John Adams: All-Vols for the last 25 years

I turn 25 this month, but I don't look it.

In fact, the guy who signed on with the News Sentinel this month 25 years ago looks more like a distant relative to the fellow currently punching the keyboard under his name. Despite their differences, the two have teamed up to select their All-Vol football team for the last 25 years.

Some positions were picked in seconds. Others were so close, I might as well have flipped a coin.

Offense

Quarterback: Peyton Manning (1994-97).

Tough call, huh? He hasn't played for Tennessee since the 1998 Orange Bowl, yet his name is still listed 125 times in the record section of the UT media guide.

Running back: Chuck Webb (1989-90).

If a knee injury hadn't cut short his college career, UT would have a Heisman Trophy winner.

Fullback: William Howard (1984-87).

A powerful blocker, he was versatile enough to play tailback at 235 pounds.

Wide receiver: Carl Pickens (1989-91).

One of the best athletes to play for UT in the last quarter of a century, he led the team in receiving for two seasons and was the defensive MVP of the 1990 Cotton Bowl as a freshman safety.

Wide receiver: Peerless Price (1995-98).

Others rank ahead of him in career receiving yardage at UT. But Price's role on the unbeaten 1998 team — including four catches for 199 yards in the national championship game — was too great to overlook.

Tight end: Jason Witten (2000-02).

He had six catches for 125 yards as a sophomore against Michigan, but the skills that have make him an all-pro tight end with the Dallas Cowboys were under-utilized by the Vols.

Tackle: Arron Sears (2003-06).

The 2006 All-American started 37 games and played four different positions on the offensive line.

Tackle: Antone Davis (1987-90).

He won the Jacobs Award as the SEC's best blocker and made All-American in 1990. He and fellow tackle Charles McRae were both first-round draft picks the following year.

Guard: Harry Galbreath (1984-87).

It's often hard to notice offensive linemen in the heat of battle. But you noticed Galbreath, who was UT's most dominant offensive lineman of the last 25 years.

Guard: Cosey Coleman (1997-99).

He started 30 consecutive games and made All-American while helping clear the way for running backs Jamal Lewis and Travis Henry.

Center: Scott Wells (2000-03).

He was good enough to start four years and kept improving along the way — right into the NFL with the Green Bay Packers.

Placekicker: Jeff Hall (1995-98).

A four-year starter and All-SEC player, Hall is best remembered for his clutch field goals during UT's national championship season.

Defense

End: Shaun Ellis (1997-1999).

A first-team All-SEC pick in 1999, he has played 12 years in the NFL.

End: Leonard Little (1995-97).

Although he moved to linebacker as a senior, he continued to pressure opposing quarterbacks and made All-American in the process

Tackle: John Henderson (1999-2001)

He was a two-time All-American on defense and athletic enough to have helped the Vols as a tight end in a goal-line offense if they had been more creative.

Tackle: Darwin Walker (1997-99).

He was a two-time All-SEC player, an honors graduate in civil engineering, and played nine years in the NFL.

Linebacker: Al Wilson (1995-98).

He was the star and team leader on UT's 1998 national championship team before becoming a Pro Bowl linebacker with the Denver Broncos.

Linebacker: Keith DeLong (1985-88).

He made first-team All-American while toiling for a 5-6 team in 1988.

Linebacker: Raynoch Thompson (1997-99).

The three-year starter made All-American in 1999 and started every game of his 36-game career.

Cornerback: Terry McDaniel (1984-87).

A sprinter in track, McDaniel made All-SEC in 1987, but was still underrated as a college player based on the five Pro Bowls he made as an Oakland Raider.

Cornerback: Terry Fair (1994-97).

A four-year starter at cornerback, he made All-SEC in 1997 and also averaged 14 yards on punt returns for his last two seasons.

Safety: Dale Carter (1990-91).

The two-time All-American led the nation in kickoff returns with a 29.8 yard average in 1990.

Safety: Eric Berry (2007-09)

Another two-time All-American, Berry tied for the national lead in interceptions with seven and set a school and SEC record for interception return yards in a season (265).

Punter: Dustin Colquitt (2001-04).

UT's punter for four seasons, Colquitt made first-team All-SEC in 2003.

Kick Returner: Dale Carter (1990-91).

He handled the Vols kick and punt returns in 1990 and 1991.

