Ed Murphey Award Winners

The Ed Murphey Award is awarded for the most outstanding men’s track & field performance each year since 1965. Notable winners through the years have included Richmond Flowers, Willie Gault, Todd Williams, Lawrence Johnson, Anthony Famiglietti, Justin Gatlin, Aries Merritt and Justin Hunter. Murphey was a member of the 2005 class inducted into the Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame. He went in with five other Volunteers, including fellow track athletes Darwin Bonds and Flowers. Bill Justus, W.J. Siler and Haywood Harris also represented UT in the 2005 class.

1965

Pat Pomphrey

Pat Pomphrey competed for the Vols from 1963-66 setting school records in the 60 hurdles (7.2), 120 HH (13.9) and 440 IM Hurdles (51.9). His 120 yard hurdles outdoor mark still ranks in the top ten times in the event. Pomphrey finished third in the 120 yard high hurdles at 1966 NCAA outdoor meet to become UT’s first All-America in outdoor track. He also placed fourth in the 1965 NCAA meet and at the Penn Relays in 1966 he teamed with Larry Bogart, Phil Smith and Roger Neiswender to win the Shuttle Hurdle Relay in 57.2. Pomphrey won the first of his five SEC titles in the 60 yard indoor hurdles in 1964. In 1965 he won both the 120 hurdles and 440 IM hurdles and followed that up with the 1966 indoor 60 hurdles and the 120 outdoor titles.

1966

Bob Redington

Bob Redington, who won three consecutive (1964-65-66) SEC mile titles, set back to back school records in 1966 (4:05.0) and lowered the mark one week later in the SEC vs. ACC meet to 4:01.9. He also won SEC indoor 1000 yard run in 1964 and 1965. In 1966 he became the first UT runner to break the 9 minute mark in the two-mile winning both the SEC Indoor and outdoor titles. An accomplished cross runner as well, Redington was named All-America in 1965 finishing fourth in the NCAA meet and won the SEC individual championship that same year. In all Redington won seven SEC title during his career.

1967-68

Richmond Flowers

Richmond Flowers was one of the most highly recruited athletes in Tennessee history. He was named an All-America in football (1966) as well as track (1967, 68 and 69). He won the NCAA 60yd. hurdles in 1968 and had second and third place finishes in the 120 yd. hurdles in 1967 and 1969. Flowers, one of the top hurdles in the country during his 1967 season, was ranked #3 in the world. In 1968, he had become the #1 hurdler in the world and favored to win the gold at the Mexico Olympics. That year, he was just 1/10 second off the World 60 yard high hurdle record becoming Tennessee’s first NCAA Track Champion. Flowers defeated the World record holder, Earl McCullough and finished first seven times in eight major meets. He also defeated Willie Davenport the eventual 1968 Olympic Gold medalist.

However, his dream of winning the Olympic title ended on June 2, 1968 with a season ending hamstring injury. He set school records during his career in the 60HH (6.9), 120 HH (13.3) and earned a total of seven varsity letters (3 football and 4 track) at UT. In all Flowers was a part of nine SEC titles, six individual and three relays. He currently holds the record for most outdoor individual titles with seven. He was voted the most outstanding performer in the 1967 SEC meet when he won the 100 and the 120 HH and anchored the winning 440 relay. He won indoor 60 HH titles in 1967 and 1968 to go along with three straight 120 yd. HH titles In 1967, 68, 69. He also ran on SEC champion 400m Relays teams in 1967, 68 and 1969. Flowers was inducted into the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame in 2002 and the Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame in 2005.

1969-70

Bill Skinner

Bill Skinner was 29 years old when he enrolled as a freshman in 1968 at UT and immediately made an impact as he threw the javelin a freshman record of 2S2-5. Skinner was an elite javelin thrower who swept the NCAA, AAU and USTFF tiles in 1970 in addition to setting the school record 291-10 which is still the mark today for the old javelin. An imposing figure at 6-7, 250, Skinner earned All-America honors by winning the NCAA title in 1970 and placing second in the 1969 meet held in Knoxville. He also captured three consecutive SEC javelin titles in 1968, 69, and 1970. Beating the Russian, Janis Lusis, at Leningrad in 1970 gave him his greatest satisfaction since Lusis had won Olympic gold in 1968, silver in 1972 and bronze in 1964. Skinner was captain of the Pan American team in 1971.

1971

James Craig

James Craig was one of two pioneers (the other Audry Hardy) to join the track team in 1968 as the first African American scholarship runners. Craig helped anchor a dominant UT track team that won four straight SEC championships. He made All-America honors in 1971 as a member of the indoor and outdoor mile relays teams that placed second and fourth in the NCAA meets. A holder of five SEC championships, Craig ran the 800-meter, 4×400 relay and 4×800 relay collecting three individual 800 titles (1971 indoor, 1969 and 1971outdoor). He was also a member of SEC Indoor relay title winners in the 4×800 indoors in 1969 and 1971.

1972

Willie Thomas

Willie Thomas was captain of UT’s first NCAA Championship track team in 1974. Thomas was the first UT athlete to be both two-time captain and two-time individual national champion. He captured All-America honors by winning the outdoor NCAA 880 yard run twice during his career. The first came in 1972 when he set the school record of 1:47.1 and the second in 1974. He was also a member of the second place two-mile Relay team in 1973. In SEC action Thomas was a four-time SEC Champion capturing the 1973 800 indoor title and added 1973 and 1974 outdoor 800 crowns to his list of championships as well as being anchor on the winning two mile relay in 1973. His career best time of 1:47.1 still ranks fifth on the all-time listing.

