Tennessee Hires Clawson As New Off. Coordinator

Michigan's Rodriguez looking at NFL assistant for defensive coordinator position

Jan. 10, 2008

By Brian Curtis

Senior Editor, CSTV


Sources close to the Tennessee football program told CSTV.com that Dave Clawson accepted the offensive coordinator position with the Vols Thursday afternoon.


As CSTV.com first reported earlier in the week, Clawson, the head coach at FCS-affiliated Richmond, was among the leading candidates for the job after interviewing in Knoxville Monday. 


Clawson guided the Spiders to the FCS semifinals this past season where they lost to eventual national champion Appalachian State. He was named the 2002 I-AA Coach of the Year.




Clawson will replace David Cutcliffe, the former Ole Miss head coach, who left the Vols in Dec. 14 to take the head coach position at Duke.


"This was always a goal professionally and a dream of mine," Clawson said. "This is not the first phone call I've had for an opportunity like this, but this was the first one that excited me. I really believe Tennessee is one of the premier football programs in the country."


Clawson is credited with re-energizing the Richmond program. After going 3-8 in 2004, the Spiders went 9-4 and made the playoffs the following year. 


Tennessee officials planned to introduce the new coordinator on Saturday morning.


Clawson also will coach quarterbacks. He also spent five years coaching Fordham and was the offensive coordinator at Lehigh and Villanova, where he worked with Tennessee's new running backs coach Stan Drayton.


"His multiple offensive system using the talents of the players available to their fullest has been impressive," Tennessee coach Phil Fulmer said. "He has a great passion for recruiting, which is important for Tennessee, and his experience as a head coach will serve us well."


Also, sources said that new Michigan head coach Rich Rodriguez is interested in possibly hiring Jon Hoke as his defensive coordinator. Hoke currently is the defensive backs coach with the Houston Texans. He previously served as the defensive coordinator at Florida from 1999-2001, taking over for Bob Stoops.


The only remaining position left on Rodriguez's staff is defensive coordinator after he nearly completed his hiring Tuesday. Six former West Virginia assistants, and five members of the support staff, will be joining Rodriguez in Ann Arbor. Rodriguez is keeping only one assistant, running backs coach Fred Jackson, from previous coach Lloyd Carr's staff.


Information from the Associated Press contributed to this report.