UT Athletics sticks with chalkboard tradition to track scores

Sept. 1, 2016: UT Athletics still uses a chalkboard in the press box to keep track of scores of other games of interest.

In an age of growing technology, there’s one thing in the press box at Neyland Stadium that has remained constant.

The University of Tennessee’s Media Relations Department uses a chalkboard to track scores of interest from other football games around the country.

“It’s a fun thing to do and provides a lot of information,” said Bud Ford, former UT Media Relations director.

Before they had cell phones and computers, there was one person in the press box who was a score phone operator, Ford said.

 “He would call each of the SEC schools and other sources and get these scores and he would write them up on the board,” he said.

Today, it’s a tradition that hasn’t stopped.  

“I started here in Tennessee in 1966, and this board was here before I started and we’ve just carried it on through,” Ford said. “It’s unique to have and we just continued to do it.”

The chalkboard is something that has carried through all the press boxes that Tennessee has had.

“There’s been three or four renditions of our press box through the years,” Ford said. “It’s part of the tradition, just a small piece you put together and all those go together to make a big football game.”

It’s a tradition he hopes will continue for years to come.

“It will probably stay and there will be someone with chalk writing up the scores there will still be people looking at it,” Ford said. 

(© 2016 WBIR)


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