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University of Tennessee at Chattanooga’s head coach, Rusty Wright, prepares his Mocs team for their Spring season of college football. Due to COVID-19, the Mocs could only play one game during their Fall football season, so to make up for lost playing time UTC decided to take full advantage of a safer Spring season. Saturday, January 23, 2021. (Photo by Logan Stapleton)

Photo by Logan Stapleton

By William McElyea, Staff Writer-

UTC’S football program will not look to fill the vacant assistant coaching job until after the spring season. Instead, the Mocs have elected to go with the “coach by committee” approach to fill the offensive line coaching job. 

“We felt it would be unfair to the guys to bring in someone unfamiliar with our system so close to the season.” Coach Rusty Wright said during a press conference Wednesday afternoon; “We will work together throughout the season to fill the position.”

The position was left open by the firing of Chris Malone. Malone was fired after an “inappropriate” tweet was brought to the Universities attention according to a statement made by Mark Wharton, Vice Chancellor & Director of Athletics at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, on January seventh.

When asked how the overall attitude of the team was after Malone’s termination, Coach Wright said “I think it’s pretty good. Luckily, we have several older guys with a lot of experience on the line that can take some of the younger guys under their wing. We are fortunate in that area.”.

The Mocs return one of the more experienced offensive lines in the Southern conference, bringing back four of their five starters from last season, led by two-time All-Southern Conference pick Cole Strange.

 Senior Harrison Moon joins returning Freshman All-American Colin Truett at the tackle position and junior McClendon will team up with Strange at guard. 

UTC also has both starting centers from the last two seasons returning in seniors Noah Ramsey and Kyle Miskelly. In all, they return four senior linemen along with one junior and three sophomores while adding nine freshmen to the mix. UTC kicks off its all-conference schedule Saturday, February 20th, at Finley Stadium against Virginia Military Institute.

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