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Constructing the Vols’ Super Team

Defensive Line

Reggie White

Reggie White is one of the greatest Vols to ever play regardless of position. And up until the 2016 season, he was the Vols’ all-time leader in sacks. But more about that later. White was one of the most talented defenders and overall players in Tennessee history. He still holds the record for most sacks in a season for Tennessee with 15, and he’s widely regarded as on of the best defensive linemen to ever play in the SEC. White also had a brilliant NFL career but sadly passed away in 2004 before he could see himself be inducted into the Hall of Fame.

Doug Atkins

There won’t be many players before the 1970s on this list, but when your name is in the Ring of Honor in Neyland Stadium and you have your number retired, you belong on this list. Doug Atkins played for the Vols in the early 1950s and was a part of the 1951 National Championship team. Atkins was an All-SEC selection his last two years with Tennessee. Atkins is considered by many to be one of the greatest defensive linemen in college football history. And that’s reflected by the numerous honors and accolades he received before his passing in 2015.

John Henderson

Although his counterpart, Albert Haynesworth, went on to have a more successful professional career, John Henderson wreaked havoc for the Vols at the college level. As a defensive tackle, Henderson managed to rack up a whopping 12 sacks in 2000, and that total still places him fourth all-time in Tennessee history for a single season. Henderson was one of the most disruptive defensive tackles in Tennessee history, and his 6-foot-7 290 pound frame made him one of the most physically imposing ones too.

Derek Barnett

Remember Reggie White’s sack record? Well, that’s now Derek Barnett’s after the 2016 season. Barnett surpassed White’s 32 career sacks last year with 13 sacks in his junior year, giving him a total of 33 in his Vol career of just three seasons. Barnett totaled at least 10 sacks in all three seasons with Tennessee, and his 52 career tackles for loss place him second only to Leonard Little’s 53 TFLs in a career. Barnett is one of the best and most talented Vols to don the orange and white of the new millennium.

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One Response

  1. I would have included Bob Suffridge at OL, Dewey Warren at QB, Jack Reynolds/Jackie Walker at LB and Curt Watson at RB but that’s just me.

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