Talk about a ripple effect. There’s nothing in sports quite like fan reactions when a beloved SEC school makes a drastic change to its football program. Just ask fans of the Tennessee Volunteers who just watched Phil Fulmer announce he’d be leaving the program at the end of the year.
Fulmer has been with Tennessee as either a player or coach since 1968. He was awarded the head coaching job in 1992. 40 years of service to one program gone, just like that.
Like I said, no one reacts quite like fans of an SEC school when things like this happen and boy, did the Tennessee fans ever react to Coach Fulmer’s resignation/firing/vacating his position at the end of year. Some fans are happy to see him go, while others are so happy, it seems like they are dancing on his grave. These latter types have drawn the ire of other Volunteer fans like the guys at LwS.
It looks like some Tennessee fans are getting their wish — it’s been announced Coach Fulmer will not be returning to coach the Volunteers next season. Fulmer will be paid the remainder of his $6 million salary. No word or speculation on who will be replacing the veteran coach who has one National Title, two SEC championships and a number of division titles to his credit.
A report in the Arizona Daily Star “confirms” Olson’s retirement, saying assistants Reggie Geary and Mike Dunlap informed the father of guard Abdul Gaddy Olson was indeed finished at Arizona. Dunlap is being reported as Olson’s interim replacement.
The athletic department, however, has not supported this confirmation.
ESPN is reporting Arizona Wildcats coach is stepping down from his position as head basketball coach. Evidently, Olson will be replaced by assistant Mike Dunlap on an interim basis. As of now, the University of Arizona is remaining mum on Olson’s departure and they are essentially denying the report:
Arizona spokesperson Tom Duddleston said Thursday morning that Olson hasn’t informed the administration that he is resigning. Duddleston said he went to his superiors and was told, “no way,” in response to the report.
“We’re not making any announcement to that effect,” Duddleston said. “At this moment there is nothing going on.”
If Olson is indeed done, his last few seasons at Arizona have been odd. Last season, he missed the whole year because of a sabbatical related to his marriage difficulties and his return has been less-than-smooth because of an alleged falling out with interim coach, Kevin O’Neill.
Olson won the National Championship in 1997 and has taken Arizona to the Final Four four times.