Hall of Fame - Inductee Detail

Bowden Wyatt

Bowden Wyatt


  • Position: End
  • School: Tennessee
  • High School: Kingston, TN (Kingston HS)
  • Years: 1936-1938
  • Inducted: 1972
  • Place of Birth: Kingston, TN
  • Date of Birth: Oct 04, 1917
  • Place of Death: Kingston, TN
  • Date of Death: Jan 21, 1969
  • Jersey Number: 37
  • Height: 6-0
  • Weight: 182

Member Biography

Bowden Wyatt was everything coach General Bob Neyland wanted in a player at Tennessee. He was dedicated, hard- working and intelligent - all the characteristics Neyland admired. Wyatt was a high school fullback. General Neyland, as Tennessee coach, made him an end. Wyatt stood 6-1, weighed 190, was a strong blocker, good receiver, and hard tackler. He started every game for three years as Tennessee went 23-5-3. In 1938, he made All-America and captained a team that went 11-0 and beat Oklahoma in the Orange Bowl. It was Tennessee's first bowl game. Wyatt was assistant coach at Mississippi State from 1939-41 and 1946. (He was a lieutenant in the Navy in World War II.) He was the head coach at Wyoming from 1947-52 and Arkansas from 1953-54. Neyland had become Tennessee's director of athletics and he brought Wyatt back as head coach. Wyatt held that position eight years, 1955-62. He ended his coaching career as an assistant at Oklahoma State in 1964-65. Wyatt's 16-year totals as head coach were 99-56-5. He won four league championships--at Wyoming in the Skyline (1949-50), Arkansas in the Southwest (1954), and Tennessee in the Southeastern (1956). His 1956 Tennessee team went 10-1 and Wyatt was the nation's Coach of the Year. Wyatt was born Oct. 4, 1917, in Kingston, Tennessee. He died of viral pneumonia on Jan. 21, 1969 at age 51. He was elected to the College Football Hall of Fame a second time--this time as a coach in 1997.