University of Tennessee at Chattanooga quarterback B.J. Coleman was supportive of his former teammates Wednesday, a day after Lane Kiffin left the Tennessee Volunteers to become the coach at Southern Cal.
Mocs coach Russ Huesman, meanwhile, was highly critical of Kiffin during a one-on-one conversation with the Times Free Press.
“You want my honest reaction? I think it’s ridiculous,” Huesman said. “I think it’s a joke that the guy does that to the University of Tennessee. ... That’s my personal opinion and you can write any of that you want.
“I think he’s a complete idiot,” he said, later clarifying that he meant Kiffin was an idiot to leave the Vols after one season.
Coleman spent two years at Tennessee before transferring to UTC last spring. He met with the media following a team workout at the Lawson Center and said his heart went out to his former teammates — some of whom are still close friends — who are once again without a head coach.
“I haven’t talked to those guys yet, and I’m sure a lot of those guys are hurting, but they’re tough,” he said. “They’ll make it through.”
Huesman said he was watching “American Idol” with his daughter Emily on Tuesday when he found out about Kiffin’s departure. He said if Kiffin had left for an NFL job he “maybe” could understand that, but he doesn’t get leaving one historically elite program for another.
“He just up and takes the same job,” Huesman said. “And to be honest with you, I think Tennessee’s a better job.
“A lot of our fans are Tennessee fans, and I actually feel bad for them today. I really do. It aggravated me last night.”
John Frierson is in his seventh year at the Times Free Press and seventh year covering University of Tennessee at Chattanooga athletics. The bulk of his time is spent covering Mocs football, but he also writes about women’s basketball and the big-picture issues and news involving the athletic department. A native of Athens, Ga., John grew up a few hundred yards from the University of Georgia campus. Instead of becoming a Bulldog he attended Ole ...