UT Athletics, UTPD working to identify fans who threw trash on the field

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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — A spokesperson with the University of Tennessee said Sunday that UT Police are working to see if they can identify anyone who threw trash and other items on the field during the UT vs. Ole Miss football game Saturday night.

In a statement, UT Chancellor Donde Plowman further condemned the behavior from Vols fans during the final half-hour of the game.

There was a lot to celebrate in Neyland Stadium for the Ole Miss game. The atmosphere was electric. A sold-out crowd made a checkerboard that looked amazing, and our fans made Neyland loud. Our student-athletes worked hard to prepare for the game and left everything on the field. Unfortunately, bad behavior by a few fans, starting in the student section, jeopardized people’s safety, and ruined the experience for everyone. We will not tolerate this behavior, and it is not representative of the majority of Vol fans. I appreciate the many Volunteers who tried to get them to stop. And I appreciate our law enforcement who worked to protect people on the field and in the stadium. We are trying to identify people who threw things onto the field last night in order to hold them accountable. Further, Athletics is working with UTPD and the Division of Student Life to provide recommendations to me and Danny White related to preventing and deterring bad behavior in the stadium, particularly in our student section. I want our fans to be passionate in support of our student-athletes. That cannot mean resorting to bad behavior when things don’t go our way. We should create a safe, fun, and competitive environment in all our sports venues, for both teams, and we need our fans to help us do that.

UT Chancellor Donde Plowman

Tisha Benton, Vice Chancellor of Communications and Marketing added to the statement, saying, “UTPD is working to see if people can be identified. If the university is able to identify students, they will go through the student conduct process, and lose the ability to attend future games. Part of an event-management review will include the potential to add additional cameras focused on the student section to make identifying students easier in the future.”

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