About Us


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In less than two short years, Rocky Top Insider has become a best-of-breed digital destination where Tennessee fans find the most comprehensive and timely information about UT sports across multiple media platforms. With over 50 years of collective experience in virtually every facet of media, the RTI team provides a robust, year-round offering of Big Orange content through our website, radio show (RTI Radio; 4-6 pm ET, 1180 AM), social media (@rockytopinsider on Twitter) and via videos produced at our digital studios.

Our reach across Vol Nation is massive. But our most valuable assets are the people who make it all work.

Leading RTI Radio on Monday and Tuesday is a man who needs little introduction to Vol Nation: VFL Erik Ainge. Ainge played quarterback for the Vols from 2004-07 before going on to a three-year career with the New York Jets. Ainge, who hosted his own morning show on Tennessee Sports Radio from 2011-14, is equally adept behind a microphone as he was behind center. He brings one of the most humorous, yet knowledgable, approaches to radio and is constantly finding new ways to creatively inform and entertain RTI Radio’s listeners. You’ll also find his expertise on our site as he contributes to our weekly mailbag, Insider Mailing.

Daniel Lewis is our lead writer, editor and an important part of RTI Radio. He spent two years covering the UT beat for Nooga.com where he was the most widely read writer on the entire staff. You also, perhaps, have read him on CBSSports.com, the Knoxville News Sentinel or one of the several other outlets he’s contributed to in the past. Over the past few years he’s become synonymous with fast, fair and thorough UT coverage that has been read by millions of users on RTI. Daniel also heads up RTI’s social media accounts, edits and leads a team of writing contributors and hosts RTI Radio every Wednesday-Friday as well as regularly co-hosting on Monday and Tuesday.

Nathanael Rutherford joined RTI in late 2015 and produces RTI Radio on a daily basis in addition to regularly appearing on the show Wednesday-Friday. He is also a regular contributor to the site, bringing his experience gleaned from covering the Vols for the past couple of seasons for multiple outlets to RTI.

Orchestrating all the moving parts of the company is RTI co-founder, John Cave Osborne. Before founding RTI, you may have known him as the man who breathed life into Tennessee Sports Radio’s Website – completely rebuilding it, quadrupling its reach and accounting for almost half of its traffic during the 2013 season. And that doesn’t even count his YouTube efforts which have gained national attention. When it comes to Vol Nation, John has carved a quirky spot that’s all his own. He’ll make appearances on RTI Radio and contribute thoughtful and witty pieces or videos to the site, all the while handling much of the business and behind-the-scenes elements of RTI.

Then there’s John’s partner in crime, co-founder Bob Baskerville. When it comes to media, this is an executive that’s been there, done that. He was one of the founding executives that launched a little network called HGTV. Perhaps you’ve heard of it. He also served as the president of the DIYNetwork for seven years. Did we mention that he basically invented the simulcast of a radio show for television as Head of Production at E! Network when he worked with Howard Stern? These days, Bob is one of the senior leaders in the Digital Technology group at Scripps Networks Interactive, home to power brands like Food Network, HGTV and the Travel Channel. Like John, he’ll leave the daily reporting to the actual reporters, but behind the scenes, Bob will pull from his vast media experience to help guide the RTI team as it negotiates its multi-media approach. 

And that’s not all. Rocky Top Insider will also tap into credentialed experts in various UT sports, including former players, to lend their analysis, “insider” status, and unique perspective on what’s happening. But we’re not merely going to flood you with a world of dry statistical information. Sure, we’ll have just as much skinny as the next guy, but we’ll also entertain along the way.

And, again, this exhaustive and entertaining brand of all things Orange will be available across multiple media platforms, as we’ve added live radio (4-6 p.m. ET on weekdays on 1180 AM) and HD video coverage is becoming a big part of what we do. All our content, regardless of medium, will be created from RTI’s digital studios in Alcoa and will be easily accessible at your computer. On the go? Fantastic. Bust out your mobile and download the RTI app. We’re as portable as it gets.

Never before in this region has a Digital Sports Channel offered so much at one location! From the Orange and White Game to National Signing Day to March Madness, we’ll provide a service you can use to celebrate, commiserate, inform, and analyze. Your search for the best, most in-depth and most entertaining UT Sports information — available however you want it and whenever you want it — is over. You found us.

Welcome to Rocky Top Insider!