Not-so-great moments in UT football history
by David Madison
Tennessee fans will cherish most of their memories about the Vols' undefeated '98 season and national championship. But for some fans, memories of football weekends in Knoxville are a bit blurry. In some cases, they're completely blacked out.
Luckily, the Knox County Sheriff's Department stores all arrest reports made before and after Vols games. Think of the files as law enforcement's Vols-mania scrapbooka collection of not so great, but notable moments from UT's phenomenal, 13-0 season.
Most Disappointedand Now Fully SuperstitiousFan
Just before kick-off at the start of the Kentucky game, 36-year-old Roger Alan Bible began stumbling toward Neyland Stadium. "During a routine pat down," notes the arrest report, "this officer removed from Mr. Bible's right front jeans pocket a small wooden casket containing green plant material that this officer believes to be marijuana."
At which Neyland Stadium gate was Mr. Bible busted? No. 13.
Most Original Excuse for Driving While Intoxicated
In the small hours of the morning after the Kentucky game, an impaired motorist was spotted by a Knox County Sheriff's deputy on Gray-Hendrix Road. According to the deputy's report, the motorist, "stopped in the middle of the road before slowly driving off into his yard and then parking at a 90 degree angle in his driveway."
After searching the DUI suspect, the officer found "a partially consumed bottle of tequila" and four shot glasses in the driver's coat pocket. Cold busted, the driver and his passenger pleaded with the officer, assuring the deputy that they had not driven on any "main roads" on their way home.
By coincidence, in arrest reports filed before and after the Kentucky game, the word "stupor" appears more than any other football weekend. That weekend also happened to be the last time UT and KU would exchange the legendary beer barrel game trophy. The tradition came to a tragic end following the death of a Kentucky player and an Eastern Kentucky University student who were killed in a drunk driving accident a week before KU's Nov. 21 loss to UT.
Most Frustrating Moments in Post-Game, Drunk Driving History
Little can stop a determined drunk from getting behind the wheel, but at least twice last season, drivers were miraculously prevented from hitting the road impaired. The first incident occurred the night of the Florida game when a 28-year-old male sat down in the driver's seat of someone else's car and tried to start it with his own keys.
A month later, just before sunrise on the Sunday following the UAB game, the owner of a '92 Nissan Maxima found himself boxed in between a "block building" and a Camaro. The driver slammed into both the building and the Camaro before officers arrived on the scene near the corner of 11th and Clinch.
One DUI defendant, who made it out on the road but didn't get far from the stadium after the Alabama game, was apprehended at the corner of 18th and Cumberland. The 23-year-old UT student from Nashville stepped out of his car and attempted to pass a field sobriety test. However, the test proved too demanding and the student began pleading with officers, saying, "I can't do any more of this." According to the arrest report, the man then passed out and urinated on himself.
Most Popular Places to Sleep Off Game Day Indulgences
A booth at Subway on Cumberland.
A booth at Krystal on Cumberland.
The parking garage at the corner of 19th and Clinch.
The lawn near Melrose Place on the UT campus.
Most State Spirit
Following the Alabama game, two men grappled over an Alabama state flag in the back of a pickup truck. While in traffic on Cumberland, one man knocked the other out of the truck. Playing king of the pickup may be a popular pastime in Alabama, but in Knoxville, it can get you arrested. After searching the flag holder/truck bed king, state spirit wasn't all officers found. Inside a pack of smokes, states the arrest report, there was a half-smoked marijuana cigarette.
Most Obnoxious Drug-Using Fan
During the Arkansas game, a 26-year-old male was pulled from the stands by officers who received complaints about a fan "yelling and cursing." Then, when the fan was searched, officers found enough goodies to fill Hunter S. Thompson's lunch box: a bag of grass, a bong, a blue tube of white powder, and one packet of rolling papers.
Most Popular Phrase Used by Officers to Describe Arrested Fans
Most Inappropriate Place for Fans to Relieve Themselves
The storage room sink at Rocky Top book store and souvenir shop.
The Second Most Original Excuse for Driving Drunk
"I only had two pitchers."