1973

Doug Brown

It is not every year that an athlete like Doug Brown comes along. The track star was “Mr. Everything” in distance running at the University of Tennessee. During his collegiate career, Brown, who was the number-one-ranked steeplechaser in the U.S., held every distance record in Tennessee annals and was All-America four consecutive years (1971 to 1974) in three different events (six mile, steeplechase and cross-country). Brown was also the first Tennessee track man to be on a United States Olympic team. He was SEC Cross Country Champion in 1972 and 1973 and was second in the NCAA in 1972 to lead Tennessee to its first NCAA title. In the indoor two-mile event, Brown was SEC champion in 1973 and runner-up in 1971and 1972 and was sixth-place finisher in the 1973 NCAA.

Outdoors, in 1973 and 1974, Brown set the SEC distance records by winning the three-mile, six-mile, and steeplechase, and in NCAA competition, he was the steeplechase champion in 1973 and 1974. His 1974 steeplechase mark of 8:23.2 still stands atop the Vols All-Time ranking. Brown also set UT records, including the two-mile (8:39.8), three-mile (13:27.4), 5000-meter (14:10.5), six-mile (27:51.6) and 10,000-meter (29:36.7). Brown later served as Head Track Coach from 1986-95. Under his leadership Brown coached teams won 4 SEC Championships and captured the 1991 NCAA Outdoor Title.

1974-75

Reggie Jones

Reggie Jones was an eight time All-America and key member of the 1974 National Championship team. The star of the 1974 National Champion squad, Reggie Jones tallied 19.5 points; the most ever by a Vol at that time in the NCAA championship. He accumulated a win in the 100-yard dash (9.18), second in the 220-yard dash (20.00) and ran the second leg of Tennessee’s third-place 4×110-yard relay (39.69). Jones performed at peak level for three seasons, earning All-America honors in three individual races (60, 100 and 220) and one relay (4×110). In addition to his 1974 title in the 100m he added a 220 win in 1975 and was a member of the winning 4×100 team in 1976. His only scoring NCAA race lower than third was a fourth place 60 dash in 1975. In the SEC Jones won 220 titles in 1974 and 1975 and was a member of SEC title winning 440 relay teams in 1974, 1975 and 1976. On July 26, 1975, running in Boston, Jones won the 100 event recording a time of 9.9 that equaled the then world record and stands as UT’s all-time 100 yard mark. His 220 yard dash mark of 20.53 currently ranks as the seventh best UT mark. In 1974, Jones also won the 100m and 200m in the USA vs. Russia International meet beating the then Olympic Champion Valeriy Borzov from Russia.

1976 and 1978

Phil Olsen

Phil Olsen made the Canadian Olympic team in 1976 and finished 11th in the finals in Montreal. A four time All-America at Tennessee, Olsen placed four straight years in the NCAA Champions from 1975-79, winning the javelin title in 1976 with a mark of 273-2. Olsen also won the 1978 sec Javelin title with a mark of 265-10.50. Olsen marks were among the tops in the nation and many consider him Canada’s best javelin thrower ever. However, trying to capture the Tennessee school record in the event was a mountain hard to climb since Vol great Bill Skinner had posted 191-10 mark in 1970.

Olsen best mark of 287-11 in 1976 was a close as he could come placing him second all-time. Olsen however did win a Gold medal in the 1978 commonwealth games and competed in the Pan American games in 1975, 1979 and 1983.

1977

Jerome Morgan

Jerome Morgan was a two-sport letterman in football and track. He was a seven time All-America for the Vols first competing in the 400m where he placed sixth in the 1977 NCAA outdoor meet. But secondly he was one of the most valuable performers on the Vols relay units of 1976-78. In 1976 the Vols won the NCAA indoor mile and sprinted to the 4×100 outdoor championship and finished fourth in the 4×400 with Morgan a prime member. Again in the 1977 Outdoor NCAA the 4×400 unit was third and in 1978 Indoor meet the mile relay was fourth while the 4×400 finished third outdoors. In SEC competition the 4×100 relay won in 1975 and 1976 while the 4×400 won the crown in 1977.

1979

Paul Jordan

As a 56-4 triple jumper, Paul Jordan made the 1980 Olympic team when he finished 2nd in the Trials. But the U.S. didn’t go to the Olympics that year due to a boycott. He also competed in the 1976 trials and made the team in 1984. Jordan ranks third on the school all-time triple jump list with a 1979 mark of 54-9. During Jordan’s career he set and extended the Vol triple jump record seven times moving the mark from 52-6.25 to 54-9. A two time All-America, Jordan placed sixth in the outdoor NCAA in 1976 with a leap of 50-0.75 and during the 1979 indoor meet he was second with a 54-4 He also captured the 1979 SEC outdoor title with a mark of 52-8 and won SEC indoor crowns in 1977 and 1979. Jordan also won Penn Relay triple jump crowns in 1977 and 1979.

