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WATCH: Tennessee Receivers Have Thrilling Reaction to Kelsey Pope Hire

Calvin Ridley Suspended For Betting On The NFL

Kelsey Pope: Tennessee Promotes From Within To Fill Vacant Receiver’s Coach Position

The Tennessee Volunteers are promoting from within to fill the vacant wide receivers coaching position on Josh Heupel’s second-year staff.

Kelsey Pope, the new man in charge of Tennessee’s wide receiver unit, was on Heupel’s staff last year as an offensive analyst off the field. Learning under former Tennessee WR coach Kodi Burns, Pope will be able to continue the momentum that Burns left in place as a guy already familiar with the staff and the team.

The announcement came down officially on Monday afternoon through social media, but it doesn’t look like that’s when the team found on.

On Monday afternoon, the Tennessee Football Twitter account tweeted out a video of the Vols’ wide receivers reacting to the news. And there is no doubt about it, the guys seem to be fired up about and for Kelsey Pope.

“I know you guys have been waiting with anticipation, at the wide receiver position in particular, who we’re going to hire,” Heupel said in the video while addressing his players. “We want to make sure that we hire a great mentor, a great coach, and someone that’s going to build relationships with you. And at the end of the day help you be your best. With that, I want to introduce our wide receivers coach.”

“What’s up Vol Nation? Kelsey Pope here,” Pope said to close the video. “Your new wide receivers coach at the University of Tennessee. Excited about the opportunity. I’m excited about the vision and direction of the program. I want to thank coach Heupel. I want to think coach Danny White for this opportunity. I am excited to get started, ready to build up the momentum we had. Ready to add to Vol Nation. Go Vols!”

After taking an assistant coaching position with the NFL’s New Orleans Saints, former Tennessee receivers coach Kodi Burns was very excited for his friend Kelsey Pope.

“@CoachKelseyPope yessir!” Burns said on Twitter on Monday. “Proud of you bro! Them boys fixing to ball! Well deserved #GBO”

Nobody I know more deserving,” Tennessee WR Grant Frerking said about Pope on Twitter. “Happier for you than you’ll ever know @CoachKelseyPope. Let’s get to work!!”

Pope will have a great opportunity ahead of him. Heading into his first season as Tennessee’s wide receiver coach, Kelsey Pope will have a talented room of players that are bought into his coaching, prior experience in the system, and an offensive gameplan that changed the course of the SEC last year.

“Kelsey was a natural fit for this role and someone our players trust and have the utmost respect for,” Heupel said via UT Sports’ press release. “He has a clear understanding of what it takes for our wide receivers to be successful in this offense. He knows how to connect with people and cultivate relationships, and he’s going to be a tireless recruiter.”

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