Tennessee football has a history of elite special teams players. Here are the Volunteers top 10 kickoff and punt returners in school history.
General Neyland’s sixth game maxim says it all: Press the kicking game, for here’s where the breaks are made. Tennessee football has a deep history of great players in the kicking game to help them win.
In fact, the Vols are currently owners of the title Punter U with NFL stars Dustin and Britton Colquitt, Matt Darr and Michael Palardy. They have also had numerous very good kickers, most notably the clutch performer Jeff Hall in the 1990s.
But what about the return game? This is where Tennessee football really shines throughout history. The Vols have produced many great kick returners and some elite speedsters, which is why they also have one of the best track programs in the NCAA as well.
In this post, we’re going to go back in history and take a look at the elite returners the Vols have had over the years. From Neyland himself all the way through Butch Jones, Tennessee has been able to change numerous games thanks to special teams.
Many of these guys were stars at their own respective positions, but they doubled their elite status with their returning abilities. Others made a name for themselves specifically because of their return abilities despite limited production at their specific positions.
However, all of these players were incredible when they did play, and they are worthy of recognition. Every one of them is responsible for the Vols winning at least one game in their history. Some are responsible for more.
So let’s go ahead and shout out the great specialist to come through Rocky Top. And let’s relive some of their finest moments, which in turn were some fine moments for the Big Orange. These are the 10 greatest kickoff and punt returners in Tennessee football history.