1980

Anthony Blair

Anthony Blair capped All-America honors 10 times during his career. Individually in the 440/400m in NCAA competition Blair won the 1980 indoor 440, and was second in the 1981 indoor meet. Blair’s best mark in the 400m dash at 45.91 stands number nine on the all-time list. In NCAA 4X400 competition, Blair was part of back to back national outdoor champion teams in 1980 and 1981. He was also on NCAA 4×400 team that finished third outdoor in 1978, fourth outdoor in 1979, fifth indoor in 1980 and second indoor in 1981. An exceptional middle distance runner Blair won the 1980 SEC Indoor 600 yard run in 1:11.46. In a three-way meet in 1980, his time of 1:09.19 still ranks as the school record for the 600 yard run. A solid performer on the Vol relay units Blair anchored of SEC Champion 4×400 relay teams in the 1981 Indoor meet and 1978 and 1979 outdoor championships.

1981

Jeff Phillips

Jeff Phillips won All-America honors four times during his career and set the school record of 10.11 in the 1981 NCAA 100 meter dash when he finished second. Phillips also recorded sixth place finishes in the 1980 and 1981 NCAA indoor 60 yard dash, an event he also at one time held the UT record of 5.9. A member of the 4×100 meter relay team, Phillips led the Vols to a third place finish in the 1981 NCAA outdoor meet. Phillips 100m mark of 10.11 ties for seventh on the all-time list while his 200m time of 20.36 ranks fifth currently. Although he never captured an SEC individual championship he was a solid point producer for the Vols during his career. Phillips was fifth in the 1981 SEC indoor 60 dash and that outdoor season in the 100m he finished second with a 10.29.

1982

David Patrick

David Patrick ran the 400 meters hurdles in the 1992 Summer Olympics and was the second American in the final, which was won by Kevin Young while setting the still standing current world record in the event. Patrick won two individual NCAA titles (880 yards indoor, 400 meter hurdles) while competing for the University of Tennessee. Patrick’s 400 meter hurdles mark of 48.44 set at the 1982 NCAA meet stands alone today as the best performance in the event. In all Patrick placed in seven events in NCAA competition. Other top finishes include third in the 1981 400m hurdles, and mile relay finishes of second indoor 1981 and sixth outdoor in 1982, Patrick was also a member of the 1982 indoor two-mile relay that finished fourth. In SEC competition Patrick won the 600 yard run at the 1981 indoor meet and captured the 800 indoor title in 1982. Patrick is the husband of Sandra Farmer-Patrick, who was also an elite 400 meters hurdler. The two had a history of success at the same meets, including the 1989 IAAF World Cup in Barcelona, Spain where both took the gold medal.

1983

Willie Gault

Willie Gault was in a class of his own and his performances spoke for themselves. The speedy receiver and kick returner earned All-America honors on the football field in 1982 and remains Tennessee’s record holder in total kick returns with 2,513 yards with 5 TD returns. As a two-sport letterman, Gault was also a prolific hurdler and sprinter. Gault, an 11-time All-America and three-time NCAA Champion, finished his track career with the Vols holding three school records. In all Gault set the 110m hurdles record three times during his career with his best mark a 13.26 which stood until 2006 when it was bested by Aries Merritt (13.21). At the 1983 NCAA Indoor Championships, Gault won both the 60-yard high hurdles and the 60-yard dash with times of 6.98 and 6.18, respectively. At the 1983 NCAA outdoor championships, Gault placed third in the 110-meter high hurdles, was sixth in the 100m and on the gold medal winning 4×100 meter relay. In 1982, Gault finished second in the 60y hurdles, second in the 100m dash in a school record 10.10 which remains the sixth best outdoor mark, and was second in the 110m hurdles. In 1981 Gault was second in the 60y hurdles and the 110m hurdles in NCAA action. In SEC action Gault won conference indoor titles in the 60 yard HH in 1981, 1982 and 1983. Gault’s conference outdoor crowns included the 1983 200m dash and the 1981 and 1982 110m hurdles and he also ran a leg on the 1983 champion 4×100. Gault qualified in the 110 meter hurdles, and would have participated in the 1980 Summer Olympics if the United States had not boycotted the event. In the 1988 Olympics, he made the American bobsledding team.

1984

Sam Graddy

Sam Graddy was a dual sport athlete lettering in football as a wide receiver in 1985 and 1986 and four seasons as a sprinter on the track from 1983-86. He currently sits atop Tennessee’s all-time performance list in the 55m dash (6.03) and ranks fourth in the 60m, fifth in the 100m (10.09) and eighth in the 200m (20.57) He earned All-America honors six times and was crowned a national champion three times, twice on his own and once as a member of a relay champion team. Graddy won the 1984 NCAA outdoor 100m dash, 55m dash in 1985 and was a member of the 4×100 which captured the title in 1983. In addition Graddy was a six time SEC Champion winning 55m dash titles in 1984, 1985, and 1986 and 1984 100m title to go along with relay victories as a the leadoff man on the 1983 and 1984 4xl00 meter relay teams. Graddy earned the honor of representing the United States at the 1984 Olympic Games in Los Angeles, Calif. He competed individually in the 100m and as a part of the U.S. 4xl00 relay team.

1985

Terry Scott

Terry Scott was a three time All-America winning the 100m dash in the 1985 NCAA meet with a 10.02w time. Scott’s preliminary time of 10.08 was a school record and currently tied for third best all-time. He was also a member of the 1983 champion 4×100 meter relay unit that recorded a 39.22 and finished third in 1983 in the 100m at 10.23 which set the UT freshman record. In SEC action Scott anchored the winning 4×100 relay at the 1984 meet. In the 1983 University Games Scott along with Vol teammates Sam Graddy and Willie Gault were members of the 4×100 winning relay unit.

