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Vols Jersey Countdown #85

June 7, 2013


Player Spotlight
Lester McClain
Wide Receiver (1968-70)

A wide receiver for the Vols from 1968-70, Lester McClain became the first African-American to ever play in an SEC varsity football game for Tennessee when UT took on Georgia on Sept. 14, 1968. In his three years at Rocky Top, the Nashville native caught 70 passes for 1,003 yards and 10 touchdowns, while rushing 10 times for 123 yards and two scores. In 1970, McClain led the Big Orange in kickoff return yards, bringing eight kicks back a total of 168 yards. He was later selected in the ninth round of the 1971 NFL Draft by the Chicago Bears.

Why I Wore the Number
Lester McClain
Wide Receiver (1968-70)
"I had worn 88 out of high school. I think for one day I wore 83 and then I ended up getting told I was wearing 85. I don't know who really made that decision. I didn't really have any input on it. I was never particularly interested in a number as much as I was playing. It means a lot to me now and I have a lot of respect for it. Emmon Love is who I think I remember wearing it after me. I can't follow the tradition of who wore it later on, but it meant a lot."
Why I Wore the Number
Owen Sullinger
Wide Receiver (1996)
"My favorite thing about wearing number 85 was that it was an induction into an elite group that helped continue the tradition of Wide Receiver U. Playing wide receiver at Tennessee has continued to open doors all of these years even after my last collegiate game. Opportunities spanning from playing professionally to opportunities in the business world. It taught me valuable lessons that I try to pass down to future generations."
Why I Wore the Number
Buddy Fisher
Right End (1961-63)
"My number 85 was special to me because I was always in the back field and I had a lower number. Then I moved to the line and had to get a high number."
Fan Favorite 85s

Tweet @Vol_Football to tell us who your favorite Vol to wear the No. 85 is!


 

 

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