Doug Mathews, a longtime football personality in middle Tennessee, has spent more than a dozen years behind the microphone of successful shows focused on college football and the University of Tennessee.
Mathews spent ten seasons as Running Backs Coach and Defensive Coordinator for the University of Tennessee from 1980 to 1989. Mathews credited Bear Bryant and Bud Wilkinson as coaches who influenced the way he coached his players during the years he worked inside the game.
No one had as much of an effect as Virginia Tech head coach Bill Dooley. Mathews says Dooley furnished him with his first opportunity as an offensive coach and provided him with valuable information within the I-formation offense.
Mathews’ coaching career began in 1972 when he coached defensive backs at Northeast Louisiana. He moved to Weber State for three seasons where he served as defensive coordinator. In 1976, Mathews made to move to Louisville where he coached three seasons before departing for Virginia Tech in 1979. As a Hokies assistant, he coached running backs under the legendary Dooley.
In 1991, Mathews retired from coaching to spend more time with his family. That same year Mathews and his wife, Pat, founded Doug Mathews Team Sports in Nashville. They ran the successful business venture for 21 years before their two sons, Tate and Nick, began operating Mathews Team Sports, in Franklin in 2012.
The son of a newspaper publisher, Mathews was born and raised in Picher, Oklahoma. He starred in three sports in high school, before signing a scholarship to play football at Northeastern Oklahoma A&M. While at NEO, Mathews earned a selection on the All–American team as well being named the National Junior College Player of the Year in 1967.
As a sophomore he helped lead Coach Chuck Bowman’s team to the 1967 NJCAA National Championship with a 9-1 overall record. During the championship game, Mathews had a 76 yard punt return for a touchdown while rushing for 97 yards on 22 carries and catching six passes for 48 yards.
Those numbers led to Mathews 2008 induction into the Northeastern Oklahoma A&M’s Sports Hall of Fame.
Following his graduation from A&M, Mathews transferred to Vanderbilt, where he handled tailback and return duties. He led the Southeastern Conference in rushing during his senior year in 1969 with 849 yards, becoming the only Commodore to lead the conference in rushing. This included a 214-yard performance against Tulane. His mark of 168 kickoff return yards in one game against Florida in 1969 stood as a Vanderbilt record until 2002.
His 1,067 all-purpose yards ranked second in the SEC for the 1969 season.