1986

John Tillman

John Tillman was a member of the 1992 US Olympic team competing in the triple jump. Tillman set the current UT record with a leap of 55-7 set in 1985. Tillman was a six-time All-America placing both indoor and outdoor in the NCAAM in 1985, 1986 and 1987. His best finish of second in 1985 outdoor meet with a 55-7 mark earned him the UT record. Tillman’s best indoor national mark was a third place in 1986. Tillman ranks second on the indoor triple jump ranking at UT with a mark of 55–0 set in 1987. Tillman won six straight SEC triple jump crowns winning both the indoor and outdoor events in 1985, 1986 and 1987. As a longer jumper at the 1986 SEC meet, Tillman finished second Indoors and third outdoor and in 1987 conference meets he was fourth indoors and sixth outdoors. Tillman also won back to back Penn Relays triple jump titles in 1986 and 1987.

1987

Jonathan Quinn

Jonathan Quinn made All-America honors twice, placing ninth in the NCAA discus throw in 1986 and improving to a fifth place finish in 1987. His 195-10 mark at the NCAA Championships in 1987 set the school record and currently ranks as the third best mark in the event. In Southeastern Conference outdoor action, Quinn finished second in the discus in both 1986 (191-1) and 1987 (188-10).

1988

Don Moore

Donnie Moore won the 1988 SEC outdoor 110m hurdles title with a time of 13.94 in addition to placing third in the long jump with a 24-11 jump. An outstanding SSm hurdler Moore was fifth in the 1987 SEC indoor meet, finished second in 1988 with a 7.34 time, and in 1990 he was third. Moore suffered a hamstring injury that kept him out of the 1989 indoor season. In the 110m hurdles in conference action he finished third in 1989 and 1990. Moore was a member of the National Junior team in 1987.

1989

John Richardson

John Richardson was a three time gold medalist in the Javelin at the AAU Jr Olympics, setting a National record each year. In 1987 he was named to the Track and Field News All-America high School squad in the javelin. After high school, John attended Tennessee and was a three time All-America and was a key part of their 1991 NCAA Championship team. Richardson, who currently ranks third on the all-time list, set his best mark of 254-4 in 1990. Richardson placed three straight years in the NCAA javelin finishing sixth in both 1989 and 1990 and recording a runner finish in 1991. Richardson finished 11th in the 1988 World Junior meet. In SEC javelin action Richardson was fifth in 1988, fourth in 1989, and third in both 1990 and 1991.

1990 and 1992

Brian Brophy

Brophy, a three-time letter winner for the Vols, was one of the most accomplished decathletes in program history. He won the 1990 SEC Championship in the decathlon, posting a total of 7,537 points and earned All-America honors as the national runner-up at the NCAA Championships with a mark of 7779. He earned All-America honors again in 1991 after taking third at the NCAA meet and played a big role in helping the Vols win the 1991 national title. As a senior in 1992, Brophy scored 8,276 points to win the NCAA Championship in the decathlon and set a then-UT record. During Brophy’s career he set the decathlon record three times with his career best mark of 8276 still second on the all-time list. Brophy currently holds UT decathlon event record in the discus (176-8) and ranks second in the shot put (51-5.50). Brophy was inducted into the Knoxville Sports Hall of Fame in 2015.

1991

Todd Williams

Todd Williams stands as one of the finest distance runners in Tennessee and U.S. history. A two-time Olympian (1992, 1996) and World Championships competitor (1993, 1995), Williams earned his spot as the top U.S. distance man in the 1990s. Williams won the 10,000m title at the USA Outdoors four times–1992, 1993, 1995 and 1996. Williams placed seventh in the world in the 10,000m at the 1993 World Championships and was 10th in the event at the 1992 Olympics. Williams also won USA cross country titles in 1991 and 1993. He likewise starred at Tennessee during his 1988-91 tenure. Williams set the school record for 3,000m (7:S8.34), 5,000m (13:41.50i) and 10,000m (28:18.4m). His 10,000 and 5000 meter marks stand as the current school record. Williams was Tennessee’s top NCAA scorer in 1991 with 14 points courtesy of a runner-up finish in the 10,000m and third-place finish in the 5,000m. His points were crucial as the Vols secured the 1991 NCAA Outdoor title at Oregon’s storied Hayward Field. Williams won four SEC titles-the 1989 and 1990 cross country crown, the 1991 indoor 5,000m, the 1991 outdoor 10,000m and Williams accumulated eight All· America honors between cross country and track.

1991 and 1993

Randy Jenkins

The Randy Jenkins story is about overcoming the odds and meeting the challenges of life head on. Jenkins, helped lead Tennessee track and field team to the 1991 NCAA title, finishing second in the high jump with a mark of 7-6.50. After a visit to his doctor a few weeks later, the high of winning an NCAA title was sobered by the diagnosis of Hodgkin’s Lymphoma -or cancer. Undaunted, Jenkins continued attending classes at UT, earning a 3.24 GPA and dean’s list recognition the next semester. He would, however, miss the entire 1992 track season. Jenkins spent most of the fall and winter of 1992 and 1993 working his way back into jumping shape. Remarkably, Jenkins qualified for the 1993 NCAA’s with a jump of 7-3.25. At the NCAA meet, he jumped 7-5.75 and taking home the title. Jenkins won the 1994 NCAA Indoor and outdoor titles with a school records of 7-7. Jenkins also won SEC indoor titles in 1990 and 1991 and captured the 1994 outdoor crown.

