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#pounditFriday, March 5, 2021

Peyton Manning will reportedly have ‘big role’ in Tennessee coaching search

Peyton Manning

Tennessee is once again searching for a new head football coach after Jeremy Pruitt was fired on Monday, and the greatest player in the program’s history is expected to be involved in the process.

Peyton Manning will play a “big role” in Tennessee’s search for a new head coach, Bruce Feldman of The Athletic reports.

Pruitt was fired with cause amid a recruiting investigation, and it sounds like the penalties will be significant for Tennessee. The school hired its own legal team to look into allegations of recruiting violations, and Tennessee chancellor Donde Plowman said Monday that it is “stunning” how deep the issues run. Plowman said the NCAA is likely to find both Level II and Level I violations. A Level I violation is categorized as a “severe breach of conduct.”

The investigation will likely make it difficult for Tennessee to attract top head coaching candidates, which is where Manning could be a big help. He reportedly made a big pitch to a rival head coach on the Vols’ behalf in the past.

Manning threw for more than 11,000 yards, 89 touchdowns and 33 interceptions in four seasons at Tennessee. He was inducted into the Tennessee Athletics Hall of Fame in 2016 and College Football Hall of Fame in 2017.

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