Tennessee Honoring Legendary Linebacker Against South Carolina

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    Photo via Tennessee Athletics

    Tennessee is honoring legendary linebacker Al Wilson at next month’s South Carolina game, the team announced Thursday.

    The Vols and National Football Foundation Hall of Fame officials are recognizing Wilson for his induction into the College Football Hall of Fame.

    “I am so proud of Al Wilson being selected into the College Football Hall of Fame,” Former Tennessee head coach Phillip Fulmer said. “He is so deserving, not only for the passion and effort he played with but for his leadership as captain of our 1998 national championship team.

    “Al was the epitome of a competitor. He knew the importance of preparation to be great, and he influenced others to follow his lead during the offseason, spring practice, summer workouts and certainly through the fall of that wonderful 1998 season. He was the ultimate teammate and respected by everyone for his dedication, hard work, love of the game and physical play. He found a way to connect personally with everyone on the team on and off the field.”

    Wilson is one of 11 players and two coaches in the Hall of Fame’s 2021 class, voted on in January. Wilson joins noteworthy names like Tony Romo, C.J. Spiller, Bob Stoops and Carson Palmer in the 2021 class.

    Wilson is one of the most decorated players in Tennessee football history, recording 277 tackles, 11 sacks, eight forced fumbles and two interceptions in 42 games played.

    The Jackson, Tennessee native earned First Team All-SEC honors in 1997 and 1998. In 1998, Wilson earned First Team All-American honors while leading Tennessee to a national championship.

    Tennessee’s Oct. 9 matchup with South Carolina is a needed win for Josh Heupel’s football team. Under first year head coach Shane Beamer, the Gamecocks are 2-1 with a narrow victory over Eastern Carolina and a blowout loss at Georgia.

    Kickoff time and broadcast details for the week six matchup have not been announced.

    Ryan Schumpert is a senior at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville who has covered University of Tennessee athletics since the moment he stepped on campus. He just completed a three-year stint with the Daily Beacon, the last two of which as the Sports Editor. Ryan also spent last three years at Volquest providing strong Tennessee baseball coverage of Tony Vitello's resurgent program. While the bulk of Ryan's responsibilities involved beat coverage and writing, he also recorded podcasts for both the Beacon and Volquest. Did we leave out the part about Ryan interning for the Smokies? Ryan's work ethic, versatility, and strong writing skills are but three of the reasons why Vol Nation will be hearing from Ryan for years to come.