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The University of Tennessee is bringing down the house (of Robert Neyland)

Photo: University Archives

The house that General Robert Neyland built is coming down. Sorry, that sentence probably scared most Vol fans. Don’t worry, Neyland Stadium isn’t going anywhere. I don’t think General Neyland built the house on 2111 Terrace Ave., just lived there for a couple of years in the 1920s when he was the coached for the Tennessee Volunteers. Vol fans are familiar with the success General Neyland had. He finished his head coaching career with a record of 173-31-12 and six undefeated seasons, four national championships, two SoCon Championships and five SEC Championships complement the greatness that was General Robert Neyland. Neyland wasn’t the only successful man to live in 211 Terrace Ave., however.

Later on, Russell Briscoe called the big white house that stands out in a row of brick houses his home. Briscoe is known for his oil paintings. He produced some 75 known paintings and was even a successful businessman, nicknamked “Mr. Knoxville,” in 1963.

Due to the deteriorating condition of the house, the university wants to cut ties to the unrepairable building and demolish it. That will open up land for the university to continue their takeover of Terrace Avenue. The demolition is scheduled to take place at some point in the spring.

Here’s a thought for the university: instead of tearing down such a historical house, lets pause and remember the greatness that house produced. General Neyland is arguably the best football coach in Tennessee history, while Russell Briscoe was a huge factor and widely successful man to Knoxville. Let’s make it a prerequisite that it is mandatory for head football coaches at Tennessee to live in that house. Even just a one-night sleepover. Maybe that can get this football program back on track, and Jeremy Pruitt can become the first former assistant to beat Nick Saban.

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