1993-94

Jose Parrilla

Jose Parrilla, an American middle distance runner who specialized in the 800 meters, finished sixth at the 1995 World Championships in Athletics in Gothenburg. Known for coming from behind with a strong finishing kick, his personal best 800m time is 1:43.97, set in 1992 in the U.S. Olympic Trials. He qualified again for the U.S. team at the 1996 Summer Olympics, making him a two-time Olympian. While running for Tennessee he won three successive NCAA Championships from 1992, 1993 and 1994, a feat only duplicated twice before (by Charles Hornbostei and John Woodruff), both from the 1930s. A 10 time All-America , Parrilla was sixth in 1991 indoor, eighth American in 1992 and third in 1993. Other outdoor NCAA finishes include a sixth in 1991. The current record holder in the 800m with a time of 1:43.97 set in the 1992 Olympic trials. In SEC action Parrilla won the 800 meter runs four straight years from 1991-94, plus winning Indoor crowns at that distance in 1992, 1993 and 1994.

1995-96

Lawrence Johnson

Lawrence Johnson’s career marks in the pole vault are outstanding.  Johnson is a seven-time U.S. national champion, four-time NCAA champion, six-time conference champion and six-time All-America. Johnson earned the silver medal with a clearance of 5.90m (19-4.25) at the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney, Australia.  A two-time Olympian, Johnson’s strongest year came in 2001 when he brought home a gold medal at the IAAF World Indoor Championships in Portugal at 5.95m (19-6.25). The same year he also took first place at the U.S. Indoor and Outdoor Championships and ended the year ranked second in the United States and fourth in the world, his highest spot in both rankings. Johnson set American and NCAA records of 5.98m (19-7.50) at Tom Black Track in Knoxville on May 25, 1996. Johnson was NCAA Champion indoors 1994, 1996, and finished second in 1993. At the outdoor NCAA meets Johnson won in 1995, 1996 and was ninth in 1993. Johnson’s mark of 19-1 in the 1996 meet set the NCAA meet record. In SEC competition he swept the field outdoor winning the event in 1994, 1995 and 1996 and captured the 1993, 1994 and 1996 indoor SEC titles along the way. Johnson holds Tennessee school record records indoor (19-1.5) and outdoors (19-7.5) along with the SEC meet record of 19-0.25 set in 1994.

1997

Aaron Ausmus

A local Campbell County product, Aaron Ausmus was the 1997 NCAA Indoor shot put champion and a two-time All-America. Ausmus won the indoor title with a mark of 62-4.5 and came back in the 1997 outdoor season to place sixth in the NCAA meet with a mark of 61-1.25.  Ausmus best shot put of 63-5 places him third on UT all-performers listing and his discus throw of 186-9 is currently ninth best throw. In conference action in 1996 he was eighth in the weight throw and was fourth in the outdoor shot put. In the 1997 SEC indoor, Ausmus was second in the shot put and sixth in the weight throw.  After college, Ausmus began a career in the field of strength and conditioning and served in that position at Tennessee in 2009.

1998

Russell Johnson

Russell Johnson boasts a successful career as a Tennessee athlete. He currently stands second on Tennessee’s storied pole vault top-10 list with a best of (5.65m) 18-6.5, trailing only collegiate record holder Lawrence Johnson. His best indoor mark of 17-9.5 ranks seventh all-time on the Vol list. A three time All-America, Johnson was 11th in the 1998 NCAA indoor meet and finished fifth outdoor that same year at 17-10.5. In the 1999 NCAA outdoor meet Johnson was seventh with a vault of 16-10.75. Johnson won the 1998 SEC indoor pole vault with a 17-2.25 vault and followed that vault in the outdoor season to finish second in the SEC with a 17-9.25. Russ served seven years as a Volunteer assistant coach working with the pole vaulters.

1999

Tom Pappas

Pappas won the gold medal at the 2003 World Championships held outside Paris, France, and was rated number 1 in the world that year by Track & Field News. He is a five-time US champion (2000, 2002, 2003, 2006, 2007) and was the 1999 NCAA champion while attending the University of Tennessee. He is the current school record holder in the decathlon with 8,463 points. He finished fifth at the 2000 Olympic decathlon, and competed in but did not finish the decathlon due to a foot injury at the 2004 Olympic Games. His personal best in the decathlon is 8,784 points while winning the 2003 US Championships held at Stanford University, CA. He won the 2003 Jesse Owens Award from USATF, signifying he was Athlete of the Year. Pappas won the 1999 NCAA champion decathlon title and finished eighth in the 1997 event, both of which earned him All-America honors. Pappas won the 1997 SEC decathlon championship and also captured the javelin title in 1999.  

