UT football players train with Knoxville police officers

UT football players train with Knoxville police officers

Posted:
Coach Butch Jones heard about the training and wanted to do it again. Coach Butch Jones heard about the training and wanted to do it again.
"We want [the players] to know they can always come to us," said Deputy Chief Gary Holliday. "We want [the players] to know they can always come to us," said Deputy Chief Gary Holliday.
"They learned team work and trust." said Vol for Life Coordinator Antone Davis. "They learned team work and trust." said Vol for Life Coordinator Antone Davis.

By STEPHANIE BEECKEN
6 News Reporter

KNOXVILLE (WATE) - The Tennessee football team got an unusual day of training last week. The Vols trained with Knoxville police officers, but it wasn't a day of lifting weights or tossing footballs.

Around 100 players went Tuesday to the Knoxville Police Department's Phil Keith Training Center.

It was day of building bonds with the officers and fellow teammates. There was a lot of excitement and some lessons learned along the way.

The players spent time rappelling from towers, riding in police cruisers and running from canines.

The KPD training day was organized by Vol for Life Coordinator Antone Davis helped set up the event.

"It's an opportunity for our players to go out visit with local law enforcement and train with them, and see what they do on a daily basis, how they protect us, how they do their jobs," said Davis,  a former All-America offensive tackle at Tennessee.

It was only the second time KPD officers have trained the football team. Coach Butch Jones heard about the training and wanted to do it again.

Seventeen officers trained the players. The players interacted with the canines, learned how the officers deal with hostage rescue situations, and rode with driving instructors on the emergency response drivers' course.

"It's appreciation for our police officers in our area here to protect us so it's great to come out here with them and see what they do and how they protect us," said UT football player Byron Moore.

According to Deputy Chief Gary Holliday, the goal is to build a relationship between the officers and the players. Holliday says the training day builds a mutual respect where players understand and respect the role of the officers.

"Those guys get a lot of extra attention that they may not want. They may have somebody messing with them and what can they do? We want them to know they can always come to us," said Deputy Chief Holliday.

Many of the training day activities focus on team building, lessons Davis says will be beneficial on the field.

"They learned team work and trust especially with the close quarters situation where the officers break into a room. It's tight, it's close quarters but they all rely on each other similar to the way our players rely on each other in a tough situation or a game situation," said Davis.

Davis says the Vol for Life program is designed to mentor players and prepare them for life after football.

About three of the players showed interest in becoming officers when their football career is over, Deputy Chief Holliday said.

Davis says they hope to have the players work with another agency like the police or fire department next year. He says the training is a challenging, fun and beneficial activity for the team.

Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and WATE. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.