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University of Tennessee coach Bruce Pearl took his basketball team to Europe in August. In the midst of playing games and practicing, the players learned about Pearl’s Jewish faith in a visit to the Terezin Concentration Camp.

Pearl will share more about Judaism and the trip at 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 30, in Cox Auditorium in Alumni Memorial Building.

“Coach Bruce Pearl Reflects on His Faith, Team and Recent Trip to Europe,” a Judaic studies lecture, is free and open to the public.

The team visited the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Austria during the 11-day tour. Terezin, outside of Prague, Czech Republic, was mostly used as a stopover for prisoners on their way to other concentration camps, but about 2,600 prisoners died there mainly due to the difficult living conditions, sickness and torture.

Pearl believed the tour of Terezin provided the team one of the most important lessons of the trip. “If there’s one thing we’ve learned, it’s that history has a way of repeating itself, and in this case, we can’t let that happen again,” he said this summer.

Sponsors of the lecture include the Fern and Manfred Steinfeld Program in Judaic Studies, the Abraham and Rebecca Solomon and Ida Schwartz Distinguished Lecture Fund in Judaic Studies, the religious studies department, the history department and the Knoxville Jewish Alliance.


Elizabeth Davis, UT media relations, (865) 974-5179,

Gilya Schmidt, head of the department of religious studies, (865) 974-2466,

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