Does Tennessee have the best athletics program in the nation?

Oct 16, 2021; Knoxville, Tennessee, USA; Fireworks burst as the National Anthem is played before a
Oct 16, 2021; Knoxville, Tennessee, USA; Fireworks burst as the National Anthem is played before a / Bryan Lynn-USA TODAY Sports

Tennessee athletics has been on a tear recently across multiple sports. With football on the rise, men's basketball advancing to the Elite Eight, and baseball and softball programs in the top five of their sport, Tennessee is doing pretty well in many sports right now. 

Since Danny White took over as athletic director at the University of Tennessee, we've seen an uptick in production and success in virtually every sport on campus. Football has taken a big jump in the right direction, baseball is a powerhouse, basketball is a yearly contender for the SEC Championship and Final Four, and multiple other sports, like men's golf and tennis, are emerging as national leaders. 

With all the recent success Tennessee has seen on the field and court, FanDuel proposed the question, does Tennessee have the best athletics program in the nation right now?

Since 2021, football has been 27-12, with an Orange Bowl and Citrus Bowl win and a feature as the No. 1 team in the nation in 2022. Men's basketball is 79-28, with an SEC Tournament and SEC Regular Season Championship and an appearance in the Elite Eight. Baseball is 191-58, with an SEC regular season title and two College World Series appearances. 

Softball is 174-53 with two SEC regular season titles, an SEC tournament championship, and a women's College World Series appearance in 2023. Women's basketball is 87-42 with an NCAA Tournament appearance in each season but hasn't won a conference title in that span. Rickea Jackson was drafted in the 2024 WNBA Draft at No. 4 overall from the Lady Vols basketball program. 

We've also seen the Vols bring home a National Championship in Men's Swimming and diving and men's Tennis, two titles in Men's Indoor and Outdoor Track and field, and two Division 1A Championships for Cheer. 

While we haven't seen a national championship in any of the "major" sports programs: baseball, softball, football, and men's and women's basketball, there is a noticeable difference in each program that points towards success. 

It's also a testament to the entire athletic department that Tennessee went from a football and women's basketball school to an everything school. Virtually every sport is known for competing for conference or national titles yearly, making Tennessee's athletics program the best in the nation.