Why is the Tennessee fan base so passionate about their sports teams?
By: John Dunn
The All Vol Call in Show
Those darn Tennessee fans -- always screaming too loud, cheering too hard, and going too crazy. Why are they like that? They haven't had a football team that contended for a national title since 1998. Their men's basketball team has never advanced past the Elite 8. The Lady Vols haven't won anything meaningful since the legendary Pat Summitt was coaching. The baseball and softball teams seem to be good every year, but have never won the national championship. So, why are these people so crazy about their teams?
The University of Tennessee's fans are some of the most passionate in the nation, and that is absolutely unquestionable. If you needed any clarification, re-watch the Ole Miss vs. Tennessee football game from the 2021 football season. National sports media pundits absolutely blasted the Tennessee fan base for the reaction received in Neyland Stadium following the hose-job by the officiating crew. But, these folks have zero clue why the Tennessee fan base is the way they are.
The Tennessee Volunteers represent the people of Tennessee, and more specifically, the people of East Tennessee. The Appalachian mountains in East Tennessee are steeped with history that dates back to the very birth of America; filled with folks that immigrated from Ireland, Scotland, and other parts of Europe.
The are the same folks that had no clue that the Great Depression was even taking place, because they knew how to live off the land, the same folks who had nothing to their name except for what they worked for, men and women that worked from sun-up to sun-down to ensure that fields were plowed, seeds were planted, and families were warm and safe inside of hand-built homes.
The very name "Volunteers" is a testament to the hard-working, always ready, unrelenting nature of the people of the great state of Tennessee.
Tennesseans know what hard work means, and they expect that to translate to the university sports teams as well. For decades upon decades, the Vols and Lady Vols were feared in all sports. From football to swim, Tennessee has historically dominated in each respective sport -- but it's been a while. So, why do people get so worked-up over these games?
The answer is easy: because they love the University of Tennessee. Far too often, you hear of "fan" bases only speaking up when their team is at the top. However, that is not the case with the Tennessee fan base. The Volunteer faithful are just that -- faithful. It doesn't matter if the football team loses every game in a season, although you are definitely going to be hearing about it, they are still going to show up and support the guys and gals in orange.
No matter what, the people of Tennessee are going to show up and show out. It goes far beyond the field, court, and track. These people bleed orange, and they are not afraid to let you know it.
The SEC motto has become "it just means more," but that is truly the case amongst the Tennessee fan base.
You will never find a more dedicated, passionate, and amazing fan base as the fans of the University of Tennessee. Period.