Butch Jones: Vols, Virginia Tech 'making football history,' 'sports history' with game at Bristol

photos by MICHAEL PATRICK/news sentinel
Tennessee coach Butch Jones, right, and athletic director Dave Hart walk around Bristol Motor Speedway on Monday ahead of a celebratory press conference to announce the “Battle at Bristol” game between the Vols and Virginia Tech on Sept. 10, 2016.

Photo by Michael Patrick, Knoxville News Sentinel

photos by MICHAEL PATRICK/news sentinel Tennessee coach Butch Jones, right, and athletic director Dave Hart walk around Bristol Motor Speedway on Monday ahead of a celebratory press conference to announce the “Battle at Bristol” game between the Vols and Virginia Tech on Sept. 10, 2016.

BRISTOL — Three years from now, the black asphalt will have green turf and the empty grandstands will be packed with 150,000 fans in Tennessee orange and Virginia Tech maroon.

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Comments » 9

volbald writes:

UT Administrators lose nearly $16 Million on the deal by agreeing to the game a day late and millions of dollars short. What a surprise! Too bad, the difference could have paid Fulmer off and still made a handsome profit.

gc_scvol writes:

At least you have a positive attitude about this.

bUTch__please writes:

in response to gc_scvol:

At least you have a positive attitude about this.

+1.

It also looks like someone hasn't learned the difference between an offer and a contract.

Go Team 120!

johnlg00 writes:

in response to bUTch__please:

+1.

It also looks like someone hasn't learned the difference between an offer and a contract.

Go Team 120!

Actually, I think that original $20mil/team figure stated by Bruton Smith was just an outburst of irrational exuberance on his part. Kinda like Donald Trump throwing out imaginary numbers for his latest "UUUUUUGE" project. See my questions on the payout on the "Vols could get $4.3 million" article.

bUTch__please writes:

in response to johnlg00:

Actually, I think that original $20mil/team figure stated by Bruton Smith was just an outburst of irrational exuberance on his part. Kinda like Donald Trump throwing out imaginary numbers for his latest "UUUUUUGE" project. See my questions on the payout on the "Vols could get $4.3 million" article.

Yea, basically what I meant. Big giant trial balloon just to get the ball rolling.
Surprise! It worked.

fannotsheep writes:

Hope it becomes an annual game, although I admit the Vols don't need an even tougher schedule and this could eliminate the possible games with UCLA, Cal, Oregon, etc. But it's worth it for the exposure.

What I am getting a bit worried about is that UT may have a little Hitler or Napolean on its hands. Who does Dave Hart think he is? At first I dismissed things as just sour grapes by those resisting change. But there's just too much smoke over there -- the way he treats people, especially women, is disturbing. Now suddenly one of the true Vol legends is guilty of insubordination? Sousa embodies tradition for Big Orange fans. Watching the band right before the players rush onto the field at Neyland Stadium is one of the greatest moments in the entire game day experience.

I think it's time we stop, hey, what's that sound? Everybody look what's going down. Vol fans need to pay close attention to what's going down in the Athletic Department. We may lose a lot more than football games if we don't.

johnlg00 writes:

in response to fannotsheep:

Hope it becomes an annual game, although I admit the Vols don't need an even tougher schedule and this could eliminate the possible games with UCLA, Cal, Oregon, etc. But it's worth it for the exposure.

What I am getting a bit worried about is that UT may have a little Hitler or Napolean on its hands. Who does Dave Hart think he is? At first I dismissed things as just sour grapes by those resisting change. But there's just too much smoke over there -- the way he treats people, especially women, is disturbing. Now suddenly one of the true Vol legends is guilty of insubordination? Sousa embodies tradition for Big Orange fans. Watching the band right before the players rush onto the field at Neyland Stadium is one of the greatest moments in the entire game day experience.

I think it's time we stop, hey, what's that sound? Everybody look what's going down. Vol fans need to pay close attention to what's going down in the Athletic Department. We may lose a lot more than football games if we don't.

If you take every one of the arguments on each individual issue made by Hart and his supporters, they sound at least plausible if not definitive in light of what the general public knows at any given time. However, the fact that these issues keep coming up all the time lends some credence to the old adage about smoke and fire. In Hart's partial defense, there so many complex and cross-cutting influences in the college sports world outside the control of any individual institution that it would be really hard for anyone to make the correct adaptation every time. It may take a few more years before there is a sufficient body of evidence to fairly decide one way or another if Hart and staff--and superiors--have made more good decisions than bad ones.

fannotsheep writes:

in response to johnlg00:

If you take every one of the arguments on each individual issue made by Hart and his supporters, they sound at least plausible if not definitive in light of what the general public knows at any given time. However, the fact that these issues keep coming up all the time lends some credence to the old adage about smoke and fire. In Hart's partial defense, there so many complex and cross-cutting influences in the college sports world outside the control of any individual institution that it would be really hard for anyone to make the correct adaptation every time. It may take a few more years before there is a sufficient body of evidence to fairly decide one way or another if Hart and staff--and superiors--have made more good decisions than bad ones.

Just think someone needs to remind Mr. Hart that no one comes to the games because of him. Lots of people do, however, come to watch the game in person rather than on the big screen at home because of the atmosphere. The UT Pride of the Southland Marching Band has one hell of a big impact on the atmosphere.

johnlg00 writes:

in response to fannotsheep:

Just think someone needs to remind Mr. Hart that no one comes to the games because of him. Lots of people do, however, come to watch the game in person rather than on the big screen at home because of the atmosphere. The UT Pride of the Southland Marching Band has one hell of a big impact on the atmosphere.

Oh, I agree completely with this. In fact, I wrote a rather impassioned defense of the POTS band on the article that appeared elsewhere in the paper. But in this case as in others, it would appear that there is more than one side on this issue. For that matter, the entire Lady Vols program looked like a national leader across the board when the departments were separate but maybe not so much now. However, despite Hart's fancy new high-fallutin' title, he doesn't call all the shots. Perhaps his hand has been forced in some areas. I'm not a Hart defender as such, I'm just aware that I don't know all the constraints on his decision-making powers.

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