2000

Anthony Famiglietti

After graduating from Patchogue-Medford High School on Long Island, New York, Famiglietti attended Appalachian State  and Tennessee where he graduated in 2000. At Appalachian State, Famiglietti was 1996 Southern Conference Freshman of the year in Cross Country and 1997 Southern Conference XC Runner of the Year runner-up. On the track, he was 1998 Southern Conference Champion in both the steeplechase and the 5000 meters. In 1998, he transferred to Tennessee, where he placed 11th at the SEC Cross Country Championships and 75th at the NCAA Cross Country Championships. In 1999, he was sixth at the NCAA Outdoor Championships in the steeplechase, and eighth in his heat at the U.S. Championships. In 2000, his final year of college, Fam was second at the SEC Championships, fourth at the NCAA Championships, and seventh at the U.S. Olympic Trials, where he ran an 8:25.37 which ranks third on the Vols all-time listing.

2001-02

Justin Gatlin

In the fall of 2000, Justin Gatlin arrived at University of Tennessee as a good high school 110m hurdler and ended up as an Olympic gold medal  sprinter and winner of six consecutive NCAA titles. In 2002 Gatlin left Tennessee after his sophomore season to join the professional ranks. Just two years later, he won the Olympic gold medal in the 100m. Gatlin set the current school records in the 100m (10.05) and the 200m (19.86). He also set freshman record in both at 10.08 and 20.29. At the NCAA Championships he swept the 60m and 200m in 2002. Outdoors in NCAA competition he won the 100m and 200m in both 2001 and 2002. Gatlin also won SEC indoor titles in the 55m and 200m in 2002. He added SEC outdoor crowns in the 100m in 2002 and the 200m in 2001 and 2002 as well as being on the winning 4×100 both years. Gatlin also ranks third on the all-time list in the 110m hurdles at 13.4.

2002

Gary Kikaya

A native of Congo, Gary Kikaya was a member of his nation’s Olympic teams in 2004 and 2008. As a Vol, Kikaya won the 400m dash at the 2002 NCAA outdoor championships in Baton Rouge helping Tennessee to a second place national finish. In winning Kikaya posted the current school record time of 44.53 to become the first Volunteer to win the NCAA 400m dash, although Anthony Blair tied for the NCAA Indoor 440 yd. title in 1980. Kikaya’s time stood as the third-fastest time in the world in 2002 and fastest by a collegian.  Kikaya also anchored the 4x400m relay to a fifth-place finish.  Kikaya broke school records in the indoor 400m dash, outdoor 400m dash, indoor 4x400m relay, outdoor 4x200m relay, outdoor 4x400m relay. Kikaya won the 400m dash with a blazing 44.86 at the 2002 SECs to rewrite his school record from a day earlier when he ran a 45.00 to break the 1974 time of 45.04 by Vol great Darwin Bond. During the indoor season Kikaya broke the indoor school record in the 400m dash twice more during the NCAA Indoors to move the total to four times he has broken the school indoor record from Feb. 9 to March 9. His game effort in the 400m dash proved essential to the Vol 2002 NCAA indoor championship title. He ran 46.07 to notch the second-fastest NCAA 400m dash prelim time and was clocked in at a blistering 45.93 to post the current indoor school 400m dash record to earn third at the NCAA Indoors. He also anchored the Vols 4×400 relay team to a second place national finish.

2003

Jabari Greer

A two sport letterman in football and track, Jabari Greer authored a breakout 2003 campaign to place him in the company of Tennessee’s all-time great high hurdlers. Greer chiseled his name into the list of Volunteer greats with a championship, school-record 60m hurdles time of 7.55 at the NCAA Indoors which still ranks as the second best indoor mark. On his way to the title in his first season competing on the indoor track, Greer topped the legendary Willie Gault’s school record of 7.67, untouchable standard for 20 years, twice in the same day with his heat-winning 7.63 in the prelims and 7.55 in the finals. During the outdoor season he was named USTCA National Athlete of the Week for his outstanding SEC Outdoors performance, Greer achieved his high-water mark for the outdoor season, winning the 110m hurdles with a lifetime-best time of 13.32 the fastest time by a collegian in 2003 and the third-fastest time in school history. Greer also led off Tennessee’s third-consecutive SEC 4x100m relay champion in fine form, getting the Vols out of the hole in a hurry and on the way to a 38.92 finish. In the 2003 NCAA meet Greer led off the Vols’ runner-up 4x100m relay team, steaming to a season-best 38.72 finish–the second-fastest quartet in school history and the fastest time the Vols have ever run in the NCAA finals.

2004

Leigh Smith

Leigh Smith represented the United States at the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing. Smith was a three time All-America placing fourth in the NCAA javelin in 2001, eighth (American) in 2003 and fifth in 2004.  Smith, who won the javelin event three times in SEC outdoor meets (2001, 2003 and 2004), is the current school record holder in the event with a mark of 267-11. As a freshman in 2001, Smith set the freshman record in 232-10 and helped Tennessee to the men’s national championship. As a senior in 2004, he shattered Tennessee school and the SEC Championship javelin records (257-10) en route to his third individual SEC championship honor.

2005-06

Aries Merritt

Aries Merritt was a 2012 Olympic gold medalist and world record holder hurdler. A seven-time All-America and two-time NCAA Champion with the Vols, Merritt won NCAA titles in the 2006 in the 60m hurdles and 110m hurdles. The current school record holder in the 110m hurdles ran a 13.21 to better the 1982 mark set by Willie Gault at 13.26. He also won SEC titles in 2005 in the 110m hurdles and in 2006 he won both the indoor 55m hurdles and outdoor 110m hurdles. Merritt blazed past a star-studded field to capture the gold medal in the 110-meter hurdles in London Olympics in 2012. He posted a personal-best time of 12.92, the second fastest time in Olympic history – to become the Tennessee track and field program’s sixth gold medal winner. Just one month after the 2012 Olympics, he shattered the 110-meter hurdles world record in Brussels. He finished the event in 12.8 seconds, besting the world record by .07 seconds in his first Olympic Games.

