1983 -  Volunteers
(Authentic Reproduction)




Majors made a slight, but effective addition to the classic UT helmet by replacing the standard gray mask with white, and the new-look white masks have been preserved to this day. He also had his breakout season, a 9-3 finish that included a great 41-34 win over Bama and a Citrus Bowl victory against Maryland. All American Reggie White was the premiere defensive tackle in the nation and signed to play with the in-state USFL entry in Memphis before going on to a Hall Of Fame career in the NFL, one that matched his College Football Hall Of Fame performance at Tennessee. LB's Tole, Zander, and McKenzie revived the "LB U." reputation of Tennessee and the offense stepped up big with RB Johnnie Jones becoming the Vols' first 1000 yard rusher with 1116 for the year. Cockrell had weapons that replaced Gault in WR Tim McGee and Clyde Duncan who became the Cardinals first draft pick. Bill Mayo and Raliegh McKenzie, who proved versatile in a number of positions, bolstered the O-line.

Majors engineered a seven-victory season in 1984 but with the abundant talent, fans had some frustration that the Vols weren't a consistent power in the conference. Cockrell passed up his eligibility to sign a pro baseball contract and years later made it to the big leagues with Colorado. WR McGee was yet another number-one draft pick, going to the Bengals for eight seasons, the last coming after a one season "break" with the Redskins. LB Zander joined him in Cincinnati, playing productively from '85 through 1991. The McKenzies both played well after their UT careers also, Reggie backing the line for the Rams and Forty Niners and Raliegh, perhaps under-publicized in college, as a member of the Redskins' O-line Hogs as a center, guard, and tackle. The terrific kicking game specialists who came in together as freshmen left together after the '84 season, Reveiz to enjoy a lengthy career primarily with the Vikings and Colquitt to Seattle for a season. The team put it together in 1985, winning the SEC Championship with a great 35-7 Sugar Bowl finish over Miami and a 9-1-2 record. Majors almost matched that in '87 and lost only to Alabama in the 11-1 season of 1989 while coming back for another conference crown in 1990. Suffering a severe heart attack in '92, offensive coordinator and former Vols guard Phillip Fulmer ran the team and was officially named as head coach. Majors left for a second bout with Pitt that was not particularly successful while Fulmer became one of the most highly acclaimed coaches in the nation, winning the National Championship in 1998. Tennessee continues to challenge for national honors annually and like Peyton Manning, is a conduit to the NFL for many talented players.            
It didn't take long for Reggie White to make his mark at Tennessee after dominating at Howard High School in Chatanooga. As a sophomore White was the team's Most Improved Player and as a senior a consensus All American, the SEC Defensive MVP, an All Conference performer, and a finalist for the Lombardi Award. He finished his collegiate career with other-worldly statistics that were UT records including four sacks in one game, fifteen in one season, and thirty-two in his career. "The Minister Of Defense" was in fact, an ordained Baptist Minister and was named to the All SEC Team Of The Decade for the 1980's. White left Tennessee for the Memphis Showboats of the USFL and then had a thirteen-year career with the NFL Philadelphia Eagles and Green Bay Packers. He won honors as the NFL Defensive Rookie Of The Year, was a first-team All Pro ten times, and Pro Bowl member eleven times. In 121 games with the Eagles he recorded 124 sacks and then signed with the Packers as a free agent. His leadership qualities helped to turn that team around and make them a Super Bowl winner. He retired for one season and then returned for one more with the Carolina Panthers. When he finally walked off the field for the final time, he had been good enough to win honors as the defensive end on the NFL All Time Team Of The Decade for both the 1980's and '90's, and on the NFL 75th Anniversary Team.

If interested in any of these Miami helmets please click on the photos below.