University of Tennessee chancellor Beverly Davenport published a recommendation letter for John Currie following his settlement with the university on Thursday afternoon.
Davenport praised Currie as her “first hire,” adding that Currie met every qualification she was looking for in an athletic director.
“From the moment he accepted the job, John worked to build connections across our campus communities and worked to create a culture of transparency, fiscal responsibility, and passion for UT Athletics,” Davenport wrote. “He met all of the qualities I was looking for: a sitting athletics director at a Power-5 institution; someone committed to student success; and someone who was committed to winning the right way.”
Currie was still owed $5 million in his contract after he was suspended from his duties on December 1st of 2017, but he settled with the university for $2.5 million on Thursday afternoon. Davenport placed Currie on leave during his search for a head football coach, replacing him with current AD Phillip Fulmer.
Currie was put on leave after a botched coaching search left Tennessee high and dry without a head football coach three weeks after firing Butch Jones from the position. Fulmer hired Jeremy Pruitt and UT moved in a different direction.
“We wish John and his family well in their future endeavors,” Davenport added in her statement. “We are grateful for his contributions to the University of Tennessee which began more than two decades ago.”
In his time at Tennessee, Currie made two hires. Chris Woodruff was hired as the men’s tennis coach and Tony Vitello was hired to lead the baseball program. He fired Butch Jones but ultimately never got to hire his replacement. That fell to Fulmer.
We detailed Currie’s final days as UT’s AD in a piece earlier today.