John Adams is a senior columnist. He may be reached at 865-342-6284 or adamsj@knoxnews.com. Follow him at http://twitter.com/johnadamskns

© 2012 govolsxtra.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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Comments » 35

abnerPeabody writes:

Memoeies were made with these players. Guess how many of those were coached by Mr.Fulmer.I know, Fulmer is gone. Now it is Dooley time.Go Vols. Go Dooley.Make the bashers eat crow.Be our next HOF football coach.

aspenvol2 writes:

John, for our sake, let's hope you're gone in 25 days.

VolnTex writes:

in response to aspenvol2:

John, for our sake, let's hope you're gone in 25 days.

When you say things like that in response to an article like this one, you show that you're about as mature as a fourth grader and are putting Adams down just for the sake of putting him down. If you have something substantive to say about the article, say it.

DonK37920 writes:

Pickens is definitely one of the WRs but Peerless could easily be replaced by several others. That second WR spot is wide open. Webb was a beast and I would have also liked to have Garner for more time. His senior year he averaged 7.3 per carry and also was backed up by Stewart, Hayden and Graham.

echapin (staff) writes:

Congratulations on your silver anniversary, John!

Rumblefish writes:

in response to DonK37920:

Pickens is definitely one of the WRs but Peerless could easily be replaced by several others. That second WR spot is wide open. Webb was a beast and I would have also liked to have Garner for more time. His senior year he averaged 7.3 per carry and also was backed up by Stewart, Hayden and Graham.

Agreed. That WR spot could have 10+ names in there.

Bobsrazor writes:

Can't quibble much with the list except that it doesn't go back 60+ years to include some other greats such as Jack Reynolds, Herman Weaver, Reggie White, Doug Atkins, Bobby Majors, John Majors, Steve Kiner, Willie Gault and many many others. Some great boys grew into great men at the University of Tennessee.

cloudodust writes:

25 years ago, I was but a lad of 33. The play of Chuck Webb was one of the best pounders/slashers (sorry Johnny) in my memory as well. Wishing we could fieid a total team of not only their skill sets, but their guts. Good calls, JA...

volsreign writes:

Chuck Webb was indeed the best running back I have ever seen wearing orange. The Ole Miss and Cotton Bowl games were the two most impressive run games I have ever witnessed. If he had suffered that injury today he would have probably been back on the field as good as new in less than a year. So sad for us and for him.

TommyJack writes:

Good piece, Adams

Razor784 writes:

Agree with the list for the most part, I probably would have put Haynesworth at DT, and Joey Kent at one of the receiver spots. Chuck Webb was unbelievable, he looked so much like Barry Sanders when he ran, he was definitely the best RB i've ever ever seen at UT

10seVol85_Part_Deux writes:

So many WRs and RBs could be on the list, I'm guessing those are among the positions that took some time.

Henley-Street-Bridge writes:

I remember my 25th Vol Anniversary, that was 1984, 3 years before your stretch started John.

hillsborovol writes:

in response to Razor784:

Agree with the list for the most part, I probably would have put Haynesworth at DT, and Joey Kent at one of the receiver spots. Chuck Webb was unbelievable, he looked so much like Barry Sanders when he ran, he was definitely the best RB i've ever ever seen at UT

Haynesworth definitely should be there.

I would add Shawn Bryson as my fullback.

Fishpants writes:

Don't forget Head Coach Fulmer, OC Cutcliffe, DC Chavis

orangecountyvols writes:

Vols,

Inasmuch as I do not care a lot for Adams, and he knows it, I will give him credit for this article. It was pretty accurate actually. While there were many others who could have been mentioned, I don't have any problem with his selections.

Guys, wonder who would be on our all-troll list, even for just the past 5 years or so?
Usually, if something nice is said about Tennessee, they are compelled to do their little thing and try to find some fault.

Anyway, those players mentioned certainly do bring back great memories.

richvol writes:

Greg Amsler and Mose Phillips were both better fullbacks than Howard.

ClarksvilleVols42 writes:

good piece..though I'd have 3 wide outs and Joey Kent would be my selection

beartn#223846 writes:

I think I pretty much agree with this list. I would also leave Haynesworth off the list (he was too inconsistent - he took plays, and sometimes games, off when he wasn't motivated. I'm fine with Peerless Price, because he produced when it counted most. I would have considered Shawn Bryson for FB, but he was really a RB playing the fullback spot. Howard was a much better blocker, and could carry the bal, too.

BIVOLAR_BEARE writes:

I've got to say, that was a good article.Except that snip about Chuck Webb's Heisman chances. Heath Shuler if he comes back for a senior year and of course Peyton getting cheated out of the paper weight..GBO!

