Just a few things to start the day. Today’s agenda for Coach Jones is pretty simple. There’s a recruiting meeting at 9 a.m., and a luncheon with the Fellowship of Christian Athletes at 12:00 p.m. The afternoon will be unit meetings, followed by a few other staff meetings.
Coach Jones is looking forward to building on the success of the Vols overwhelming success in their championship 2016 season. I’ll take a few questions if you have ‘em.
REPORTER 1: What championship are you talking about?
MEDIUM ORANGE: Championship of life, mostly. Thought we were clear on that.
REPORTER 1: That’s not a championship.
MEDIUM ORANGE: Isn’t it?
REPORTER 1: It’s not. That’s not even a contest.
MEDIUM ORANGE: Well that’s your problem right there, man. You didn’t even know it was a game. Maybe that’s why you’re asking the questions and Coach Jones is answering them ‘stead of the other way around. Clock’s ticking. You gonna shoot?
REPORTER 1: What?
MEDIUM ORANGE: Man in the arena and all that, you know. You gotta celebrate the victory of living before you get anything else. Rosebuds gathered, man.
REPORTER 1: I’m lost.
MEDIUM ORANGE: Ain’t we all.
REPORTER 2: When Coach Jones said that he wants “four and five star hearts” last week, that meant—
MEDIUM ORANGE: I’m sorry, can I—
REPORTER 2: Sure, go ahead.
MEDIUM ORANGE: —y’all watch Fixer Upper? I just think sometimes, man, watching that show.
REPORTER 2: Yes?
MEDIUM ORANGE: I mean, it’s crazy, Chip...I just don’t see him and Joanna, right? Like, zero chemistry between the two. Maybe they’re mostly a platonic couple with a great professional kind of deal? I think the kids are fake. Plants. Just not theirs.
REPORTER 2: They’re actors?
MEDIUM ORANGE: We beat Florida. Nah, I just think they’re local kids. Borrowed kids. Can you borrow kids? I don’t have them, are they like take-a-penny leave-a-penny at the convenience store? I’ve heard a lot of people say they’re fake kids. Might be twenty playing eight or something. Waco probably has a lot of urchins. Clean ‘em up, slap some Baylor gear on ‘em. Should be cheap right now.
REPORTER 2: I was asking about Coach Jones’ comments on recruiting rankings and “five star hearts”
MEDIUM ORANGE: I get distracted! Yeah, I don’t recall him saying that.
REPORTER 3: He said it on February 2nd last week.
MEDIUM ORANGE: I’d dispute that? I mean no offense by that, I’m just not sure we’re all on the same page here.
REPORTER 2: No, I have it on tape right here.
MEDIUM ORANGE: There’s a lot of stuff out there, sure. But I’d wonder if you knew if you knew? If you went back and listened? Coach Jones is trying to give the people of Tennessee a winner, and I think he’s doing that. You gotta get less stuff in your life. If a piece of news doesn’t bring you joy, you gotta toss it out.
REPORTER 2: So you’re not going to explain what he meant by that comment? About wanting “Five star hearts?”
MEDIUM ORANGE: Konmari, bitch. Let me put it this way: I don’t even know what shiplap is, but I’m watching the show, right?
REPORTER 2: I’m sorry what?
MEDIUM ORANGE: Just saying you can eat a pizza without knowing the recipe. Pretty tasty, too. Mystery and hunger are just two sides of the same coin. I call that coin “a truth dime.” Try flipping that one around for a minute, and don’t spend it all in one place.
REPORTER 3: What about Georgia and Florida out-recruiting Tennessee, according to recruiting rankings? Does that worry Coach Jones?
MEDIUM ORANGE: We finished higher than they did, I think.
REPORTER 3: You were ranked below both.
MEDIUM ORANGE: Well I know I finished higher than they did, if you feel me.
REPORTER 3: Are you—
MEDIUM ORANGE: You know, let’s get into that. Because I know they recruited what, 16 and 15 four and five star recruits, right? And we have nine, according to the—
[/makes giant extremely sarcastic quotation marks with fingers and rolls eyes]
—rankings. Now, starlight takes a minute to get to you, right? And those stars here, there might be nine of them, but they’re all closer, right?
REPORTER 3: Yeah.
MEDIUM ORANGE: So you’ll see them brighter and closer sitting right here in Knoxville, is what I’m saying. Could be millions of years before you see those others. Put ‘em together. That’s a nice local constellation. You can’t be worrying about these other galaxies. I think that’s what Coach Jones would like you to focus on, and what most Vol fans think you should focus on.
Reporter 2: I don’t think you answered his question.
MEDIUM ORANGE: We beat Florida. I don’t think you got the astronomy lesson, but all I can do is put this sugar water out here in a dish. See if you hummingbirds wanna buzz on by for a free meal or two. I’m plating it up. Y’all take it or leave it, man. Buzz buzz.
Reporter 2: What?
MEDIUM ORANGE: [leaning into the mic and making fluttery motions with his hands like little flapping wings] bzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz
REPORTER 1: Does Coach Jones have any early thoughts on his job security?
MEDIUM ORANGE: It’s important to feel safe. You know what makes me feel safe? A big dog. I mean a horse of a dog. One that can really fog a room up if it eats some chili out of the garbage, right? A dog that leaves permanent dents in couches. A dog with organs too large to sell on the black market as human parts cause it’s just not even, like, believable? One of those.
REPORTER 1: I don’t—
MEDIUM ORANGE: I’m saying that Coach Jones feels like he’s got a big dog in the room with him wherever he goes, at all times. Just a big ol’ dog full of security. It’s loyal to him and him alone.
REPORTER 3: Is that how Coach Jones feels even if Phil Fulmer becomes athletic director?
MEDIUM ORANGE: You hear that last part about big dogs who can fog up a room?
REPORTER 2: I quit.
MEDIUM ORANGE. We beat Florida, have a great day.