With the news coming out that safeties coach and special teams coordinator Charles Kelly is joining Alabama’s staff, Tennessee could finally officially announce the hiring of former Vol quarterback and former USC offensive coordinator Tee Martin on staff.
Tennessee officially announced Martin’s addition to Jeremy Pruitt’s staff at Tennessee on Saturday afternoon just before the men’s basketball team tipped-off against Alabama. Martin’s specific title and duties will be announced at a later date, but Martin is officially on UT’s staff now.
“I’m excited to welcome back Tee Martin as one of our assistant coaches,” Jeremy Pruitt said via a release. “He coordinated some of the nation’s top offenses at USC, and he develops and identifies players as well as any coach in the country. He’s an excellent recruiter, and he is terrific at building relationships with his players. He cares about developing young men on and off the field. Tee was the quarterback on one of the greatest teams in school history, winning a national championship. He knows what it take to win here, and I’m excited to have him on our staff.”
Martin was the Vols’ starting quarterback during their undefeated National Championship season in 1998, throwing for 2,164 yards, 19 touchdowns, and six interceptions on the season. Martin started for the Vols in 1999 as well, and he earned a 22-3 record as UT’s starting quarterback.
As a coach, Martin has made multiple stops. He got his start coaching high school in the Atlanta area, then he was hired on as New Mexico’s wide receivers coach in 2009. He left that position after one season and was hired as Kentucky’s receivers coach in 2010. He added the passing game coordinator title in 2011 and coached there for two seasons before heading to the west coast to join USC’s staff.
Martin coached at USC for seven seasons. He was their receivers coach from 2012-13, added the passing game coordinator title in 2014 along with his receivers coaching duties, and then was promoted to offensive coordinator in 2016.
After the 2018 season, Martin was let go as USC head coach Clay Helton made wholesale changes to his coaching staff.
Martin was named the 247Sports National Recruiter of the Year in 2016 and was named the Recruiter of the Year by the Pac-12 in 2014. He was also a semifinalist for the Broyles Award in 2017.
“It’s the perfect time to come back home,” Martin said via a release. “With Coach Fulmer’s support, Coach Pruitt is taking the Tennessee program in the right direction, and I’m excited to be a member of this outstanding coaching staff. I truly love this university and I bleed Orange and White. My time here was the greatest four years I could’ve ever imagined on and off the field. It’s my goal to help our Tennessee football student-athletes have the same experiences I had when I was a student here. It’s great to be home.”
Tennessee Athletics Director Phillip Fulmer was Martin’s head coach during his four-year playing career at UT from 1996-99.
Martin has already been on the recruiting trail for the Vols the last few days, and no official press conference is expected to announce his hire.
UPDATE: Tee Martin was introduced during No. 3 Tennessee’s game against Alabama on Saturday afternoon. Here’s video of Martin’s introduction:
— Tennessee Football (@Vol_Football) January 19, 2019
Here’s our video of both Jim Chaney and Tee Martin being introduced:
Jim Chaney gets welcomed as the Vols’ new OC.
Then, Tee Martin is welcomed home. pic.twitter.com/4fUQlU8V58
— Rocky Top Insider (@rockytopinsider) January 19, 2019