KNOXVILLE - Tennessee receivers coach Charlie Baggett will not return to the Volunteers' staff next season.
According to sources within the football program, Baggett, who turns 59 in January, is "retiring" after two seasons at UT. The 11-year NFL coaching veteran has been a coach for more than 30 years after starting at Bowling Green in 1977.
UT has not officially confirmed Baggett's departure.
Baggett was making $400,000 in his second season, which was tied for the fourth highest salary of UT's assistants with defensive line coach Lance Thompson behind defensive coordinator Justin Wilcox ($700,000) offensive coordinator Jim Chaney ($525,000) and offensive line coach Harry Hiestand ($475,000).
Most of UT's coaching staff, including head coach Derek Dooley, has been on the road recruiting all week after last week's surprising season-ending loss to Kentucky that kept the Vols out of a bowl game. NCAA rules prohibit all 10 members of a coaching staff to be out recruiting at once, but Baggett had remained in Knoxville all this week.
Sophomore receiver Da'Rick Rogers went over 1,000 yards receiving this year despite UT's quarterback situation. Tyler Bray broke his thumb, missed five games and wasn't the same when he returned. While Bray was out, Matt Simms started twice, and freshman Justin Worley started three games.
Justin Hunter, Baggett's other sophomore protege, torn ligaments in his left knee early in the Vols' loss at Florida in September. Despite playing just two full games, Hunter was third on the team and second among receivers in receiving yards, behind only Rogers.
More details as they develop online and in Friday's Times Free Press. Follow Vols beat writer Patrick Brown on Twitter for continuous updates throughout the day.
Patrick Brown has been the University of Tennessee beat writer since January 2011. A native of Memphis, Brown graduated from UT in May of 2010 with a bachelor’s degree in Journalism/Electronic Media and worked at the Knoxville News Sentinel for two years on the sports editorial staff and as a freelance contributor. If it’s the NBA, the NFL or SEC football and basketball, he’s probably reading about it or watching it on TV. Contact him ...