probably talking about Star Wars.