2005

Garland Porter

Garland Porter was a very versatile weight men setting the school record in in the 35-lb weight throw in 2005 with a mark of 72-5.75.  He also stands second on the all-time hammer listing with a mark of 216-5 and ranks eighth on the outdoor shot listing at 60-5.50. His weight throw mark earned him All-America honors as he placed third in the 2005 NCAA meet. Porter also finished 10th in the event at the 2004 NCAA’s.  Porter added to his All-America status by finishing as the seventh best American in the 2005 hammer throw with a mark 204-7.  His best throw of 216-8 came in the Mid-East Regional in 2005. In SEC competition in 2004 Porter finished fourth in the hammer (200-4) and fifth in the shot. During the SEC indoor season in 2004 he was second in the weight throw and sixth in the shot put. In 2005 SEC competition, Porter was sixth in the outdoor and indoor shot put and finished second in the weigh throw.

2007

Rubin Williams

Rubin Williams ended his career as the most-decorated All-America in school history. His 16 All-America honors rank ahead of Vol legends Justin Gatlin and Leonard Scott, who are tied for second with 12. Williams became the first sprinter in school history to earn four outdoor All-America honors in the 200m. He placed sixth in 2008, second in 2007, third in 2006 and ninth in 2005. He won his only individual national title at the 2008 NCAA indoor meet breaking Justin Gatlin’s school record in the 200m with his 20.36 clocking.  Williams also won SEC titles indoors in the 200m in 2007 and 2008 and captured the 55m dash in 2006. He added an outdoor crown in the 200m in 2007 and was a member of the winning 4×100 in 2007. Williams finished sixth in the 200m at the US Olympic Trials. He currently ranks ninth on Tennessee’s all-time performance list with his personal-best time of 10.12 in the 100 and sixth in the 200 with his 20.40.

2008

Jangy Addy

Representing Liberia, Jangy Addy is a two time Olympian competing in both 2008 and 2012 Olympic Games. Addy was named 2008 SEC Field Athlete of the Year and won his fourth All-America honor by scoring 7,916 points in the 2008 NCAA Championships placing second in the decathlon. His 13.74 clocking in the decathlon 110 hurdles broke the meet record of 13.85 and, combined with his collegiate-record run of 13.70 from the SEC Outdoor Championships, gave Addy the top-two collegiate times in the history of the race.  Addy won SEC decathlon titles in 2007 (7461 points) and 2008 (8010 points) and was the fifth Vol to score over 8000 points in the event. Addy, who also won the heptathlon at the 2008 SEC Indoor Championships for the second straight year, scored a personal-best score of 5,836 points that ranks third on the Vols all-time performance list and ranked ninth all-time among American collegians in the heptathlon. His performance also featured a world-record tying time of 7.77 in the heptathlon 60 hurdles. Addy entered the 2008 NCAA Indoor Championships with the fastest time in the 60-meter hurdles. His 7.67 clocking tied him with Willie Gault for third on the all-time performance list. He finished third in the event at the conference championship meet with a time of 7.77. Addy also recorded a personal-best and NCAA provisional-qualifying long jump of 24-8 1/4 winning the collegiate section at the New Balance Collegiate Invitational.

2009-10

Evander Wells

Evander Wells qualified for all eight NCAA Championship meets during his career, earning All-America accolades on eight occasions. He was a 20-time SEC scorer, including an SEC relay championship and ranks among the top 10 in school history in the 60, 100, 200 and 300 meters at the end of 2010. In a season that produced spectacular performances, his best effort came at the USA Outdoor Championships where he finished fourth in the 200-meter dash in a wind-aided season best of 20.31. He also advanced to the final round of the 100 meters, winding up his season with a seventh-place clocking of 10.39. Among the national and world leaders during the 2010 season, he won five 200m races outdoors. Wells was fourth in 2010 SEC Indoor 200m and a seventh-place result in the 60m and qualified for the NCAA Indoor Championships in both events, He finished fourth at SEC Outdoors and seventh at USAs in the 100m dash. Wells best time of 10.08 at 100 meters and 20.25 in the 200 meters places him third on the all-time listing in both events.

2011

Justin Hunter

Justin Hunter was a USTFCCCA Indoor All-America in the long jump and named to the 2011 SEC Indoor All-freshman team. He earned All-America acclaim in the long jump, finishing eighth at the 2011 NCAA Indoor Championships with a leap of 25-4.25 and placed fifth at SEC Indoor meet, carding a mark of 25-4. After competing as a member of Vol football team he opened the season with a lifetime best of 26-1 to triumph at the Kentucky Invitational. At the Penn State nationals Relays he jumped 26-1.50 carding a UT indoor freshman record and the No. 3 indoor mark all-time by a Vol. As a high jumper Hunter notched a high jump indoor best, clearing 6-10.25 to place third at the Hokie Invitational and was 10th at SEC Indoors at 6-8.75. Hunter finished seventh in the long jump at SEC Outdoors with a best of 25-7.50 and was 10th in the high jump at the league meet at 6-11. His 2011 best outdoor long jump of 25-10.25 came at the Penn Relays, a mark that was a half inch shy of the UT freshman outdoor record and ranked him No. 7 on UT’s all-time outdoor performers list.

