Eugene Oliver’s entrance to organized sports began in the eighth grade at Shook Elementary School where he played basketball. He played center on a team that had an undefeated record during regular season and tournament play.
Oliver played four years of basketball and football at GCHS. He was the alternate captain of the basketball team his junior year and captain of the basketball and football team his senior year. He was a team member of the 1953 to 1954 football team that won the Tennessee Valley Conference championship. He played end for three years and fullback his senior year. This year was different from the usual team play, in that he called the plays and cadence from the fullback position.
Oliver was the vice-president of the senior class and served two terms on the student council, one as president. During his senior year, he was sergeant-at-arms of the GClub, and received the Sportsmanship award and the Most School Spirit award. He was a member of several school clubs.
Oliver was recruited and offered scholarships to play football for several colleges. He chose Tennessee Tech, where he played football for four years and was a starting end on the team for three years. He was selected to the all mid-state college football team his sophomore year and was on the teams that won three OVC championships from 1957 to 1960. This feat has never been done again at TTU. He played in the Tangerine Bowl in Orlando, Florida, in 1961.
Oliver was one of the captains on the TTU 1960 team. He received a B.S. degree in education from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga after spending three-plus years at TTU.
Congratulations to Oliver for his selection as a 2016 inductee of the GCHS Sports Hall of Fame.