“The outcomes over Josh’s first two seasons converse for themselves,” White mentioned. “He and his workers have energized each our soccer program and our fanbase with an aggressive model of soccer, a aggressive tradition that creates leaders and a relentless method to elevating the bar each single day. Despite a short interval of dormancy, Tennessee by no means surrendered its standing as a university soccer powerhouse. We simply wanted an revolutionary chief like Josh Heupel to reignite the spark. It’s been enjoyable to crash the celebration, however as Josh mentioned after our Orange Bowl triumph, one of the best is but to return.”
In two seasons, Heupel’s exceptional revival of the Volunteers has seen him produce an 18-8 total document, seven victories over Top 25 groups on the time of the assembly, this system’s first New Year’s Six berth within the College Football Playoff period and a No. 6 remaining rankings. The seven ranked wins are third nationally amongst FBS head coaches throughout that span. UT was 3-7 a season previous to Heupel’s arrival.
“I’m grateful to President Boyd, Chancellor Plowman, Danny White and of Vol Nation for his or her great assist,” Heupel mentioned. “Our workers takes nice pleasure in representing the Power T, and it is one thing we by no means take with no consideration. We will proceed to work tirelessly to construct a championship program that every one of Vol Nation and all VFLs may be pleased with.
“Most importantly, our gamers are the individuals who deserve all the credit score for our resurgence on Rocky Top. Over the final two years, they believed in us and poured their power into each single day with onerous work, management, cohesiveness and constant habits . I’m proud to be their coach.”
In each seasons below Heupel, Tennessee has surpassed its SEC preseason projected order of end. Heupel’s Vols entered the 2022 marketing campaign unranked however ascended to No. 1 within the preliminary College Football Playoff rankings after a fast 8-0 begin, giving UT its first prime ballot place because the 1998 nationwide championship season. Heupel joined College Football Hall of Famers Phillip Fulmer (1998), General Robert Neyland (1939, ’51) and Bowden Wyatt (1956) to steer a Tennessee workforce to a No. 1 rating.
Heupel grew to become the primary Vol coach in 21 years to defeat Alabama, Florida and LSU in the identical season as Neyland Stadium grew to become the epicenter of the game with a number of ESPN College GameDay appearances and 6 consecutive sellouts. UT secured its first-ever New Year’s Six bowl berth and defeated ACC champion Clemson, 31-14, to assert its first Orange Bowl trophy since 1939.
The Vols concluded the yr No. 6 in each the Associated Press and USA Today AFCA Coaches polls, representing their highest end since 2001. Tennessee defeated 4 foes within the remaining AP Top 25, which was the second-highest whole amongst groups within the remaining ballot. The workforce completed with six wins over ranked groups, tying the 1998 squad for probably the most in program historical past.
For his efforts, Heupel was tabbed the 2022 AP SEC Coach of the Year and a finalist for the Paul “Bear” Bryant Coach of the Year Award and the George Munger Award introduced by the Maxwell Football Club. Heupel was the recipient of the AFCA’s Region 2 Coach of the Year, and he captured the fan vote for the Bryant Coach of the Year Award.
Heupel’s groups have established a transparent id because the nation’s No. 1 offense with an attacking protection. In 2022, the Vols led the nation in scoring offense (46.1), whole offense (525.5), passing effectivity (181.4) and whole touchdowns (79) for the primary time in class historical past. That occurred after UT was the nation’s most improved offense when it completed prime 10 in all 4 of these classes in Heupel’s first yr.
The Vols completed prime 15 nationally in whole tackles for loss and tackles for loss per recreation in every of the previous two seasons, together with tops within the SEC in 2022 (7.2).
A yr after breaking eight workforce single-season data, Tennessee shattered 15 program marks in the course of the 2022 marketing campaign. Heupel’s offensive unit rewrote the annals in whole factors (599), factors per recreation, whole offense (6,832), whole offense per recreation, yards per play (7.2), whole touchdowns, passing touchdowns (38), dashing touchdowns (40), completion proportion (68.7), passing effectivity, passing yards (4,239), fewest interceptions thrown (3) and first downs (330).
The Vols’ rise to nationwide prominence below Heupel’s management has enabled UT to signal back-to-back elite recruiting lessons. His top-10 Class of 2023 options three of the highest 50 signees within the nation in response to On3.com, together with the nation’s No. 1 participant at quarterback Nico Iamaleava of Long Beach, California.
Player improvement has been evident as properly within the Heupel period. Five Vols have been chosen within the 2022 NFL Draft, representing this system’s most since 2017 and greater than UT produced the earlier three drafts mixed. The Vols are poised so as to add to that quantity this spring.
Four Tennessee gamers earned first-team All-SEC recognition from the league’s coaches within the fall of 2022—large receiver Jalin Hyattquarterback Hendon Hookeroffensive deal with Darnell Wright and defensive finish Byron Young. The 4 alternatives have been probably the most for this system since 2006.
Heupel mentored Hooker, who swept the SEC Offensive Player of the Year awards as chosen by the coaches and the Associated Press, after an indelible season. Hooker secured the best Heisman Trophy end by a Vol in 25 years with fifth place. Meanwhile, Hyatt grew to become the primary participant in class historical past to assert the Biletnikoff Award because the nation’s prime receiver. He earned the celebrated honor of turning into the thirteenth unanimous first-team All-American in UT historical past and the primary since College Football Hall of Famer Eric Berry in 2009.
Off the sphere, the Vols have flourished below Heupel with 34 SEC Academic Honor Roll alternatives within the fall of 2021 and three Academic All-America accolades within the final two seasons mixed. In 2021, Tennessee produced a number of College Sports Communicators (CSC) Academic All-Americans in the identical season for the primary time as Paxton Brooks and Matthew Butler acquired first- and second-team distinctions, respectively. Brooks repeated the dignity in 2022.
The Vols’ on-field success additionally correlated within the classroom, because the soccer program’s 2022 fall semester GPA was its highest on document, with 13 Dean’s List student-athletes main the best way.
Heupel emphasised the holistic improvement of the student-athlete and enhanced the workforce’s participant improvement workers. The group focuses on year-round programming geared in direction of making ready the Vols for private, educational and management success, in addition to neighborhood engagement efforts.
The Aberdeen, South Dakota, native owns a stellar 46-16 total document (.742) and a 30-11 (.732) convention mark in 5 seasons as a head coach. His 46 victories since 2018 are prime eight nationally, and he’s considered one of solely 4 lively FBS head coaches to steer a number of packages to New Year’s Six Bowl appearances within the CFP period. His groups have earned bowl berths and completed within the prime 10 nationally in scoring and whole offense in all 5 seasons.
Heupel’s extension phrases embody annual compensation of $9 million, plus incentives.