Former Vol Chuck Smith chips in for new facility

Chuck Smith returned to Knoxville to make a charitable donation to his alma mater for renovations that will take place on the Neyland-Thompson Sports Complex in a few months.

Smith's gift will be used to create the Chuck Smith Player's Lounge in the current Neyland-Thompson Complex when a renovation and expansion project begins on that facility this winter. The expansion of the sports complex will include an expansion of the indoor football practice to a full 100 yard field.

"Chuck Smith has stepped forward to make a gift to help make our football program even better," Dickey said. "He certainly made his impact felt while he was here and, 10 years later, he's continuing to have a major impact on our program."

Smith, a native of Athens, Ga., played for the Vols in 1990 and 1991 after a stint at Northeastern Oklahoma Junior College in Miami, Okla. He had nine sacks in his senior season of 1991. He was a member of the Vols' 1990 SEC championship team.

"This is something I am proud to do for the University of Tennessee and the football program," Smith said. "I remember well my time at the University and wanted to help the program continue to prosper. The players lounge will give our student-athletes a dedicated place to get together and build team relationships during breaks between class and practice and other responsibilities."

After his UT days, Smith was a second round choice of the Atlanta Falcons in the 1992 NFL Draft. He helped lead the way for the Falcons to the NFC crown and berth in Super Bowl XXXIII in 1999. While with the Falcons, he was a team captain, was selected the Greatest Falcon Lineman Ever and was named an "Unsung Hero" by the National Football League. He was named a "Howie Long Tough Guy" in 1998.

Smith now lives in Duluth, Ga., with his wife, Mynique, and children Giavani and Chuck IV. He currently works with WSB-TV in Atlanta as a sportscaster on the morning show. He has appeared on Sports Final on WBS and is a guest host on CNN Talkback Live. He's also on the "SEC Report" on Fox SportSouth each Thursday evening.

The Chuck Smith Players Lounge is part of a comprehensive plan for new, renovated and expanded facilities benefiting 17 of UT's 20 men's and women's intercollegiate sports.

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