Note: This article is satirical in nature and was published for April Fools' Day.
The Tennessee Volunteers have found a new head coach, just weeks after ousting disgraced coach Bruce Pearl. According to ESPN insider Chris Broussard, Butler head coach Bradley Stevens accepted a multimillion dollar deal to coach the Tennessee Volunteers next season. Stevens is one of the hottest coaches on the NCAA scene, having reached his second Final Four in a row with the Butler Bulldogs, a program not traditionally known for its basketball strength.
Stevens’ remarkable success with the mid-major program left some wondering when he would make the move to a larger, more reputable program. Stevens, however, continually made statements regarding his desire to remain at Butler. “First and foremost, I’m loyal to Butler,” Stevens said last year. When asked if he would ever leave Butler, Stevens replied: “I guess if they kicked me out.”
Stevens attributed the financial security for his family as the main reason for accepting the position.
“Ultimately it came down to what was best for myself and my family,” said Steven in a Friday afternoon press conference. “This is the opportunity of a lifetime, to coach one of the most respected programs in Division I basketball, and I just couldn’t turn it down.” Broussard is reporting that the deal is for $15 million over the course of five years.
The deal came as a shock to many in the basketball community, as well as many of the players on the Butler squad. “He’s the best coach I’ve ever had, at any level,” said junior guard Shelvin Mack. “I hate that he’s leaving, but I guess he’s earned the opportunity. I have no hard feelings, I just wish he was sticking around.” Others on the Butler squad were less sympathetic. “It hurts. Here he is, telling us all these things about family and teamwork and then he says he’s leaving us, right before the Final Four?” said senior forward Matt Howard. ”That’s bullshit.”
Stevens said that accepting the Tennessee position will in no way impair his ability to coach the team in this weekend’s games. “My focus is entirely on the present. Tennessee is the farthest thing from my mind right now. All I’m worried about is figuring out how to get people on April Fool’s Day,” Stevens said.