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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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).


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.


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.


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.


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.


Lawrence Johnson

Lawrence Johnson won the Ed Murphey Award in 1995 and 1996.


Aaron Ausmus

Aaron Ausmus won the Ed Murphey Award in 1997.


Russell Johnson

Russell Johnson won the Ed Murphey Award in 1998.


Tom Pappas

Tom Pappas won the Ed Murphey award in 1999.


Anthony Famiglietti

Anthony Famiglietti won the Ed Murphey Award in 2000.


Justin Gatlin

Justin Gatlin won the Ed Murphey Award in 2001 and 2002.


Gary Kikaya

Gary Kikaya won the Ed Murphey Award in 2002.


Jabari Greer

Jabari Greer won the Ed Murphey Award in 2003.


Leigh Smith

Leigh Smith won the Ed Murphey Award in 2004.


Aries Merritt

Aries Merritt won the Ed Murphey Award in 2005 and 2006.


Garland Porter

Garland Porter won the Ed Murphey Award in 2005.


Rubin Williams

Rubin Williams won the Ed Murphey Award in 2007.


Jangy Addy

Jangy Addy won the Ed Murphey Award in 2008.


Evander Wells

Evander Wells won the Ed Murphey Award in 2009 and 2010.


Justin Hunter

Justin Hunter won the Ed Murphey Award in 2011.

2012 and 2014

Tavis Bailey

Tavis Bailey won the Ed Murphey Award in 2012 and 2014.


Jake Blankenship

Jake Blankenship won the Ed Murphey Award in 2013.

2015 and 2017

Christian Coleman

Christian Coleman won the Ed Murphey Award in 2015 and 2017.


Nathan Strother

Nathan Strother won the Ed Murphey Award in 2016.


Zach Long

Zach Long won the Ed Murphey Award in 2018.