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UT Martin students return from Super Bowl 51


Contact 1: Erin Chesnut


MARTIN, Tenn. – Nine students and two faculty members from the University of Tennessee at Martin worked behind-the-scenes at Super Bowl 51 in Houston, Texas. This is the fourth consecutive year UT Martin has been represented at the event, and this year the university was one of only two permitted to send students.

Participants worked hospitality with visiting players and helped them stay on schedule for autograph signings and other appearances. The group was also able to work the New England Patriots’ after-party celebrating their 34-28 victory over the Atlanta Falcons.

“This experience went above and beyond what I thought it was going to be,” said Jakeb Wylie, of Kenton. “I was able to work a couple of shifts at Volunteer Experience, and I had a blast being able to contribute to the excitement of all the fans. But the experience on game day, from escorting to working the Patriots’ post-party was like no other experience I have ever had. I was also able to work with On Location Experience and the NFL to help make Super Bowl 51 a success, and being able to say that is pretty remarkable. I can only hope that other students who have the opportunity to go on this trip in the future take full advantage and enjoy the historic experience.”

The students worked a 15-hour day on Super Bowl Sunday and ran into a few obstacles, but were able to overcome the challenges and make sure their visiting players got where they needed to go.

“The main thing I learned from this experience was that not everything is as it seems. Many different people are responsible for anything and everything that goes on during the biggest game of the year,” said Jake Rogers, of Dresden. “You have to work through adversity during a big event. I have learned many lessons from this experience, but the main thing is that I will always expect the unexpected.”

Dr. Dexter Davis, associate professor of sport business, has a longstanding relationship with the National Football League and is able to accompany a group of UT Martin students to the game each year. Students are chosen largely from the sport business program and undergo a rigorous application and interview process before being selected to participate.

For more information, contact Davis at 731-881-7369 or by email at


PHOTO ID: Pictured outside the Houston Toyota Center are (l-r) Houston Downy, of Pegram; Shuler Cornett, of Winchester; Amia McNeil, of Collierville; Courtney Caton, of Huntingdon; Colton Daugherty, of Nunnelly; Elizabeth Francisco, of Gleason; Jakeb Wylie, of Kenton; Rebecca Lund, of Martin; Jake Rogers, of Dresden; Dr. Dexter Davis, UT Martin associate professor of sport business; and Josh Greer, instructor, UT Martin Department of Health and Human Performance.

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