AN OLYMPIC-QUALITY TRACK AND FIELD FACILITY

Tom Black Track At Laporte Stadium

Chuck Rohe and Tom Black’s effort to build an Olympic-quality track and field facility was one of the most significant contributions to the success of UT track & field. Opened in 1967, Tom Black Track, now Tom Black Track at LaPorte Stadium, immediately led to premier track events coming to Knoxville, when UT hosted the 1967 SEC Conference Track & Field Championships. From 1968 through 1971 Rohe brought Olympian athletes to Tom Black track including Ralph Boston, Bob Beamon, Marty Liquori, John Carlos, Erv Hall and Ralph Mann.

TOM BLACK TRACK

Chuck Rohe and Tom Black’s effort to build an Olympic-quality track and field facility was one of the most significant contributions to the success of UT track & field. Opened in 1967, Tom Black Track, now Tom Black Track at LaPorte Stadium, immediately led to premier track events coming to Knoxville, when UT hosted the 1967 SEC Conference Track & Field Championships. From 1968 through 1971 Rohe brought Olympian athletes to Tom Black track including Ralph Boston, Bob Beamon, Marty Liquori, John Carlos, Erv Hall and Ralph Mann.

With the help of a qualified group of Knoxville Track Club officials, UT gained nationwide exposure when they hosted the 1969 NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships. This in turn led to the strongest local and student fan support in UT track history, the grandstands being packed full.

The Site of National and SEC Competitions

1969 NCAA Track & Field Championships 1970 AAU Junior Olympics
1978 SEC Championships 1980 TAC Junior TF Championships
1982 TAC National TF Championships 1993 SEC Championships
1994 USA Championships 1994 USATF Youth Nationals
1995 NCAA Championships 2002 AAU Junior Olympics
2007 AAU Junior Olympics 2010 SEC Championships

Tom Black Track record holders tell you all you need to know about the caliber of competition in years to follow: Justin Gatlin, Rick Wohlhuter, Steve Scott, Todd Williams, Adam Nelson, Willie Gault, Dan O’Brien to name just a few. The national exposure and local support that Rohe and Tom Black Track provided was of great value to recruiting for many years to come.

The Chuck Rohe Track Era

In 1962 the University of Tennessee hired a young track coach, Chuck Rohe. The next nine years, along with the Stan Huntsman era to follow, began the most successful era of SEC track & field and cross-country dominance in the school’s history.

what a day!
Chuck Rohe