University of Tennesseec
From a GREAT site on Tennessee Football - www.thevib.com
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NEYLAND STADIUM, SHIELDS-WATKINS FIELD
How the House was Built
1921 Student Field Day
The present day Neyland Stadium, Shields-Watkins Field had its beginning in 1919. Col W.S. Shields, president of Knoxville's City National Bank and a UT trustee, provided the initial capital to prepare and equip an athletic field. Thus, when the field was completed in March of 1921, it was called Shields-Watkins Field in honor of the donor and his wife, Alice Watkins-Shields.
The stadium, apart from the field it grew to enclose, came to bear its own distinguished name - Neyland Stadium. It was named for the man most responsible for the growth and development of Tennessee football - Gen. Robert R. Neyland, who served as head coach from 1926 to 1952, with two interruptions for military service.
After retiring from the coaching ranks, Neyland was athletic director until his death in 1962. He was the guiding force behind additions to the stadium's capacity and is the one most responsible for the winning tradition that Volunteer fans have come to expect over the years. The latest addition to the facility is the Neyland Stadium Press Box and Executive Suites, officially opened Sept. 5, 1987. Located atop the West Upper Deck at Neyland Stadium, it replaces one built in 1962.
First game: Sept. 24, 1921 - Tennessee 27, Emory & Henry 0. Dedication game as Neyland Stadium: Oct. 20, 1962 - Alabama 27, Tennessee 7. First game on artificial turf: Sept. 14, 1968 - Tennessee 17, Georgia 17. Final game played on artificial turf: Nov. 27, 1993 - Tennessee 62, Vanderbilt 14. First night game at Neyland Stadium: Sept. 16, 1972 - Tennessee 28, Penn State 21. Record Attendance: Sept. 16, 2000 - Tennessee Vs. Florida. 108,768.
Capacity: 104,079 - 2nd largest football stadium in the country. Has undergone 15 additions/renovations since West stands were built in 1921, seating 3,200. Latest additions (North stands) added 10,499 seats in 1980. Press Box/Executive Suites were renovated in 1987. North Upper Deck in 1996 added 10,583 seats. The New Luxury suites added approxiately 1,200 seats in 2000.
Attendance: Since attendance records were first kept beginning in the 1950 season, more than 22.2 million fans have watched Big Orange football at Neyland Stadium. Average attendance has been on a climb since 1950, when an average of 24,910 saw eight home contests.
Tennessee success at
Shields-Watkins Field: In 79 seasons, the Vols are
383-89-17, a winning percentage of .801.
Consecutive home games without a loss: 55, beginning in September 25, 1926 with a 13-0 victory over Carson-Newman, and ending October 21, 1933 with a 12-6 loss to Alabama.
Consecutive home wins: 30, beginning December 8, 1928 with a 13-12 win over Florida and ending October 21, 1933 with a 12-6 loss to Alabama.
Consecutive home losses: 4, beginning November 13, 1954 with a 14-0 loss to Florida and ending October 8, 1955 with a 13-0 win over Chattanooga; beginning Sept. 10, 1988 with a 31-26 loss to Duke and ending with a 10-7 win over Boston College.
Winning seasons: Tennessee has had 70 winning seasons in 79 years at Shields-Watkins Field, including 34 undefeated years at home. The last team to go undefeated at home was the 1998 squad, which was 6-0 at Neyland Stadium.
History of the "VOLS" Sign in Neyland Stadium!
The original "VOLS" sign was erected in the summer of 1966 atop the south endzone, the same season the new north bleachers were installed. This photo is from the 1966 Kentucky game.
This version of the sign remained intact from 1966 through the 1975 season, even though the southwest upper deck had been completed for the 1972 season. This photo was taken in 1974, from behind the north endzone bleachers. Notice the southwest upper deck in the far right.
This was taken from the press box in '75 for another view. It looked like this from '72-'75.
When the south east upper deck was completed for the 1976 season, a new sign was placed atop the newly completed, south upper deck. The new "VOLS" sign would be orange with white lettering. The stadium was a double-decked horseshoe from '76-'79.
This version would remain unchanged for 22 seasons, until a new sign was made with the construction of a "Jumbo Tron" for the 1999 season. The new addition features the old white background, with orange lettering, outlined in black.