"I've made-up my mind and I don't expect to ever look back. I'm going to stay at the University of Tennessee."
Back in March 1997, those words from Peyton Manning brought UT fans to their feet and created a wave of cheers across Rocky Top.
Ahead of his announcement, everyone from fans to sports analysts vocalized their own predictions for Manning's decision. The Vols quarterback later admitted that he made the decision the night before the announcement and only told a select few people. That short list included then Head Football Coach Phil Fulmer.
Had Manning turned pro, he might have been the first player chosen in the draft. The New York Jets had the first pick.
Those against the decision cited possible career-ending injuries Manning could have sustained during his final year at UT. However, he silenced those critics after he was chosen by the Indianapolis Colts with the first overall pick in the 1998 NFL draft. The rest, is NFL history.
Peyton Manning's decision to stay at the University of Tennessee proved to be historic day in both UT and college football history. It's also one of your "Straight from the Heart" Moments.