There is no such thing as wasted time to Butch Jones.
The second-year University of Tennessee coach has placed a great emphasis on, and created real enthusiasm for the future with his first two recruiting efforts. His 2014 signing class was widely rated as one of the top five in the nation.
He makes the most of the present and rarely lets a moment go to waste. The tireless 46-year-old appears relentlessly throughout the state and region to spread his message of hard work and emphasis on the process.
Tuesday, for example, he was in Nashville to speak at a downtown luncheon hosted by the Nashville Sports Council. It was there that he spoke in depth about the past, which he considers an essential aspect of the program now and in the future.
“It's all about our former players; they're the ones that kind of built the program with their sweat equity,” Jones said, according to FoxSports.com. “It's all about them. They are the program.”
Former players have embraced Jones’ approach and even have been emboldened by it. Late last week at an appearance in the Chattanooga area, several voiced their support for him with a scathing assessment of his predecessors.
In recent weeks, other former players have traveled to Knoxville to reconnect with their personal history and help shape what is to come.
More from Jones:
“(Monday) was a great day because we welcomed Chad Clifton back; it's been a number of years since he's been in our building and he came in with his family,” Jones said. “It was good to be able to spend time with him. Earlier this summer Peyton Manning came back along with Eric Berry, Jason Witten and Albert Haynesworth.
“To be able to have these former players come back is great, and that's the power of Tennessee,” Jones said. “That's not only the great tradition we have, but also the affinity that our former players have for the Tennessee Vols and our football family.”
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