June 6, 2011
Tennessee coaching legend Gen. Robert R. Neyland was one of six inductees into the Southern Conference Hall of Fame last month in Charleston, S.C.
The ceremony marked the conference's third induction class of former athletes, coaches and special contributors. Neyland, who coached at Tennessee from 1926-52, was honored for his contributions to the Southern Conference when Tennessee was a member of that league prior to the formation of the Southeastern Conference in 1933.
Neyland compiled an overall record of 173-31-2 as head coach of the Volunteers, posting a record of 61-2-5 from 1926-32 that included a Southern Conference mark of 41-2-5. Tennessee won a share of the conference title in 1927 and 1932. Neyland coached the Volunteers to four national titles and was named to the College Football Hall of Fame in 1956. Tennessee's Shields-Watkins Field was renamed Neyland Stadium in 1962, the year Neyland died at the age of 70.
Student-athletes who competed for a minimum of two seasons in the Southern Conference were eligible for consideration, along with coaches and administrators who spent at least five years in the league. A pool of over 250 candidates from the conference's current and former member institutions were nominated for consideration. The pool of former student-athletes, coaches and administrators was cut down to 40 individuals who comprised the final ballot. A voting panel of 20 media members and league administrators made the selection of the induction class.