The guys on his team, however, felt he was deserving of some special recognition. Following a 50-0 rout of UT-Martin in their 2010 season opener at Neyland Stadium, players on the Tennessee football team gave Dooley the game ball.
“I think that just shows that we’re behind him 100 percent,” defensive end Chris Walker said. “I think he already knew that, but us giving him the game ball just solidified that. We wanted to show our appreciation to him.
“I think it’s a great time for any coach when they get their first win with a program.”
The Volunteers ushered in Dooley as the 22nd head coach in team history — and the third in as many seasons — by orchestrating the team’s first shutout since Tennessee blanked Vanderbilt 48-0 on Nov. 20, 2003.
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