Neyland Stadium the football arena for the University of Tennessee Vols. I have had several opportunities to be inside this stadium in my life time. #NeylandStadium
First Type of Experience at Neyland Stadium … Fan
First off I got to go as a fan. I went while my mom was enrolled in college at UT. Those games I don’t recall who played, but I went with one of my mothers classmates took me. I also got to go to a game in 2005 with my daughter, Amber. We went to the Vanderbilt game that year. That was fun too!
Second Type of Experience at Neyland Stadium … Security
Secondly, I got to go to the all the home games in 1998, one of our National Champions year and the Vols were Undefeated. I got to go a security officer for the University of Tennessee Police Department (UTPD). I helped a Knox Count Reserve Officer pre-game for bus parking around to the baseball field. Then, at kick-off we had to go to the stadium. At the stadium, they paired me off with a retired UTPD officer. They told us both to stay out of trouble. So we stayed in the A/C first aid lodge area. We got to watch the game on TV. Walk around at times and such. We even had to tend to underage drinking and find out where they got their drinks from … Mostly Frat Row.
The one experience I won’t forget is the night I had to stay the night at Neyland Stadium. It was just after the Florida game in 1998, we beat them Gators. Everyone flooded the field and tore up the turf and the goal post. UTPD locked me inside, alone! So all night I had to walk around the whole stadium. I will say this, I know Neyland Stadium is huge, try being in it by yourself, it looks much bigger when no one else is inside it. I would walk toward the gates and people begged me to let them inside, the only thing is, I didn’t have a key. I was like sorry man, I don’t have any keys, I couldn’t even get out of this place, just like no one can get inside. I would walk around the field, I would go up to the very top and look over the side of the stadium to the Tennessee River. Boy did they tear up the football field, it was bad.
Third Type of Experience at Neyland Stadium … Media
Finally, I got to go as a member of the media. I got to be on the field taking pictures for the game for the paper I work for. That was really fun. The treat the media really well. If you are on the field taking pictures they have hot dogs and coke in the transfer room (where you can transfer the pictures previously taken to your work). They also give you a ticket to go up inside the Media skybox for a nice meal. I never had time to go up there, but according to what I heard they give you, it is almost what they would give the football players, I nice hearty meal. That was for The Knoxville Journal in 2004.
I got to go to a couple of the games for The Seymour Herald (2010 or so) and take some pictures. They have a new area for the media. They feed us well before the game and during half time. I enjoyed being a media then a bit more than before. The media room is very nice.
So I got to have several sides of being in Neyland Stadium. Fan Side, Security Side and Media Side. Of course there are several other sides of being in Neyland Stadium. What side of the experience do you have? Please share with me.
Check out the Vols Hand Signal: Give ’em the Vol!
Also check out Tid-Bits about the University of Tennessee.
A new side I hope to do
But with those experiences I have had. I was lost in the world. If I knew what I do now, I would have used that as opportunity to witness or share the Gospel to my fellow fans that I encountered. But, hind-sight, I know now to do it. Was a great place to plant seeds and do the harvest of God. I am working on a Gospel tract so I can hand out at games. I haven’t been to a game in awhile, but I hope to have a chance. I might even be able to work a few games as an usher too. Who knows.
Also if you are a Christian and a Vol fan and would maybe like to give out some tracts at the game, let me know.
Do you use sporting vents to witness and/or to hand out gospel tracts?
If so, I would like to hear about your experience.
First published September 21, 2013. Last updated or republished September 5, 2018.
My name is Steve Patterson and I am saved through the blood of Jesus Christ. I have been blogging at Courageous Christian Father since 2012, however, I have been blogging since around 2004. I listen to nothing but Christian Music. I work as a graphic designer.