Butch Jones says former coaches Dickey, Majors, Fulmer have been 'extremely supportive'

phillip-fulmer-hof.jpgKNOXVILLE, Tennessee -- New Tennessee coach Butch Jones said he's already spoken to three former coaches who were the face of Vols football for nearly three decades.

Jones said he spoke with Doug Dickey (1964-1969), Johnny Majors (1977-1992) and Phillip Fulmer (1992-2008) shortly after being hired.

"They've been extremely supportive," Jones said Sunday night on "The Nation" sports radio show. "We have such a great tradition here, and I want to embrace that. I want our players to understand what they're representing when they put that Power T on. That's going to be at the core of our program -- our tradition and how we build on that."

Jones has reached out to other influential UT figures since being hired. Tennessee athletic director Dave Hart said Jones took a list of names and numbers with him while he traveled the state recruiting last week, trying to use his downtime to make contact with trustees, boosters and other friends of the program.

Jones didn't say whether he had spoken to former coach Derek Dooley, who was let go in November, but it wouldn't be outside the realm of possibility that Jones or other candidates spoke to Dooley during the interview process.

Vols football coaches since 1964
1964-1969: Doug Dickey, 46-15-4
1970-1976: Bill Battle, 59-22-2
1976-1992: Johnny Majors, 116-62-8
1992-2008: Phillip Fulmer, 152-52
2009: Lane Kiffin, 7-6
2010-2012: Derek Dooley, 15-21
2012: Jim Chaney, 1-0

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