To boost the lagging popularity of the UT Athletic Department, NASCAR will be added to the lineup of sports offerings in 2004. UT Athletics states that football remains popular but a measurable decrease exists regarding student involvement with volleyball, lacrosse, ballroom dancing, and calf-roping.
Renovations to Tom Black Track will begin in the summer of 2003 and the new NASCAR track will officially open in Spring 2004. For students unable to drive high speed vehicles for various reasons (i.e. myopia, panic attacks, jitters) a parallel course by the name of ‘Pit Crew Management’ will be made available.
All athletic programs at UT are self-supporting and state funds will be not be utilized by the new NASCAR program. Multiple scholarships will be made available at trade schools throughout Tennessee.