Witch_Doctors writes:

Witch Doctor say good stuff Adams..Witch Doctor say Happy 25th!
Bones never lie.

volinlm writes:

in response to echapin:

Congratulations on your silver anniversary, John!

Like him or not, you have to be doing something right to stay anywhere for 25 years. For that, I congratulate John.

SevenT writes:

in response to BIVOLAR_BEARE:

I've got to say, that was a good article.Except that snip about Chuck Webb's Heisman chances. Heath Shuler if he comes back for a senior year and of course Peyton getting cheated out of the paper weight..GBO!

Woodson was a the better player on a better team and he has the National Championship. The award is by vote not a UT public relations campaign.

Bigger_Al writes:

Congrats to Adams on 25 years of being the most loathed person in Knoxville.

Seriously, I was watching the Tyler Bray interview yesterday on utsports.com, and Adams' squeaky voice keeps popping up, basically and repeatedly asking Bray "did you not know how visible the UT QB position is or are you stupid"? Bray can't stand to look at him, but he keeps answering, "I just made bad choices."

BIVOLAR_BEARE writes:

in response to SevenT:

Woodson was a the better player on a better team and he has the National Championship. The award is by vote not a UT public relations campaign.

You're a tucky fan, opinion not worthy..UT would have shelled Michigan that year as would have Nebraska for that matter..Peyton was the best college fb player in the country and if ESPN hadn't conspired to back Woodson on every airing, the paper weight would have certainly made it's way to Knoxville..End of story.

tulelakevol writes:

I grew up reading Adams, I was 12 when he started at KNS, and I remember getting the daily paper, chunking the first few sections to get to the sports section so I could see what the Vols were doing. Good article John. Here's to 25 more years!!

BigOrangeJeff writes:

in response to Fishpants:

Don't forget Head Coach Fulmer, OC Cutcliffe, DC Chavis

If they went back a few more years, they could include Lavoisier Fisher.

orchidvol writes:

in response to SevenT:

Woodson was a the better player on a better team and he has the National Championship. The award is by vote not a UT public relations campaign.

You're obviously a negative attention junkie and I'm not giving in to you.

The media got caught up in a "a defensive player has never won it hype". The award became meaningless after that. Woodson didn't have an national championship either. That belongs to Nebraska. I know, I know, both teams finished undefeated but anyone who saw the teams play would know Nebraska would have destroyed Michigan. Tennessee would have beat them solidly as well for that matter.

SevenT writes:

in response to orchidvol:

You're obviously a negative attention junkie and I'm not giving in to you.

The media got caught up in a "a defensive player has never won it hype". The award became meaningless after that. Woodson didn't have an national championship either. That belongs to Nebraska. I know, I know, both teams finished undefeated but anyone who saw the teams play would know Nebraska would have destroyed Michigan. Tennessee would have beat them solidly as well for that matter.

Johnny Majors was snubbed by the Heisman folks too, how long will it take some to get over that one?

MidTennVol writes:

in response to SevenT:

Woodson was a the better player on a better team and he has the National Championship. The award is by vote not a UT public relations campaign.

Nonsense. That was the year the Heisman was exposed as a complete fraud -- a joke -- to everyone in college football. As much of a fraud as the Nobel peace prize...

SouthALVol writes:

I was physically in Gainesville when I read this article this morning. I fondly remember Dale Carter taking the second half kickoff 91 yards to kick start a 45-3 Gator spanking in '91.

SouthALVol writes:

in response to SouthALVol:

I was physically in Gainesville when I read this article this morning. I fondly remember Dale Carter taking the second half kickoff 91 yards to kick start a 45-3 Gator spanking in '91.

My memory isn't so good...it was '90.

BIVOLAR_BEARE writes:

in response to SevenT:

Johnny Majors was snubbed by the Heisman folks too, how long will it take some to get over that one?

You see, even a tucky fan knows how badly UT has been snubbed by the paper weight committee.

jcalhoun4 writes:

I love Dale Carter, but I'm not sure Deon Grant shouldn't have taken his place. That could've gone either way.

tovolny writes:

John, I did not realize that it has been over 25 years since Reggie White and Willie Gaut played for the Vols. Lets see, 2012-25=1987. Reggie White's last year as a Vol was 1983, I believe. Wow, am I get'n old or WHAT? Lots of people posting above did not notice the "last 25 years" limitation. But, I have now begin to expect you to keep kicking the Devils Powder Puffs. John, we know you are really a Vol fan. What about helping us out a little on the recruting trail. How about making the next 25 years your Pro UT years? You obviously love Knoxville, else you would have left around 1989.

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