2012 and 2014

Tavis Bailey

Tavis Bailey was a 10 time SEC place winner in the discus, shot put and 35-pound weight throw. Bailey is the current UT record holder in the discus at 211-8 and third all-time in the shot at 63-3.50. He captured the indoor SEC shot crown in 2014 and had second place finishes in the discus in 2012 and 35-pound weight throw in 2015. A national runner-up in the men’s discus (203-2), winning a silver at the 2015 NCAA Outdoor Championships which earned him All-America honors. He also was honorable mention All-America in the shot put.  Bailey was named to the 2012 Outdoor All-SEC Second Team and SEC All-Freshman Team.

2013

Jake Blankenship

Jake Blankenship is a four-time USTFCCCA All-America and led the nation with an indoor mark of 5.45 meters. Blankenship earned First Team All-America honors for the 2014 outdoor season and the 2015 indoor and outdoor seasons and was a second team honoree for the 2013 outdoor season. In 2015, he was the national runner-up at the NCAA Indoor Championships and placed sixth in the NCAA Outdoor Championships. In 2015 he set career marks, clearing 5.80 meters (19-0.25) in the indoor and outdoor seasons which are the second best vaults at UT. His 5.80-meter outdoor mark was the eighth-best mark in the world during the 2015 outdoor season. Blankenship enjoyed an outstanding 2015 summer competing for Team USA. He earned bronze at the USATF Championships with a final clearance of 5.60 meters (18- 4.25). Blankenship took bronze at the Pan American Games by clearing a height of 5.40 meters (17- 8.50) and also competed at the World Championships in China.

2015 and 2017

Christian Coleman

Christian Coleman coming off a stellar freshman campaign that saw him earn the 2015 SEC Indoor Freshman Runner of the Year as well as the league’s Co-Freshman of the Year honor for the outdoor season. He was an indoor All-America after finishing sixth in the 60-meter dash at the NCAA Indoor Championships. The Atlanta native would go on to score second team All-America honors during the outdoor season, finishing 15th in the National Championships in both the 100 and 200-meter dash.   At the 2015 SEC Championships, Coleman ran a best of 10.19 during the preliminary round en route to a seventh +place finish overall. In the 200 meters, Coleman ran a new career-best of 20.73. Still, his best performance of the year was reserved for the biggest stage yet at the NCAA East Prelim. Needing a PR to have even a hope of moving on to Eugene, Coleman put down a career-best 20.61 — the 10th-fastest 200 time in program history. Coleman also secured a place on Team USA for the Pan American Junior Championships with a runner-up finish in the 100-meter dash with a 10.19 at the 2015 USATF Junior Championships. 2017- In the 2017 season Coleman continued to be outstanding. He won the 60m (6.45) and 200m (20.11) NCAA Indoor National Championships becoming only the third person to complete the double. Coleman won the 60m dash by tying a collegiate record (6.45) while winning the race by a .09 second margin of victory, the largest margin of victory in NCAA Championship history and set a NCAA Indoor National Championship meet record. Posted the second-fastest 200m time in collegiate time in history as he finished in 20.11 and the fastest in the world that year. Added SEC title in the 60m and runner-up in the 200m as he posted times of 6.52 and 20.50 in the finals of the SEC Indoor Championship. In the outdoor season Coleman ranked as the only person on all four collegiate sprinting top-10 lists and he is in the top two of all four: 60m (6.45, t-1st), 200m (20.11, 2nd), 100m (9.82, 1st) and 200m (19.85, 2nd). Joined #VFL Justin Gatlin (2002) as the only two people to ever complete the double-double of winning the indoor 60m and 200m national championships and the outdoor 100m and 200m national titles in one year. Won the 100m dash in 10.04 (-2.1) seconds and the 200m dash in 20.25 (-3.1) seconds to become the 25th person to record the NCAA outdoor double. Set the collegiate record in the 100m dash with a time of 9.82 (+1.3) in the semifinals of the NCAA Championship, a time that placed him as the ninth-fastest person in world history and the fourth-fastest American ever. Won the 100m and 200m SEC Championships by becoming the first collegian to ever record wind-legal times under 10 seconds (9.97) in the 100m and a 200m time under 20 seconds (19.98).

2016

Nathan Strother

Nathan Strother broke the varsity indoor 400m meter record twice during the 2016 indoor season lowering the mark first to 46.85 in January and then dropping it to 46.25 in February. At the NCAA Indoor meet he finished second in the 400m with a 46.28 and was also a member of the 4×400 meter relay team that paced fifth (3:06.29). During the outdoor season he finished fifth in the 400 meters in a time of 45.72 at the NCAA Outdoor Championships. Also ran a prelim time of 45.07, the second fastest 400 meter time in program history behind school record of 44.53 set by Gary Kikaya in 2002. Nathan placed fourth at the SEC Outdoor Championships at 400m with a mark of 45.61.  As a member of relay teams, Nathan was anchor of the 4×400 meter team that placed third at the SEC Outdoor Championships and on the 4×100 team that captured fourth.

2018

Zach Long

Zach Long won the Ed Murphey Award in 2018.