UT Knoxville, ’75
“All I needed was an opportunity,” says Condredge Holloway.
And UT Knoxville provided it.
Holloway arrived on campus in 1971 as a three-sport phenomenon from Huntsville, Alabama. He excelled in football, basketball and baseball. He was offered a baseball contract with the MLB Montreal Expos at age 16.
At the time, however, Holloway’s parents were determined that he would attend college.
“Back in my day, the rules were that you couldn’t play college (sports) if you signed a pro baseball contract,” Holloway recalls. “It was important for me and my parents that I go to college. Otherwise, I might not ever have picked up a football here because my initial focus was on baseball.”
Football programs across the country had recruited Holloway, but in his home state, then-Gov. George Wallace told Coach Paul “Bear” Bryant that the University of Alabama wasn’t ready for a black quarterback.
But Holloway was more than ready, and UT Coach Bill Battle knew it. Holloway became the first black quarterback to play in the Southeastern Conference, starting at UT for three seasons (freshmen were not eligible to play varsity) and went 25-9-2 as a starter. He was named All-SEC QB in 1973.
As impressive as his numerous memorable moments and highlights were in his career, Holloway says they don’t compare to his family.
“My wife and my kids are the most important things in my life. I love being a dad,” he says. “It’s important to teach your kids how to handle mistakes and to let them see you make a few and see how you handle them. Otherwise, they won’t learn that skill.”
And those are lessons he still imparts in his current role as assistant athletic director at UT Knoxville.
Part of the Tennessee Alumnus‘ 100 Distinguished Alumni feature.