One man spent his entire career at The Jackson Sun while another spent more than 40 years running the sports department at The Greeneville Sun. And the third member of the 2019 Hall of Fame Class for the Tennessee Sports Writers Association started working at The Tennessean as a teenager and has never left. Dan Morris, the late Tiny Day and Mike Organ are the newest members of the TSWA Hall of Fame, president Tom Kreager announced Tuesday. The trio will be inducted July 11 in a ceremony at Cumberland University in Lebanon.
Morris is a native of Ashland City and started as a sports writer at The Jackson Sun in July 1974 at the age of 21. But Morris already had started working at the Sun while at Tennessee Martin. He married in June 1982 and never left Jackson. Morris was sports writer and sports editor covering youth, high school and college sports. He also covered Al Geiberger shooting a PGA-record 59 in Memphis in 1977 and the 1979 Super Bowl in Miami when Jackson’s Ed “Too Tall” Jones played for Dallas.
He covered amateur boxing along with two World Series involving the St. Louis Cardinals, 19 college football bowl games, 21 national tournaments, Memphis basketball and University of Tennessee football games. He also covered Bear Bryant’s final game as Alabama’s football coach in 1982, a 21-15 win over Illinois in the Memphis Liberty Bowl. Morris retired in 2012, sat out a year and then returned to the Sun in 2013 writing columns and features before finally leaving the paper for good in 2016.
Organ started at The Tennessean in 1975 as a teenager answering phones and running copy on weekends in the sports department and keeping stats at high school football games. He became an intern in his final semester at Middle Tennessee State in 1985, joining the sports department full-time two days after graduating and has spent 33 years with the newspaper. He has been the beat writer for high school sports (1986-88), the Ohio Valley Conference/Middle Tennessee State (1989-90), high school sports editor (1991-92), Vanderbilt beat writer (1993-2002), the Southeastern Conference (2003-04), area colleges (2009-present), sports media critic (2003-06) and Nashville Sounds (2005-2009) along with covering golf, tennis, auto racing, outdoors (2000-present) and the Nashville Predators (2009-10, 12-14).
He added a weekly column in 2013 and also is director of The Tennessean/Metro Parks Schooldays Golf Tournament, the longest running golf tournament in the state. He won Best of Gannett awards for "Beat Coverage" and "Breaking News" during his time covering Vanderbilt. He also was the TSWA’s Outdoors Writer of the Year in 2017.
Organ currently serves on the leadership board for the Greater Nashville Fellowship of Christian Athletes and is also on the National Football Foundation Middle Tennessee Chapter and College Football Hall of Fame executive board, the board of directors for the Nashville Old Timers Baseball Association and is co-founder and chairman of the DuPont High School Sports Hall of Fame. He was inducted into the Metro Football Coaches Hall of Fame in 2014 and also served on the Nashville Sports Council’s selection committee.
Day started overseeing the Sun’s sports section in the late 1940s, and he was in charge until August 1990 when he died of a heart attack in the press box at Greeneville High School while covering a high school football jamboree. He already is in the Northeast Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame and Greeneville Recreation Hall of Fame.