The regular season may be over in football, but along with our continuing coverage of the Vols and Lady Vols on the hardwood, we'll be bringing you a month-long feature on Tennessee Athletics from 2000-2009.
It's been a decade of change for Tennessee's biggest sports, as the Vols watched the national profile of the football team decline and Phillip Fulmer exit, with Lane Kiffin now in his first year of rebuilding the program. On the other hand, Bruce Pearl's arrival has brought unprecedented success to Tennessee Basketball. And Pat Summitt has seen a bit of both, winning back-to-back National Championships only to get bounced in the first round of the NCAA Tournament for the first time ever.
Change began at the top, in a moment that won't be featured on any of our countdowns but impacted everything behind the scenes: Mike Hamilton replaced the retired Doug Dickey as athletic director in 2003, and in his short tenure he has replaced the coaches he inherited in football, basketball and baseball, while leading the charge in significant upgrades for each of those facilities.
The ups and downs of the last ten years have given us plenty to talk about - here's how we'll be remembering them over the next 31 days:
- Tennessee Football All-Decade Team - just as we did back in April with men's basketball, we'll breakdown the best of the best in Tennessee Football over the last ten years. And while some choices speak for themselves (we think Jason Witten and Eric Berry are pretty safe), we'll put the decision in your hands at the majority of positions, breaking down the candidates and then putting it to a vote, before revealing RTT's All-Decade Team at the end of the process.
- The Top 10 Moments of the Decade - Combining basketball (men's and women's) and football, we'll take a look at the top ten stories of the last ten years in Tennessee Athletics, looking at the good, the painful, and the noteworthy.
- Vol of the Decade - in the final week of December, we'll take a look at those who gave their all for Tennessee in the last ten years, and ask the community to decide which individual should be crowned as Vol of the Decade.
The fun starts tomorrow.