Phillip Fulmer’s final season as the Tennessee Vols‘ head coach was a disaster.

Fulmer was pushed out as the Vols’ head coach after a 5-7 season in 2008. The disappointing season came just a year after Tennessee won the SEC East division title (2007 was the last time the Vols won the SEC East).

The biggest reason Tennessee struggled in 2008 was due to Fulmer having to replace offensive coordinator David Cutcliffe, who left Rocky Top to become the head coach at Duke. Fulmer hired Dave Clawson, now the head coach at Wake Forest, to replace Cutcliffe.

It didn’t go well.

The “Clawfense” struggled to score points. The Vols averaged just 17.3 points per game in 2008, which ranked No. 111 in the nation.

A lot of folks, including myself, point to the 2008 season and Clawson’s offense as the reason the Tennessee football program has struggled to find consistency over the last 14 years. The 5-7 season in 2008 set off a wild course of events that led to the “Decade of Dysfunction” for the Vols.

On Tuesday, Fulmer was asked about Clawson during an appearance on “JMart and Ramon” on 104.5 The Zone in Nashville (JMart and Ramon is co-hosted by former Vols offensive lineman Ramon Foster, who played under Fulmer from 2004-2008).

“He’s (Clawson) gone on and done exceptionally well,” said Fulmer of Clawson. “Most of the time, we were so much on the same page and everyone working exactly together. There were some dynamics there that just didn’t work. And even now, I wonder how all those things happened. It was probably everybody, including me, that was responsible for that.”

“Another time, Ramon get off it, it’s over,” added a joking Fulmer.

Fulmer is a legendary Hall of Famer coach, while Clawson has found great success as the head coach at Wake Forest (he led the Demon Deacons to the ACC Championship game this past season). The truth is that Clawson just didn’t mesh well with Fulmer. The philosophies didn’t line up, and it resulted in a frustrating season for the program. It’s happened plenty of times before in college football.

Unfortunately for the Vols, the down season led to numerous frustrating seasons for Tennessee football.

Featured image via Knoxville News Sentinel-USA TODAY NETWORK