Jan. 17 (UPI) -- Hall of Fame football coach Phillip Fulmer is "a prime candidate" to replace Dave Hart as the University of Tennessee's athletic director.
"Since I was 18 years old, UT's best interests have always been my interest," Fulmer told ESPN.com. "I want what is best for UT. Dr. [Beverly] Davenport [UT's newly named chancellor] has laid out a clear process, and we have to respect the time and her vision to complete that process."
Fulmer, 66, was 152-52 in 17 years as the Volunteers' football coach. He led the school to its first national title in 1998. Hart announced his retirement in August, but is under contract until June. Fulmer was fired in 2008. David Blackburn and Jon Gilbert are also being considered for the opening.
"I have really enjoyed getting involved with Dr. [Joe] DiPietro on the President's Council and doing some things with him," Fulmer told the Tennessean. "They've got a process (in hiring an athletics director) in place and I'm just anxious to see what that process brings."