As the Tennessee Volunteers arrive back home from Omaha, their athletic department is reportedly working to make sure Tony Vitello stays in Knoxville.
Despite only going 0-2 in the 2021 College World Series, the Tennessee Volunteers are wrapping up an incredibly successful season. The Vols were consistently one of the best college baseball teams in the country and it wasn’t shocking at all to see them make it to Omaha.
Now the Vols must find a way to keep the man who worked to turn the Tennessee baseball program around in Knoxville.
Tony Vitello has built the Tennessee Vols into a very formidable program. He’s only been in Knoxville for four years (three full seasons), but they’re already looking and playing like one of the best programs in the Southeastern Conference.
In 2018, Vitello’s first season leading the Vols, Tennessee managed to go 29-27. They improved to 40-21 in 2019 and got off to a great 15-2 start in 2020 before COVID-19 shortened the season. In 2021, Tennessee went 50-18, was the No. 3 national seed, won a Regional, Super Regional, and competed in the College World Series.
That’s a very quick rise for Vitello and the Vols. Unsurprisingly, because of all of that success, many in Baton Rouge want Vitello to come lead the LSU Tigers.
Tennessee is reportedly ready to make Tony Vitello the highest-paid college baseball coach
But, if a report from Jayson Swain is correct, the Vols are prepared to throw a ton of money in Vitello’s direction.
According to a tweet from Swain, sources have informed him that the Vols are ” prepared to make Tony Vitello the highest paid college baseball coach in the country.”
While that may not be everything Vitello would want in order for him to stay in Knoxville, it would probably go a long way in persuading him to continue building this program.
Tennessee still lags behind the traditional college baseball powers in the SEC when it comes to its baseball stadium, but Vitello is proving that the Vols are a sleeping giant. There’s a lot of money floating around with Tennessee’s boosters and fans, and a lot of things might change very quickly.
The success he’s had in Knoxville should be commended and rewarded. It looks like Tennessee is ready to do that.