The final heat of the 2011 NCAA Division III Swimming and Diving Championships in Knoxville, Tenn. began with more drama than any men’s heat in the last 31 years. Denison had to finish within two spots of Kenyon to retain its lead and unseat the only overall champion the sport had seen in 31 years.
The full slideshow of photos from the event is located at the end of the story.
I remember showing up at my first UT football game as a photographer. Not a fan, student or band member, but with my mind focused on my goals for the next few hours and working to learn and accomplish those goals. I was impressed with how nice the facilities were, but it didn’t come as a surprise to me–this is Tennessee, an FBS (Division I) SEC program with a top-10 all-time winning percentage.
Neyland Stadium is known for being one of the largest stadiums in America–over 100,000 in capacity, but after the multimillion dollar renovations to its interior and exterior, it is one of the nation’s most beautiful as well.
Money goes to what people care about most, and Volunteer football is a big-revenue operation. Neyland Stadium is one of the oldest, finest and largest stadiums in the country for a reason–people are fanatical about the cleated brethren that don the orange and white jerseys and hit the wooden sign that says “I will give my all for Tennessee today,” as they leave the locker room.
The Tennessee football locker room has been compared to the quality of NFL locker rooms.
That locker room, by the way, was recently renovated and named for Peyton Manning after he made a $1 million contribution to the Neyland Stadium renovation project. According to UT’s website, Phase II of this plan alone was an estimated $27.4 million.
The media rooms that I’ve worked in on field level and in the press box are beautiful and spacious areas. They serve a pre-game meal, halftime meal, and snacks and pizza after the game to working members of the press. A similar routine occurs at men’s and women’s basketball games in Thompson Boling Arena. In addition, all media get parking passes near the venue, a storage area for gear, work space for writing/editing/uploading and dedicated athletic department personnel to help them solve problems and accomplish (most of ) their needs.
None of that exists at the Division III (DIII) level. Read more