Bruce Pearl named vice president for Knoxville distributor

Bruce Pearl named vice president for Knoxville distributor

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Bruce Pearl (source: Ackermann PR) Bruce Pearl (source: Ackermann PR)

KNOXVILLE (WATE) - Bruce Pearl has a new job in Knoxville, but it's not on a basketball court.

Knoxville-based wholesale distributor H.T. Hackney Co. announced Tuesday it has hired the former Tennessee men's head basketball coach as vice president of marketing. Pearl starts his new job on Sept. 1.

UT dismissed Pearl in March after he admitted to lying to NCAA investigators looking into allegations of recruiting violations.

Pearl took the job at Hackney after turning down a job offer from the Texas Legends, a NBA Development League team.

"I've known Bruce Pearl for years. His leadership, competitiveness and understanding of marketing is a great fit for our organization," said Chairman and CEO Bill Sansom.

Pearl says in a press release his decision came down to a handful of important factors.

"I worked for 33 years, my entire coaching career, to get to a place like Knoxville," he said. "This is where my family lives. This is home. We have made life-long friends here and we are very blessed to have this opportunity."

"Everybody knows me as a basketball coach, but I am a father and a husband. I've got to provide for my family," Pearl added. "I thought about staying in coaching for now. The Texas Legends was a good opportunity, but I'd have to move. There are some things that are more important than necessarily your career. This could challenge me down a new path."

During a press conference on August 25 Pearl said he will not appeal the NCAA's three-year show-cause penalty. He said he wanted to stay in Knoxville.

Pearl coached the Vols for six seasons. He has two children who graduated from the University of Tennessee and work in the Knoxville area. He also has two children still in high school.

His wife, Brandy, is a Sevier County native.

Pearl was a marketing and economics major at Boston College School of Management.

Forbes magazine says H.T. Hackney is the 82nd largest privately held company in the U.S. with annual revenues of about $4 billion. 

The company is involved in distribution including a potato chip company, a bottled water company, and a food commissary along with gas, oil and furniture manufacturing. 

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