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1951 Tennessee Volunteers football
National Champions
SEC Co-Champions
Sugar Bowl, L 28–13 vs. Maryland
ConferenceSoutheastern Conference
Ranking
CoachesNo. 1
APNo. 1
1951 record10–1 (5–0 SEC)
Head coachRobert Neyland
Offensive schemeSingle-wing
Base defenseMultiple
Home stadiumShields-Watkins Field
Seasons
← 1950
1952 →
1951 SEC football standings
v · d · e Conf     Overall
Team W   L   T     W   L   T
#5 Georgia Tech § 7 0 0     11 0 1
#1 Tennessee § 5 0 0     10 1 0
LSU 4 2 1     7 3 1
Ole Miss 4 2 1     6 3 1
#15 Kentucky 3 3 0     8 4 0
Auburn 3 4 0     5 5 0
Vanderbilt 3 5 0     6 5 0
Alabama 3 5 0     5 6 0
Florida 2 4 0     5 5 0
Georgia 2 4 0     5 5 0
Mississippi State 2 5 0     4 5 0
Tulane 1 5 0     4 6 0
† – Conference champion
Rankings from AP Poll

The 1951 Tennessee Volunteers football team represented the University of Tennessee in the 1951 college football season. In his next to last season as head coach, Robert Neyland led Tennessee to their second consecutive national title and the fourth during his tenure. 1951 was also Neyland's ninth undefeated regular season in his career. The 1950 Tennessee team had gone 11–1, winning its last nine games and capping the season off with a victory over Texas in the Cotton Bowl. In 1951, The Vols put together a 10–0 regular season and were voted national champs by the AP Poll before the bowl season began, as was the convention at the time. The game against Alabama on the Third Saturday in October that season was the first ever nationally televised game for both teams. The Vols were a dominant team in the regular season, winning their first nine games by a combined score of 338 to 61 before thwarting a spirited effort by in-state rival Vanderbilt in the last game of the regular season, 35–27.

Prominent playersEdit

The 1951 Tennessee Volunteers featured Hank Lauricella, that season's Heisman Trophy runner up, and Doug Atkins, a future member of both the College Football Hall of Fame and the Pro Football Hall of Fame. James Haslam Jr., a future business and civic leader in Knoxville, was a captain on the 1952 team, and a prominent member of the 1951 squad. The team featured six all-conference players: Lauricella, Atkins, Ted Daffer, John Michaels, Bill Pearman, and Bert Rechichar. Laricella, Daffer, and Pearman were also named All-Americans following the year.

ScheduleEdit

Date Opponent# Rank# Site TV Result Attendance
September 29 Mississippi State #1 Shields-Watkins FieldKnoxville, TN W 14–0    
October 6* #16 Duke #3 Shields-Watkins Field • Knoxville, TN W 26–0    
October 13* Chattanooga #3 Shields-Watkins Field • Knoxville, TN W 42–13    
October 20 at Alabama #2 Legion FieldBirmingham, AL (Third Saturday in October) CBS W 27–13    
October 27* Tennessee Tech #1 Shields-Watkins Field • Knoxville, TN W 68–0    
November 3* at North Carolina #1 Kenan Memorial StadiumChapel Hill, NC W 27–0    
November 10* Washington & Lee #1 Shields-Watkins Field • Knoxville, TN W 60–14    
November 17 at Ole Miss #2 Hemingway StadiumOxford, MS W 46–21    
November 24 at #9 Kentucky #1 McLean StadiumLexington, KY (Battle for the Barrel) W 28–0    
December 1† Vanderbilt #1 Shields-Watkins Field • Knoxville, TN W 35–27    
January 1, 1952* vs. #3 Maryland #1 Tulane StadiumNew Orleans, LA (Sugar Bowl) L 13–28    
*Non-Conference Game. Homecoming. #Rankings from AP Poll.

ReferencesEdit

  1. 2011 Tennessee Football Record Book. Knoxville, Tennessee: University of Tennessee Athletics Media Relations Office. 2011. p. 122.
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