Knoxville, Tenn. (WVLT)-- Michael Patrick has been looking through the lens of his camera for a long time now. The recently retired Knoxville News Sentinel veteran spent some 40 years capturing those special moments in time that Vol fans will never forget. Michael says, "there have been a lot of times, and some of them the craziest things I have ever shot have been inside Neyland Stadium.
Like the time the Johnny majors and the Vols defeated Bear Bryant and the Crimson Tide, Patrick says, "that was back when the cops would say, we're not letting them on the field. Of course now my standard joke with all of them now is you do understand there's no way you can stop them."
Now before the days of digital there was film, and that presented a whole new challenge for Patrick who adds, "we would each shoot about ten rolls of film. so we would have a runner who would go around at the quarters and pick up film from the three of us. then he would run out the tunnel, out of Neyland stadium and down by the railroad tracks."
Throughout his career Michael has focused in on the famous and the infamous. How about his pic prior to the Battle At Bristol of a Tennessee fan chillin' in a kiddie pool wearing nothing but a speedo. The shot was was about as amusing as it gets even receiving National attention says Michael, "it did very well and i think i was told it was SportsCenter. they put it up as my tweet."
This past January 4th was the 20th anniversary of special night in Tennessee football history and right there front and center was Michael Patrick securing the shot all of East Tennessee would see first in the morning in the newspaper. Making it all happen though was an all together different story according to Patrick, "I had 12 minutes from the time the game ended, they had to have a picture in Knoxville because they were holding the press."
Coach Phillip Fulmer was front and center in that shot as was his predecessor in another famous Patrick picture. Johnny Majors meeting with Bear Bryant after beating the Tide. Majors rode in on his players shoulders, a place he didn't want to be says Patrick, a lot of people call it the iconic picture of Tennessee football, which i'm happy that they do that. i have spoken with coach majors and he said that's one of my regrets is that I didn't get off those shoulders to get down and talk to coach Bryant"
Below is a photo gallery of some of my favorite Michael Patrick pictures from over the years!