Neyland Scholarships

Several months before his death in 1962, Robert R. Neyland, then athletics director, started work on a plan that would provide for supporters of UT athletic programs to bolster the academic scholarships available at the institution. His goal was to establish four-year academic scholarships that could be used to recruit excellent students to the institution. Following his death, UT President Andrew D. Holt announced that a nationwide campaign to raise a minimum of $100,000 to establish such a scholarship endowment would be undertaken.

General Douglas MacArthur, along with 31 dignitaries from all parts of the United States served on the National Advisory Committee of the Robert R. Neyland Academic Scholarship Fund. When MacArthur was superintendent at West Point, he had appointed Neyland as a football coach. The committee served as advisor to the UT Development Council, sponsor of the fundraising campaign. On October 20, 1962, at halftime of the UT vs. Alabama football game, 165 women representing UT’s sororities collected more than $10,000 in a 15-minute period to launch the effort. Governor Ellington proclaimed the day as Neyland Day.

In the spring of 1963, it was decided that any proceeds from the spring Orange and White Game would go into the endowment. The first scholarships were awarded in 1963. The first two recipients were Melissa Ann Baker (Furrow) of Maryville (a UT golf player and former member of the UT Board of Trustees) and Robert English Allen of Columbia, Tennessee. By 2006 the endowment stood at more than $4 million.

Citation Information

The following information is provided for citations.

  • Title Neyland Scholarships
  • Author
  • Keywords Neyland Scholarships
  • Website Name Volopedia
  • Publisher University of Tennessee Libraries
  • URL
  • Access Date April 21, 2024
  • Original Published Date
  • Date of Last Update October 9, 2018