In 2010, after the hiring of Derek Dooley, former letterman Andre Lott was hired for a new position of a new Character Education program inside the football program.
“When you think about it, this is one of the most important things to a program because it’s real-life issues,” Lott said. “You have to make the right decisions off the field. It’s about helping you deal with issues as far as setting up interviews, how you interview, how you dress, all those different things. What was so good is that I was able to take advantage of the opportunities I had when I was there at UT, and I took advantage of every opportunity knowing that I wasn’t going to play football forever.
What was largely regarded as a strike back at the Lane Kiffin debacle has turned out to be the hallmark of the Dooley era.
In 2011, Coach Dooley put this into context by saying it’s helped in the recruiting process:
adidas has at last put this on a shirt by popular demand.
Not to any real surprise, this shirt has already circulated around the student body, and is gaining popularity among both students and alums alike.
Outside looking in, this is a shining example of what football programs are supposed to do- educate young men into be upstanding individuals. Speaking as one, young men crave a sense of brotherhood and belonging that is vital to their development. With alumni that cares about the direction of the program and the development of the players, the Vols are headed down the path that other universities should follow- creating solid individuals.