Tennessee Football: 10 Ways You Know You're a Vol Fan
Have you ever heard Jeff Foxworthy's hilarious "You Might Be a Redneck..." bit?
Well there's an equally comedic and eerily correct bit that could be done for the fans of the Tennessee Volunteers! I've 10 right here.
I encourage you to add any other ways you know you're a fan of the Vols in the comments below. Try to have some fun because we're still five months away from kicking off the 2012 season.
(P.S. Some of Foxworthy's jokes might work perfectly for Vol fans, too. Be proud!)
You Stopped Watching the Heisman After Charles Woodson Won
Peyton Manning's senior season in 1997 was one for the ages.
He threw for over 3,800 yards and 37 touchdowns. He led the team to an 11-2 record, including an SEC championship in a thrilling game over Auburn.
There was a kid from Michigan that had one hell of a season that year, too. Charles Woodson, a primarily defensive player, set the college football world on fire with three offensive touchdowns and one kick-return touchdown in addition to his defensive stats.
Those stats were 44 tackles (five for a loss), one sack and a fumble recovery. Those numbers are pretty special considering no quarterback in his right mind was challenging Woodson.
True fans of the Tennessee Volunteers wrote off the Heisman Trophy ceremony forever, regardless of how strong or weak Manning's and Woodson's resumes were.
You Googled "Eric Berry's Twin Brothers" After He Left for the NFL
Eric Berry was, is and will always be the man. For my money, he's the best defensive back in Tennessee history, and I have the numbers to back that up.
Not only his play, but Berry's character made him a standout as a Volunteer. He was a typical student on the Hill, stayed out of trouble and took on rigorous courses in hopes of becoming a dentist one day. Maybe after the NFL, Eric.
After earning back-to-back Consensus All-American honors, Berry rightfully declared early for the NFL draft. Immediately, Vol fans started researching his two younger brothers on the internet.
Evan and Elliot Berry are twins who will be juniors this fall. They still have a lot of growing to do, but Evan appears to have a stockier build than Elliot or older brother Eric. Maybe a linebacker/safety combo of Berry twins in the fall of 2014?
Yeah, I'm a Vol fan.
You Refer to Coach Robert Neyland as "the General"
Whenever you hear "the General" on Rocky Top, no one asks which one. No one gets confused as to whether you're talking about World War I or World War II.
I would bet that even history teachers at the University of Tennessee refer to General Robert Neyland simply as "General."
Neyland took over as head coach of the Vols in 1926 and coached Tennessee to a 173-31-12 record until his retirement in 1952.
Like the honorable soldier he was, General Neyland fought in World War II from 1941 to 1945. Add 40 more wins and a few more championships to his stats had he stayed.
He created the legendary Game Maxims of Tennessee football that are still read before each and every game. No man before or since has had such a profound influence on the program.
Salute your General, Vol fans.
You Tear Up When You See the "Stumble and Fumble" from 1998
I've mentioned this in numerous other articles in my archives, but it bears repeating: Any great Vol fan can't watch Clint Stoerner's fumble without getting a little choked up.
When I first filled out my profile here on Bleacher Report, this was my "All-Time Sports Moment," and that hasn't changed.
Both Tennessee and Arkansas entered the game at 8-0, and the game was nationally televised on the evening of November 7th.
The Vols looked like they were done for until Stoerner tripped over his right guard and fumbled the ball that Billy Ratliff soon recovered. The perfect season was kept alive, and the rest was history.
You Test the Leg Strength of Every Kid Named "Colquitt"
From Craig to Jimmy to Dustin and finally Britton, the Vols owe a lot of their past success in punting to the Colquitt family.
I haven't confirmed it, but it was reported to me on Twitter that the Colquitts are responsible for nearly 21 miles in punting for Tennessee. Wow!
One way you know you're a Vol fan is if you stop in your tracks and ask the little boy who just said his name was "Bobby Colquitt" to punt the grapefruit that you're holding.
Who would blame you?
You Love the Pride of the Southland Marching Band
As a member of the 2007 Pride of the Southland Marching Band that was lucky enough to play in the Vols' last SEC championship appearance, I felt firsthand the love that Tennessee fans have for their band.
Who knew that redneck, hillbilly, Southern-born and bred Volunteers could know or care so much about a marching band?
The Pride kicks off each college football Saturday with small pep rallies at various tailgates. Then, they make the famous march to the stadium where they play Rocky Top, Fight Vols Fight and Down the Field over and over to the crowd's content.
At the bottom of the steep Andy Holt Drive that passes by the beautiful Haslam Business Building, the Pride flips up toward the Hill and the hallowed Ayres Hall to perform their weekly mini-concert—the Salute to the Hill.
Right there on Phillip Fulmer Way, old and young fans of the Vols alike get acquainted and reacquainted with the power and precision that is the Pride of the Southland Marching Band.
Opening the T is perhaps the best college tradition of all. The annual Circle Drill half-time show is truly awesome (yes, band members catch glimpses on the JumboTron), and the humorous 12 Days of Christmas performance is always great.
You Can Identify with the Majority of the "Stuff Vols Fans Say Often" Video
This video is amazing. It's spot on and clearly made by some real Vol fans.
You Advocate for Fellow Fans to Pay the Listed Prices at Concessions
You need to have made a few trips to Neyland Stadium, but I hope most of you understand this part.
The public address announcer for the Tennessee Volunteers, Bobby Denton, has a great, edgy way of speaking his script that is just on the verge of yelling. I love it. It means Tennessee football.
He always reads a piece about the prices at the concession stand being listed in your program followed by, "We ask you to pay these prices, and please, PAY NO MORE!"
What does it mean? Nothing. It's just funny. But it's tradition, and nearly all of the stadium joins with him in chanting it.
You Think Al Wilson Was the Greatest Linebacker in the History of Football
Al Wilson was a fantastic linebacker, yes, but Vol fans' love of him is bordering on an obsession. Aside from Peyton Manning, he is probably the player that promising young Vols are compared to most.
Wilson was the captain of the 1998 national championship team and embodied grit and determination as well as any player that has worn the orange and white.
He tallied 77 tackles, five fumble recoveries, four sacks and one interception that year and was named a Consensus All-American.
Clearly, I'm not trying to rain on Wilson's parade, but with such a long list of great linebackers at Tennessee, Vol fans are fixated on him!
There are worst things to be dedicated to than the greatness of old No. 27, though. I'm not interested in arguing his talent. Just an observation.
You Yell "Woo!" After the Lyrics "Good Ole Rocky Top"
When on vacation in Wyoming, my little sister (future Class of 2016), and I made sure to add the necessary "Woo!" after Good ole Rocky Top, in our school's great song.
Everyone looked and laughed, but we just knew it was our duty. I'm sure many of you have similar stories.
The truth is, the urge to add this part to the song is a habit I can't control anymore. That's a habit I'm happy to succumb to.