Rohe Track Era All About Us!

Compiled by Tom Scott 07/28/2013

Another “psyche-out” story from Paul Scott’s 1967 thesis

As they breezed through the rest of the season, all the Volunteers knew that the LSU meet would be the big challenge. Perennial champion Louisiana State had won the SEC championship easily the previous year and all their big guns were back to win another championship. This was the big meet of 1964 – the winner would have a psychological advantage the following weekend at the SEC meet.

Tennessee flew into the domain of the Bengal Tigers and they were overawed by the attention given to the meet. The Baton Rouge newspaper devoted two entire pages to the meet and everyone was expecting to see orange blood.

Possibly the Vols were on the verge of being psyched out before the meet even started, but Tennessee’s Jerry Householder, a brilliant civil engineering student and track letterman, reversed the trend. Naturally easy going and popular, Householder was the center of attention when LSU’s great weight man, Ron Hernandez, walked up and asked, “Hey, how did you guys get down here – on the bus?” With a wide grin Householder replied, “No, we flew down. We always fly to our meets. Don’t you?” The LSU members of the group, long accustomed to a second class citizenship, left in awe of a school that had such a program that they would fly to all their meets.

Tom Scott, 1962-64

I remember having to leave as soon as the 1963 SEC track meet was over to get back to Knoxville. Most of the team spent the night in Birmingham, but I was taking an ecology class where a major part of the grade was an all-day field trip to the Great Smoky Mountains to view the changes in flora and fauna at every 1000-foot level. After traveling all night getting home, those hikes through the mountains that day may have been exciting, intellectually, but were more torture than any of the Rohe workouts.